Why Is There Music in Worship? :: PODCAST

Presented by Pastor Steve Shields at Curwensville Alliance on July 2, 2017

Several years ago, Laurel and I met a couple from Columbus, OH while we were staying at a bed and breakfast in Fairmont, IN. Since we all had children at a nearby Christian University, we began to talk about churches, and the conversation turned awkward.

It was like when you start talking about God with your cousin, who is a Jehovah’s Witness; things can get touchy before you even say anything controversial.

Finally, they broke off the conversation saying, “Our church is different than any other. We have no music in our worship service.”

They weren’t talking about instruments. They were talking about music. Their church had none. We hadn’t even been talking about music. But that was their issue. And it was sensitive.

I was stunned.

I really wanted to know how a group of Christians can come to the conclusion that they are better off without music in worship than with music in worship.

I feel sure part of their decision was a realization that music is controversial. It’s so controversial that people have made good money writing books about it – naming the issue, “The Worship War,” with book titles like Worship Wars, Putting an End to the Worship Wars, and Beyond Worship Wars. There are more sequels than a Star Trek franchise!

So, if music is that controversial, then why did God incorporate it as part of our worship? There are some really good reasons, when you think about it.

Consider those in this podcast, alone.


How Do You Worship? :: PODCAST

Presented at Curwensville Alliance on June 25, 2017 by Pastor Steve Shields

If you ever took a course in communication, the teacher or professor probably made a remark like this, early on: You cannot not communicate.

That’s true. Even the person who never speaks a word is communicating — by their expression, by their non-verbal, with their eyes, even with their silence.

This serves to show that communication is not just verbal, but non-verbal. And since worship is a form of communication, it might be wise to give our posture in worship some attention.

In this podcast, Pastor Steve examines six postures in worship, and gives some meaningful reflection on what they can tell us.


Who Told You God what God Is Like? :: PODCAST

Presented at Curwensville Alliance Church on 6/18/2017 by Pastor Steve

Every now and then you still hear someone make a statement that begins with the words, “The God I believe in….” as though there are lots of different God’s and we get to pick one or we get to create one. It’s been a while since I’ve heard or read those leading words, so I am guessing people finally get it — we can’t decide what God is like any more than we can decide what any other being is like.

So the new question becomes, “How do we learn what God really is like?” And the answer some might give can be harmful to their health. Most people develop their perception of God based on their relationship with authority figures in their life.

And often, our earthly father plays a major role in this.

In this podcast, Pastor Steve looks at Mary’s perception of God, and suggests that we’d be wise to rethink the image of God we’ve developed through our relationships and look to a biblical model.

If we do this, chances are, we will be much healthier in the way we see ourselves, the way we relate to others, and the way we feel about God.