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Think About God

Pioneer Brian Doerksen on what's wrong with worship music.

One of the founding fathers of modern worship music, Brian Doerksen has released his fourth solo album, Holy God (Integrity). While he's enthusiastic about his Lord, Doerksen isn't so excited about trends in the worship genre.

You have 25 albums to your credit as a worship leader or producer. So why do few people know your name?
When I first felt called to do this more than 20 years ago, I wanted to perform music on big stages. But God quickly called me to be all about worship, which is really, "Notice God, don't notice me."

That explains why you'd rather lead at your local church than get your name out there or go on a high-profile tour.
It is connected. If I'm going to write worship music, inspiring others and putting songs in the mouths of the local church, if I'm not anchored in the local church and finding my primary identity there, it's going to feel false. I hear people say, "My goal is to write a song that the whole world will sing." I look at them sideways and ask, "Why don't you try and write a song you want to sing in your prayers to God? Or a song that your local church wants to sing, where you're serving, where you're known and loved?" Let God worry about the rest of the world.

Why make an album focused exclusively on God's holiness?
Two reasons. The positive reason is, when I went to withdraw and seek God at the beginning of last year to learn what he wanted me to do, I had such a powerful encounter with him and his holiness. The more I meditated, the more it became the only thing I wanted to sing about.

The negative reason would be simply my deep concern about some of what is going on in the modern worship explosion—the shallowness, the man-centeredness, the banality. I wanted to do something that was ...

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Think About God
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July 2007

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