Why do you lead worship?
Often the motives are mixed. You find yourself wanting to point people to Jesus but also feeling a desire to be noticed and praised, to make yourself the center of attention.
Stephen Miller is the worship pastor for a large church of young, energetic Christians. He and his band record albums and lead worship for conferences all over the country. He knows the temptation to make himself the show, to pursue fame, to seek the applause of other people. And he has learned to want nothing to do with it.
In this book, Miller exhorts his fellow worship leaders to make Jesus the center of all their efforts. He teaches how to do this with Scripture, teaching, prayer, story, and song. In all, Miller’s call for worship leaders is to lead worship, whole-hearted and whole-minded exalting of God, rather than making a spectacle out of it.
Worship Leaders, We’re Not Rock Stars will encourage and challenge worship leaders by clarifying their purpose and identity, and by doing so will bless those they lead.
We’ve seen him—the messy-haired rocker worship leader or the neatly coiffed music director. Either way, though, he wants to be a rock star, to make himself the center of worship.
Stephen Miller is the worship pastor for a large, energetic church. He and his band record albums and lead worship for conferences all over the country. One day it struck him—he was the guy making himself the center of worship. So he began sorting through why he does what he does.
Why do you lead worship? Often the motives are mixed. You want to point people to Jesus but also desire to be noticed and praised. You want to make the best possible music for the biggest audience but perhaps instead you’re leading a modest, unglamorous congregation. Such mixed motivations can cause significant internal and external conflict.
No matter your role, Miller exhorts you to make Jesus the center of your worship. He reaches out to the church as a whole to show what true worship is and how to be led through teaching, prayer, story, and song. In all, Miller’s call is for leaders to lead worship and the church to participate in it—wholehearted, whole-minded exalting of God—rather than making a spectacle of it.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Chapter One - We Are Not Rock Stars
Chapter Two - If We Are Not Rock Stars, Then What Are We?
Chapter Three - We Are Redeemed
Chapter Four - We Are Worshipers
Chapter Five - We Are Pastors and Deacons
Chapter Six - We Are Theologians
Chapter Seven - We Are Storytellers (Liturgists)
Chapter Eight - We Are Evangelists
Chapter Nine - We Are Artists
Chapter Ten – All of Life is Worship
"Stephen Miller’s new book offers us the fruit of his many years of serving as worship leader and lover of the gospel. Thankfully, Worship Leaders, We Are Not Rock Stars does not read like a book written by an expert with a chip on his shoulder, rather by a called man with a burden on his heart—a man who has obviously been humbled and gladdened by the God of all grace. With the wisdom than can only come with years and tears, and with practical insights of a seasoned veteran, Stephen’s book offers timely advice and rich encouragement to worship leaders and congregants alike."
- Scotty Smith, Founding Pastor of Christ Community Church, Author of The Reign of Grace and Restoring Broken Things
“Worship Leaders, We Are Not Rock Stars is much needed and long overdue. It is directed to those who lead us in cooperate worship as we honor King Jesus when we sing, but it is also a book pastors would do well to heed as well! In these pages you will find words of wisdom that are honest and insightful. Hidden sins of the heart are exposed and biblical solutions are provided. I love Stephen’s heart and his transparency. I also love the vision he cast for those who occupy what is nothing less than an office of the church. There is no place in the Church for rock stars or superstars. There is only a place for a Savior whose name is Jesus. Stephen Miller makes this clear. Thank you my brother.”
- Daniel L. Akin, President of South Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary
"With warmth and vulnerability, Stephen Miller invites us on a journey to recover the vocation of "worship leader." He explores the key dimensions of this role, with a careful examination of Scripture on every page. If a new generation of worship leaders would read and discuss this book together, our churches would be better for it. After all, what we do when we gather in worship as the people of God becomes what we believe, for better or for worse. Worship doesn't just reflect our faith; it forms it. This book will help our worship leaders form our faith in richer ways."
- Glenn Packiam, Pastor of New Life Downtown, author of Discover the Mystery of Faith: How Worship Shapes Believing
“Stephen Miller is right. Jesus builds his church on a Rock (Matthew 16:18), but not on rock stars. In this book you will find bold, convictional, practical wisdom on leading toward worship that is neither boring nor entertainment-based. We can all use this sort of reframing of the most important thing we do in this age or in the age to come.”
- Russell D. Moore, President, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, Southern Baptist Convention
"I've always known Stephen Miller to be a man of passion and integrity whether in writing music, leading worship, or leading his family. The principles that guide him as a worshipper both on and off the stage shine through in Worship Leaders, We Are Not Rock Stars."
- Matt Carter, Pastor of The Austin Stone, Co-Author of For The City & The Big Win
"Jesus is our ultimate worship leader, and he didn’t come as an entertainer, but as a servant. As such, worship leaders should see themselves first and foremost as “worship servants” who point worshipers to Christ, not to themselves. Whatever the style of worship in our churches, and however old our songs, the temptation to entertain is real. This book calls pastors, elders, deacons, musicians, and all those leading in worship to strive to get our eyes off ourselves so that worshipers will be less distracted by us and, thus, more focused on worshiping God according to his Word."
- Burk Parsons, Co-pastor of Saint Andrew’s Chapel, Editor of Tabletalk magazine
"Worship Leaders, We are Not Rock Stars is a helpful contribution in the conversation of what worship leaders are, and what they are not. Elevating the role of the worship leader leads to gross idolatry. Diminishing the role of the worship leader departs from biblical church leadership. I pray that this book helps clarify the role of worship leaders as we set out to serve our local congregations in gospel ministry."
- Matt Boswell, Pastor of Ministries and Worship at Providence Church, Frisco, TX, founder of Doxology & Theology