September 20, 2015 Tony Morgan

Predictable: It Feels Like I Am Attending the Same Worship Service Every Sunday

Concert_By Daniel Robert via Unsplash

Have you ever watched the movie Groundhog Day? For you millennials in the crowd who didn’t realize we had talking pictures before the year 2000, Groundhog Day was a movie that featured Bill Murray playing a weatherman who has to cover the annual Groundhog Day event in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. When he gets up the “next day,” he finds out that he’s reliving Groundhog Day over and over again.

I bring up the movie because I’ve had the same conversation with four different churches in the last several weeks. It could be that I’m reliving the same day over and over again, or it could be that churches are forcing their congregations to relive the same worship service over and over again.

A friend of mine was complaining several years ago that the worship leader from his campus was spending an inordinate amount of time each week planning services. He would spend three days at the campus that’s not referred to as the “main campus” but everyone knows it’s really the place that all decisions are made. He wondered, “Why does it take three days? All you have to do is put the names of about 20 Hillsong United songs in a hat, and pull out three songs.”

Be honest with yourself. You’ve been to that same worship service. Opening song. Announcements. Three Hillsong or Passion worship songs. Offering. Message series video. 45-minute message. (Which is wayyyyyy tooooo loooooong.) Closing song and prayer.

You’re still reading because you know this is true. I could walk into just about any worship service in a “modern” church in the country and expect to see this service:

What’s even more frightening is that the parody video is five years old, and it’s still a “relevant” parody of modern church services. Nothing has changed.

This series of articles will hopefully challenge your perspective on this issue. We have to do something different. We have to engage an intentional strategy to refresh our church services.

God called us to: “Sing a new song to the LORD! Let the whole earth sing to the LORD!” (Psalm 96:1, NLT)

Are you ready to get unpredictable?

Photo Credit: Daniel Robert via Unsplash


Tony Morgan

Tony is the Founder and Lead Strategist of The Unstuck Group. Started in 2009, The Unstuck Group has served 500 churches throughout the United States and several countries around the world. Previously, Tony served on the senior leadership teams of three rapidly growing churches including NewSpring Church in South Carolina. He has five published books including, The Unstuck Church, and, with Amy Anderson, he hosts The Unstuck Church Podcast which has thousands of listeners each month.

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