A Pastoral Reflection on Oscar Wilde’s “The Ballad of Reading Gaol”

Zac HicksArt and Worship0 Comments

I’ve been preparing as a student for a most unique course on “Doctrine for Preaching and Pastoral Care,” with Dr. Jonathan Linebaugh at Knox Seminary. It will happen in a few weeks. He has us reading some unconventional (and splendid) material. The course is particularly designed to intersect with my English Reformation tract, as it is attempting to exposit the pastoral heart behind the Thirty-Nine Articles of the Church of England. Along with a few great theological books, we have … Read More

Why Confession Should Be Interrupted, Not Completed

Zac HicksWorship and Pastoral Ministry, Worship Pastoring, Worship Theology & Thought2 Comments

Feeling Worship Over the last two years, I’ve been thinking a lot about feeling and affect in worship. I’ve been pondering how our “emotional apprehension” in worship shapes, informs, propels our congregational gatherings. I used to think that if people just had enough instruction about what worship is and does, they would be more engaged in its elements. I still believe in that, but I’ve come to the conclusion that I can go deeper as a pastoral worship leader in pondering … Read More

My Big Move, My New Church

Zac HicksPersonal Stories & Testimonies11 Comments

Over the last twelve months, my postings have been sparse due to all the creative energy being poured into the book. (It’s available for pre-order on Amazon, by the way.) And over this last month I’ve been on radio silence as my family made a pretty big transition out of South Florida and on to a new call up the road. Many of you already know, but for those of you that don’t: I’ve joined hands with some great leaders … Read More

Watch the Fascinating Discussions I Had at Calvin

Zac HicksWorship Resources, Worship Theology & Thought0 Comments

One of the joys of both being on and moderating a panel discussion on worship issues at a place like the Calvin Symposium is that you’re bound to talk about things you didn’t imagine would be on the table. Such was my case as I moderated “The Worship Leader as Pastoral Musician.” So many important issues were brought up, and our hearts were on our sleeves. Many sensitive topics were not navigated around, but through. One of the things I … Read More

What I’ll Be Up to at the National Worship Leader Conference

Zac HicksWorship Resources0 Comments

I love the National Worship Leader Conferences. I’ve been to them in every kind of capacity now. I’ve been there as a participant (Check out my post on that from several years back). I’ve been there as a songwriter, featured at one of their informal showcases. I’ve been there to conduct an interview with Bill and Gloria Gaither (read my insights about that here). Last year, I had the opportunity to speak about Jesus as the one true Worship Leader. … Read More

Thoughts About the Song “Almighty God (Our Hearts Are Open)”

Zac HicksSongwriting2 Comments

If you follow my blog, and if you read my book, you will hear a lot about the Reformational distinction of Law and Gospel. For me, this paradigm is inescapable not only in the Bible but in all of life. It is the distinction that Paul makes in order to exegete the whole Bible in a Christological fashion. From his clear statement in Galatians 2:16, to his developed soteriology in Romans 3, to his exegesis of the Pentateuch in 2 … Read More

The Chink in the Reformation’s Iconoclastic Armor

Zac HicksArt and Worship, Church & Ecclesiology, History of Worship and Church Music9 Comments

Zombies in the Lights A few days ago, I ended up in a really fascinating dialogue on Twitter with thoughtful worship leader, Jordan Atwell (@jordanatwell) and visual liturgy smart guy, Stephen Proctor (@stephenproctor). We were entertaining the question, in response to my tweet about this wonderful article, about what it looks like to pastorally engage visual aesthetics in worship. We tend to think of things like projection, screens, lights, and other visual atmospherics as either neutral cultural phenomena or (more … Read More

What You Can Expect from Our New Album

Zac HicksAlbum Reviews2 Comments

In eleven days, we will have a night of worship and release our album down here in Fort Lauderdale. It will be a special night in a lot of ways. For me, it will be the culmination of three hard and wonderful years of ministry as well as the fruit of many more years of songwriting. What These Songs Have Meant to Us Julie Anne Vargas and I set out a year and a half ago to begin writing a … Read More

Review of The Next Worship, by Sandra Van Opstal

Zac HicksBook Reviews0 Comments

I currently serve in a context of tremendous diversity. In the market just two blocks from my house, I regularly hear five different languages—English, Spanish, Portuguese, Creole, and French—and more infrequently hear at least another three. The church I serve doesn’t yet look like our city, but it’s making strides. When I arrived in South Florida over three years ago, I knew that praying through how to engage worship in this diverse climate would need to be on the top … Read More

The Worship Pastor – Book Update #2

Zac HicksWorship Theology & Thought0 Comments

  (Read the initial post) (Read Book Update #1) Book Update #2 It’s been a while since my initial post and the first update about the progress of The Worship Pastor. I’m excited to tell you that its now available for pre-order on Amazon, due out on October 11! Last week, I finished the hard work of doing some extensive indexing for the book (I find indexes valuable for a host of reasons), and Zondervan is in the middle of … Read More