Tag Archives: Darlene Zschech

Review: Worship Changes Everything, by Darlene Zschech

Worship Changes Everything, by Darlene ZschechWorship Changes Everything, by Darlene Zschech (Bethany House, 2015)

Note the subtitle of this book: “Experiencing God’s Presence in Every Moment of Life.” Worship Changes Everything is about far more than the music we sing on a Sunday morning.

The book is divided into two sections: The Heart of Worship and The Hands of Worship. First, it focuses on God’s nature and our response to Him from our hearts, and then the bulk of the chapters explore how we can live our worship in all aspects of our lives.

Those aspects include things like service and mission, but also our words and attitudes, suffering, money, and relationships.

The author shares personal examples as illustrations, but the book’s teaching basis is clearly Scripture. She includes numerous quotes from the Bible as well as some from respected teachers.

I found much in these pages to encourage and challenge me. Practical and biblical, Worship Changes Everything is a book I’d recommend to anyone who’d like to live closer with God.

Favourite lines:

Praise is our stance of faith. Praise is a weapon. Praise announces God’s reign in our hearts. [p. 60]

Our attitudes are transformed as we decide to let go and let the Holy Spirit do His work in us. This means replacing negative thoughts and mindsets, arresting our attitudes that we know will not be of benefit. [p. 113]

Darlene Zschech is most known for her contributions to contemporary worship music, but she’s also the author of books on Christian living. For more about the author and her ministries, visit her website: darlenezschech.com.

[Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group.]

Remembering Our Purpose

I am writing to God’s church in Corinth, to you who have been called by God to be his own holy people. He made you holy by means of Christ Jesus, just as he did for all people everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours.
1 Corinthians 1:2, NLT*

Do we sometimes forget our purpose as Christ-followers?

God called us “to be His own holy people,” and He made us holy through Jesus. He gave us “everything we need for living a godly life” (1 Peter 1:3, NLT*). Paul said, “you have every spiritual gift you need as you eagerly wait for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 1:7, NLT*).

Too often it seems our focus and energies become tangled up in our own interests and goals, or in the behind-the-scenes struggles to keep our churches running smoothly.

These and other short-term issues fill our sight until we forget it’s all about God.

He called us to live for His glory. Not in flashy holiness, larger than life but surface-only. True holiness, depending on Him, following His lead. Trusting Him, so that others can see the difference He makes in our lives.

Our holy and so-merciful God, thank You for saving us from darkness and spiritual death. Remind us of our calling, and of who You are. Overwhelm us with a glimpse of Your presence. Give us perspective, and the joy of belonging to You, and help us to live for Your glory.

Today’s song is one of worship and surrender: “The Potter’s Hand,” by Darlene Zschech.

*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Living God’s Way

The word of God came to Solomon saying, “About this Temple you are building—what’s important is that you live the way I’ve set out for you and do what I tell you, following my instructions carefully and obediently. Then I’ll complete in you the promise I made to David your father. I’ll personally take up my residence among the Israelites—I won’t desert my people Israel.”
1 Kings 6:11-13, MSG* (emphasis mine)

Solomon’s Temple was a work of art—a work of worship—the best that humans could do to construct a place worthy of the Lord’s presence. It couldn’t contain God, but it was a beautiful connecting-point with Him.

For New Testament Christians, God keeps this promise to personally take up His residence among us by placing His Spirit inside us.

We’re even less worthy of His presence than the Temple building—except that Jesus has washed us and is in the process of re-creating us into His image.

And so, since we’re so richly blessed, we need to do what God said:

  • live the way He sets out for us
  • do what He tells us
  • follow His instructions

Rigidity here would be to miss the point. We’re to live carefully and obediently. Lovingly. Trusting our Good Shepherd.

It’s about staying close to Him instead of wandering away. Believing He is strong and loving to care for us. Relying on His wisdom and guidance.

Holy and majestic God, our minds can’t comprehend how One such as You could dwell in people such as us—but You do it anyway. Thank You for making us worthy, and thank You for the gift of Your presence. Help us to know and rely on You and to live lives worthy of Your Name.

Here’s a new-to-me song from Darlene Zschech: “Show Me Your Ways.”

*The Message (MSG) Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson