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This is not a scholarly blog about worship…

This is not a scholarly blog about worship…

. . . but it is a blog about worship — which, by the way, is much more than an activity for one hour on a weekend, a small group meeting in a suburban coffee house, or a walk in the woods. Properly understood, worship is a lifestyle. It is central to who I am and to who God is. It is the best and only worthy use of my one “wild and precious life,” as Mary Oliver said.

According to Jesus, worship is neither here nor there, but something that is offered in spirit and truth (John 4:19-24). Something more easily said than done, since we are all imperfect. Try as we might, we simply cannot do worship perfectly, as worship planners know only too well. I understand this not only from my experience in planning and leading worship but because I know myself. And while I don’t know all of my faults, I know enough of them to tell you: it isn’t perfect.

In every great service, there is always something that goes wrong, some unforeseen distraction, some no-show reader, some wrong note, candle not lit, line dropped, bulletin typoed, or word mispronounced. I’ve got some good stories.

I share this blog not to instruct, but to inspire. Not to be critical of worship services (assigning value, say, as do judges of figure skating competitions), but to reflect on the goodness of worship itself. And if any learning is to happen, it will be my own. I will share with you my experiences, insights, observations, and curious encounters, and will pass along prayers and songs.

For a title, I borrowed a line from a short prayer book called Centering Prayers by Peter Traben Haas, (MORE HERE) and I invite you to join me — just one imperfect saint on the pathway, happy for the company.

About Warren Howell

Warren was raised in the home of a church musician in Southern California in the 60s-70s in what was an eclectic confluence of cultures. Which may explain why he’s all over the place musically.

He holds degrees in church music from Baylor University and Southern Seminary. He serves South Frankfort Presbyterian Church, Frankfort, Kentucky. Previously, he served Calvary Baptist Church, Lexington, Kentucky and St. John’s Baptist Church, Charlotte, North Carolina.

Warren and his wife, Maureen (whom he met in seminary), raised two children, love to travel, read, and cook. They are managed at home by their beagle-basset, Ginger, Vice-President in charge of travel arrangements.

worship resources

Warren Howell curates a collection of lectionary-based worship resources at Faithelement. Find prayers, litanies, hymn and anthem suggestions, and more.