By contrast, he says, "Good, rich, Christ-centered worship is a feast. This kind of worship is a bounty of beauty and truth, with layers of flavor, textures of taste. Each course builds on the previous one, elevating the dining experience from a functional necessity to an odyssey of ecstasy." He structures the book around six key points of a good, rich, Christ-centered worship experience:
1. Celebration: Why We RejoiceMuch of this book (and the author's journey) resonated with me, particularly his calls for a return to a narrative (story) structure in worship and for a re-discovery of confession as a key component in worship. However, I was disappointed in several things. First, I found myself wishing that his excellent exploration of worship in the early Church had recognized that the Church Fathers were blazing new trails that made both theological and cultural sense in their milieu, rather than suggesting (if I understood him right) that their patterns were necessarily intended for all contexts. Second, I wish with his call for a re-discovery of the Psalter in worship he had pointed out the rich lyrical possibilities for modern songwriters to write new melodies to incorporate the psalms into public worship (a la John Michael Talbot and Sons of Korah). And, finally, I found myself wishing that he had called less for a return to the past than creatively sketching a new way forward.
2. Proclamation: Tethered to Our Story
3. Invocation: The Personal Presence of God
4. Confession: Finding the God of Mercy
5. Invitation: Turning to One Another
6. Eucharist: Embracing the Mystery of Faith
Nonetheless, I found it an engrossing and thought-provoking read to which all pastors and church leaders should give consideration.