You may or may not have heard that North Side is going through some changes now. Many have asked me, “Are you guys getting rid of the traditional service?” The short answer is yes. The other part of the answer is: we are also getting rid of our contemporary services.
We are uniting our church from 3 services into 2. There are many theological and logistical reasons of which this one post cannot address. Succinctly, we believe that God is more honored when we unite in worship regardless of our preferences (theological), and we have accommodated preferences to a point where our schedule is actually a hindrance for many families in our attempt to please everyone (logistical).
So, no traditional. No contemporary. So everyone assumes that we are doing blended worship. The only problem with that is North Side’s worship pastor (me) is absolutely disgusted by that format. Let me explain why:
A blended type of worship creates services based upon a formula seen in the picture above. Take 1 contemporary song, add 1 traditional song, add 1 special (choir or solo), and that equals blended worship. Seems pretty easy, right? It is easy to create a flowsheet like that, the only problem is the audience has now become man and not God. In this approach, the worship leader tries to make part of the congregation happy for 50% of the service, and make the other part happy for the other 50%. When the band plays the contemporary song, all the contemporaries get into it and love it while the traditionalists fold their arms or hold their ears. When the traditional song is played, all the traditionalists sing out while the contemporaries yawn and cross their arms in boredom.
So as a worship pastor, why in the world would I attempt to create services for people who would be happy half the time? In fact, why in the world would I attempt to create a service for any group of people? When did worship ever become about what we got out of it?
So, what are we calling our services that start on Sept. 4th? Worship services. You might hear the term united for a while, but in the end, it will be called our worship services. What kind? It’s North Side. It’s diverse because our people are diverse. Our worship will have biblical approaches and lyrics because we adore the Bible. One week it might be black gospel, bluegrass, or monastic, but it will be whatever we feel like that can best glorify God that day according to what Scripture we are teaching.
No formula. No study group. No lobbyists. Jesus, Jesus, and then some more Jesus.