Thursday, June 29, 2006

pd worship day #3

Got those batteries charged I've posted some pics below. This was my favorite day so far. John Ortberg spoke this morning. He was awesome. I was really challenged by much of what he had to say. He talked about us having a shadow mission, that often distracts us from our God given mission from God. Often this consumes us and unknowingly we slip into patterns that have nothing to do with what God has called us to.

Later I went to a songwriting session with Tim Hughes, and then a session on dealing with divas with Saddleback's vocal director, tonight after dinner we head back to the church for a Mercy Me concert.

a good day...

Takin a break after lunch...sufferin for Jesus here in OC. :-)

Tim Hughes lead worship this morning. amazing...such an incredible time with God. God has really gifted and annointed him as a leader. My favorite part of the week so far.

Tim Hughes did one of the best song writing classes I have ever been too. I often get frustrated with these, because they all say the same thing. Tim had some fresh ideas, and capped the whole thing off by playing through the evolution of the writing process of one of his songs. It was really helpful to see that in action.

all this conferencing has made us tired!

pd worship day #2

This will be a short one...batteries on the camera were dead...more pics.

Some good sessions again today...lots of good nuggets that I am anxious to apply to my leadership of our team. A great tech session with Lincoln Brewster.

The highlight of the day though was dinner with los and his team from Sandals Church. They are a great bunch of folks, and I was so excited to finally connect with los in person. I love how the blogospere can make connections...we had a great time talking, and sharing about our families. He had some great things to share about how he structures his ministry as well. I was so encouraged to just sit and talk with another worship pastor who is doing church in ways similar to us at History and hearing how they have overcome some the challenges that we are facing.

I also got to meet pat he too hails from the west coast, and got to know los through blogs. He came to dinner with us and I'm looking forward to keeping up with him too.

a good day...

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

pd worship day #1

Wow...the conference started with a bang! There was a great time of worship lead by Rick Muchow from Saddleback. The team was amazing and it was so refreshing to just sing at the top of my lungs in worship to God. Looking forward to more of this...

Rick Warren gave the keynote address and did an amazing job. He talked on worship...big suprise...but gave some great testimonies about his journey in starting Saddleback. This was especially interesting to me being from a church plant. One big thing that hit me between the eyes was what he had to say about worry. He said that when we worry we are trying to do God's job...we are trying to prove to God that we are helping Him. But....The antidote to worry is worship.

The Saddleback campus is really outstanding...very different from anything I have ever seen. My one big observation today is that their value on community is strongly expressed in their architecture.

Some Pics

Got to meet up with Carlos Whittaker of the blog world. It's awesome that blogs can connect us in ministry even on opposite coasts!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

location, location, location

My wife and I arrived here in the OC for the P. Ditty worship conference yesterday. The conference gets going in a couple of hours, just after lunch today. I'm psyched about the amazing lineup of worship leaders, and anxious for what God has to say to me this week.

Buuut...I also can't complaine about the location...

We spent the evening last night exploring the Pacific Coast Highway and made our way down to Laguna Beach of TV fame. It was gorgeous! Today we hit the conference. More to come soon....

Sunday, June 25, 2006

hittin' the road...

Tricia and I are hopping on a plane tommorrow to head out to the Purpose Driven Worship conference in Southern California. Small group and packing is on the agenda for tonight...then a bit of sleep and our flight leaves at 7:20am tommorrow!

Friday, June 23, 2006


I'm almost finished reading Rick Mckinley's book Jesus in the Margins. I've enjoyed it so is very gospel focused...definitely a book that I would give to a friend who is investigating faith in Christ.

One thing that struck me this week as I was reading was McKinley's repeated use of the word reimagine. He is inviting people...people in the margins to imagine a life where those margins are transformed.

To those with a broken childhood, "Jesus invited us to reimagine life as a child of God." To those who struggle with the idea of God as father, "He invites us to reimagine life in relationship with the perfect father."

All of this imagining got me thinking...we often talk in our staff meetings about the creative techniques of Disney's Imagineering Team. How they use story and creativity to creative immersive environments to their patrons.

In the church we are up to something significantly more eternal than Disney is, but God has still called us to creativity. The leap that has to be made from "no Jesus" to "knowing Jesus" and the reality that entails is pretty huge for most people. Perhaps God has called us in the local church to be on reimagineering teams...working together creatively to help people reimagine their lives in the hands of a loving Savior.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Diet Coke + Mentos = Science

you gotta see this. the way...mentos has a great website.

who knew...the fresh maker.

sing a new song...

Against my better sonic judgement I posted a quick peak at the new song we are doing called Speak It Out. This audio is straight from the board so its got that wonderful "bootleg with lots of mistakes" vibe going. :-) This was our first go at the you can hear us trying to get our feet under us a bit, but it has really solidified in recent weeks, and I'm really happy with it.

