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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

WORSHIP WALK




In a world constantly besieged by parochial and superficial views, we often find ourselves in the throes of equating music with worship. This tendency is not confined to one specific group of believers, but, sadly enough, it is a worldwide spectacle. It must be understood that while music constitutes one important aspect of worship which contributes to our worship, it is not the final word. While our understanding of worship is lopsided, the Bible is pointedly clear on the issue: We must worship in spirit and truth!

To help Christians better understand what it means to worship and directs them to true worship, Gareth J. Goossen, who has conducted workshops and seminars on the theme of worship, offers relevant and practical insights in his book Worship Walk: Where Worship and Life Intersect.

Worship Walk is a three-part book with practical steps to show how one’s life and worship should come together, and how one should live out the life meant to be lived as a true worshipper. The first part entitled Getting Started details the essence of true worship. The second part Walking It Out offers practical steps to help the life of a true worshipper. And the final part is Tying Up the Loose Ends which sums up the entire book.

A careful study of the book teaches that worship is not about us, it is not a way of life, not entertainment or what many of us wrongfully perceived as a weekly activity.

Then what is worship? Gareth points out that worship is about God, an intense longing to know and love Him, cultivate a deeper relationship with God, and the ultimate desire and conscious effort to get close to Him as far as humanly possible. It is living your life as worship to God. At the heart of all true worship is the humble submission before God which engages all of our being, and not just the praises we offered through singing.

Worship Walk: Where Worship and Life Intersect is a must-read book, containing insightful and practical truths, which is a timely reminder of what worship is all about and how we are to walk it out in our lives.


Gareth J Goossen
GARETH J GOOSSEN is the executive director of MakeUsHoly ministries. He has been instrumental in encouraging the church across denominations in North, Central and South America in their corporate worship and in their ability to enjoy the presence of God in everyday life. His passion is for renewal through worship, prayer and discipleship. Gareth is excited at the moving of God’s Spirit, igniting the passion for God in young people and adults alike.

Gareth, together with his wife Gayle and family, followed God’s call from their farm in Starbuck, Manitoba, Canada, to Fresno, CA, USA, where he attended the Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary, 1984–1986. Following graduation with a Masters of Arts in New Testament Theology he was associate pastor to youth, young adults and worship ministries in two Canadian Mennonite Brethren Churches—Cariboo Bethel Church in Williams Lake, BC (1986–1989) and Kitchener Mennonite Brethren Church in Kitchener, ON (1989–1994). During this time God stirred Gareth’s heart in worship and renewal. He has been actively leading worship for since 1986.

In 1993 Gareth organized the makeusholy: Worship and Renewal Conference, held at the Waterloo Mennonite Brethren Church in Waterloo, ON, Canada. It was here that he first met Dr. Peter H. Davids and Brian Doerksen. The conference was a watershed moment for the direction God was leading him.

As a result, in 1994 Gareth resigned as youth and worship pastor of Kitchener Mennonite Brethren Church and began makeusholy ministries in response to the need for foundational teaching that invites renewal through worship, prayer and discipleship. Gareth travels across North America and Latin America encouraging churches in their worship—many of who are going through transitions in their musical expression of worship. Gareth seeks to bring foundational teaching on worship to the church; create a middle ground of blessing between the generations; work with worship teams to elevate expectation and excellence. More recently much of his focus is in teaching the broader church—beyond the musicians and singers—a passionate pursuit of Jesus in a daily walk of worship. Broadening the understanding of worship beyond the walls of the church and into the nitty-gritty of everyday existence is where the revolution begins.

In 2001 Gareth met Danilo Montero at a CoiCom conference in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. As a result of this meeting God began to open many more doors into the Latin American church, starting with a speaking engagement at Danilo Montero’s Worship Retreat in San José, Costa Rica the following year.

The love for the Latino people and the church there has led to the translation and publication of Worship Walk into Spanish. In August of 2012 “Caminar en Adoración: donde la adoración intercepta con la vida” was released on WestBow Press.

Gareth, with his wife Gayle, live in Breslau, Ontario, Canada. They have their three adult children—Chris, Dan, Carine—and three grandchildren—Ashton, Ava, Gabriel. They are actively involved in leadership responsibilities with The Meeting House—their home church in Kitchener, ON. The focus of the church is the irreligious message of Jesus and bringing his presence to the people in the community by actively engaging with them in acts of compassion. A church that is attempting to worship walk—intersecting the worship of the church with the life of the community!

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