11 Non-Negotiable Characteristics of Highpoint Church's Corporate Worship Culture

Allow me to elaborate...

+ Yes, these are free & safe environments. Churches often miss this one right off the bat. We recognize that people are positively screwed up. Every. Single. One. Of. Us. So, instead of trying to clean ourselves up, and then come to God, we just come to God. Yes, exactly how we are. Also, Highpoint is so big now that we have former Baptists, Methodists, Catholics, COGICs, Assembly of Gods, Presbyterians, Atheists, Agnostics, Wiccans, Nazarenes, Buddhists, Hindus, & the list goes on... If we think for one second that all of us are going to approach corporate worship the exact same, WE ARE CRAZY. We're different. Some lift their hands - others clap them. Some lift their voices to a shout - others whisper their prayers to God. Some open their arms - some fold them. Some sway - others sit. Some cry - others smile & laugh. You get the point.
We are people in seasons of life. Let's not forget that.

+ We do aim to create distractionless environments. This applies to our service flow as well as in the congregation. We don't allow people to bring tambourines and hand drums to service.
I don't feel the need to explain why.

+ We encourage our church family to take care of their business with God & not worry too much about their neighbor. Allow them to not sing - to sing a bit too loud... These environments are not for judgement. We long to create a perfect place for IMPERFECT people. Let's be careful about thinking that we have it figured out. We would all be much more comfortable if everyone just looked, thought, acted, & worshipped the way we do, wouldn't we? That's not the Kingdom of Heaven. THANK GOD.

+ We always want to encourage participation & posture - in your own way. It's never forced. We "Invite" you to lift your hands... or "Invite" you to open your hands to The Lord... "If you are comfortable" with it. We want to lead you and push you a little bit - but we're not forcing you out of the plane.
You can skydive if you want. 

+ The aim is almost never entertainment. Every once in awhile, we may do some special, fun song... that has more of an entertainment feel, but the reality even then is : When the Body of Christ gets together and has fun - that is worship too isn't it??? I, myself, have worshipped at Coldplay, U2, Paul McCartney,
Lenny Kravitz, and Killers concerts. I promise. It's all God's anyway - whether we realize it or not.

We have two terms that I'd like to define.

VERTICAL WORSHIP: Placing our mind's attention & heart's affection on God - often while singing to God about who He is, what He has done, & our relationship to Him. Then, Glorifying the Father, through Jesus, His Son, in the power & presence of the Holy Spirit.

HORIZONTAL WORSHIP: Placing our mind's attention & heart's affection on God - often while singing to each other about who God is, what He has done, & our relationship to Him. Then, encouraging one another, spurring one another on, & declaring publicly and boldly that He is our God and we are His people.

+ Sometimes we may sing hymns that sound like The National. Other times we may sing a praise song that sounds like Katy Perry. Music is everywhere. Every commercial. Every gas station. Every restaurant. Music evolves, changes, grows, and blossoms as technology & people advance. We embrace this, and LOVE attaching timeless truths to timely music. This is how Highpoint does it. Confession: I've never been a part of a church with a pianist & pipe organ (and maybe that's why it seems so bizarre to me) but our music isn't a 'Josh Maze' thing - it's a Highpoint thing. If I wasn't the Worship Pastor, I guarantee that Highpoint would still be singing a lot of these same songs in the same exact way.

+ We strive to lay down our preferences & allow the strong to build the church for the weak. You may prefer one song over another - or one style over another. That's actually a beautiful thing. Let's be mature about the fact that that one song that you really can't stand is probably someone elses favorite song. Case & Point: Nickelback is one of the most commercially successful Canadian bands of all time, having sold more than 50 million albums worldwide and ranking as the eleventh best-selling music act, and the second best-selling foreign act in the U.S. of the 2000s, behind The Beatles. This blows my mind. It almost makes me sick to my stomach to type the words Nickelback & The Beatles in the same sentence... But that's my preference. No big deal. You like Nickelback? Fantastic.

+ We have a lot of talented worship leaders. I wish I could draw people into the small moments like Jacob Zachary, I wish I could have perfect pitch like Tyler Stevenson, I wish I could sing as loud and gnarly as Carolyn Long, I wish I could sing as high as Jordan Hays... the list goes on... But it's not about a SINGLE ONE OF US. It never has been. We all have different strengths. One of the cool things about our Highpoint Creative Team is that we have well over 10 different Worship Leaders... It's like a worship leader buffet every Sunday! This is something we've been very careful to craft over the years. Why? Because it points to our philosophy over and over again - it's not about any person. It's all about JESUS.

It's all about Jesus.

Posted by Josh Maze at 6:47 PM