I'm so passionate about song writing in the local church. There is a freshness to worship that comes from songs that reflect the seasons of a particular congregation. One of my biggest prayers that God would give me and our church new songs to sing about what He is doing in and through us.

("Speak It Out" Copyright 2006 Matthew C. Morgan)

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

set list 06.18.06

This past Sunday was Man Day at History. It was great fun, and Ben gave a challenging message to our men about preserving their integrity. Worship went well over all, but we did have a rough go of it technically. We were a bit short staffed with some of our volunteers out on vacation, etc so I had a couple of my guys spread really thin...they did awesome considering all they had to do! (thanks Ed!!)

I learned some good lessons on the technical side of things and will be implementing some safe guards to try and simplify some steps for our volunteers. I am learning over and over that assumption is a killer in technical areas. We need to make sure that things are really clear for the folks that are working hard behind the scenes. It makes our lives and theirs so much easier.
Here was our set:

Musical Intro
No One Like You - Crowder

Break for folks to get ribs (thanks Julie!!) and root beer. There was also a nacho cheese fountain... (you rock Ally!)

Everyday - Hillsong United
King of Glory - Chris Tomlin

From the Inside Out - Hillsong United
This came right after the message. This is fast becoming a favorite with the band and with our church.

Overall this week was kind of tough for me...I get easily distracted by little things, but I did get great feedback from the folks that came, and I saw so many fathers there that didn't normally attend church that it really makes it all worth it. Many of them responded so well to the fact that we went out of our way to make them feel special.

Funny how much a guy in a nascar uniform on the back of a truck handing out root beer from a baby pool can communicate the love of Christ... :-)

Monday, June 19, 2006

its a race...guess who's winning...

check this out...and vote....
...nice to see things as they should that glorifies God pushing the musical envelope and rising above the fray.

in his words:
first i must say that, "i'm completely astounded." second i must say, "please go vote." i realize voting for a band such as ours is a strange and awkward thing, and i hesitate to ask, but i'm certain it would generate some attention from folks normally uninterested and possibly bearing pessimistic opinions regarding music of this nature. it's just not everyday we can have a voting contest, pitting busta rhymez vs the crowder band. and we must take advantage, yes? it shall be fun and rewarding. so i humbly ask that you click the link and vote and then forward to your friends and family, of course requesting they help you crush mr. busta as well. we love mr. busta dearly, but he has a burgeoning film career and we do not.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


just had some of these tonight...nasty...but worth the laughs.

Click here for a list of flavors

summoning self

Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.
Psalm 103:1-2
This passage really struck me this morning. It is the self summoning the self to praise (as Brueggamen puts it). But I was struck by the similarity of the language to that used at the end of this song:

Praise the Lord, you his angels....
Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts...
Praise the Lord, all his works...
Praise the Lord, O my soul...

I think sometimes there is a tendency in worship to wait for it to wait for the mood, the zone, the Spirit. And while there is a place for waiting in worship there is also a place for us to summon the reluctant self to join with creation in the worship of the God who made us and has redeemed us.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

set list 06.11.06

This past Sunday was great! I was so proud of our team. Jesse our electric guitar player broke a string at the very beginning of the second song, but he didn't miss a beat, and not many in the congregation even noticed.

We also added a second electric guitar this week. A college student who is home for the summer has been coming to rehearsals, and this was his first week on the team. He did a great job playing on the team, and then did an amazing rewrite and cover of "crazy" by seal during our offering time. I get the most satisfaction as a leader when I see guys on my team stepping out and flourishing!

Here was our set for this week:

"Crazy" - Seal (This was just a short instrumental teaser for what was to come)
Marvelous Light - Charlie Hall
No One Like You - David Crowder
Speak It Out - Matt Morgan

"Crazy" - Seal
Terry played this one with just an acoustic guitar during our offering and it provided a really nice feel and contrasted well with the volume and fullness of the rest of the set.

Everything Glorious - David Crowder
This last song we did after the message and during communion. I was curious how it would fit as a communion song, but it fit really well I think. It speaks of redemptive themes that fit well with the active remembrance of the body and blood of Christ. We have done this song a lot in recent weeks, and it really resonates with our church. I've only found it on the most recent Passion album...

Friday, June 09, 2006

b collision

Looking forward to this:

You can read about it here.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Set List 06.04.06

Following the example of Tim I thought I'd start posting our setlists from the previous week. So this is what we did:

Everyday - Hillsong United
Favorite Friend - Darrell Evans
From the Inside Out - Hillsong United

Speak it Out - Matt Morgan

Beautiful One - Tim Hughes.

Things went really well. We tried my new song out this week during the offering time, and it seemed to go pretty well. I was so psyched with what the band did to take this song to new levels.