To help teens advance in ways of worship

In two recent posts (the second is here), I shared two-word expressions written by standout teens who were showing their grasp of the core meaning of worship.  Some of those words amounted to the best of the weekend—and the best of the memories, too.

I now want to share some of the conceptual plans I made for worship at that event.

The overall theme of the weekend was “Leadership from a Different Perspective,” so I made it my goal to play into that theme—sharing and modeling worship from biblical perspectives, to help teens advance in ways of worship.

My essential idea was to use Bible characters as exemplars—taking their recorded worship as models, and trying to get into their souls, as it were, to discover something of their perspectives, thus enriching our own.  I thought of looking in on any of these (and more):

Mary & Martha
The shepherds
Thomas (“my Lord and my God!”)
The woman who washed Jesus’ feet

In the end, I settled on Isaiah and Peter.

On another level of planning, I was thinking of “messaging” and the fact that worship can be said to be messaging and communicating, so I played with the internet abbreviation TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol)

TCP/IP also referred, on that 1998 weekend, to

  1. Two Compelling Perspectives (or Two Confessional Persons)/Isaiah & Peter
  2. Totally Committed Proskuneo/Impassioned People

Not commonly heard anymore, TCP/IP was once a hot expression for those of us who were either techno-geeks or were trying to be.  (This was before the days of text-messaging.)  In re-appropriating the letters at Youth Advance, I was trying to tap into a slice of pop culture:

In referring to the biblical Isaiah & Peter (Isaiah chapter 6, Mark 4, 6, 9), I asked the teens to consider intense stimuli they might experience themselves—not Isaiah’s vision of the Holy One or Peter’s response to the Master as He walked on water, but some stimulus that we might experience today.  Transferring a likely secular response to a sacred one, I believe, we can begin to understand what responding to God is:  in part, sending worship-filled messages to the awe-inspiring One.

At Youth Advance worship sessions, we sang songs, of course.  Some of the song titles are here:

My Life Is In You, Lord
You’re Worthy of My Praise
Above All Else
Praise the Lord, Ye Heav’ns, Adore Him
All Things Praise Thee
Great Is the Lord
Step by Step (O God, You Are My God)
Holy, Holy, Holy
I Exalt Thee
More Precious Than Silver
You Are My All in All
Shout to the Lord
Light the Fire
Lord, I Lift Your Name on High

Beyond the songs and prayers . . . so many of those teenagers at the 1998 Youth Advance “got it,” and that was a rewarding time for me personally.  At this juncture in life, I am finding it temporarily helpful to revisit positive times.


Next:  a treasured, written affirmation 

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