Book Recommendations for Worship Leaders: 2016 Edition

Book Recommendations for Worship Leaders: 2016 Edition

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Recently I was asked about book recommendations for worship leaders. There’s a lot out there that are either directly or indirectly helpful to the worship leaders growth and development. Here’s some I’ve read recently worth checking out:

The Worship Pastor: A Call To Ministry For Worship Leaders and Teams by Zac Hicks

Premise: I’ve followed Zac Hicks blog and heard him speak at the  2016 National Worship Leader Convention.  This is a new generation worship thought leader who “gets it.” His comprehensive guidebook is both scholarly and practical, exploring the many roles and responsibilities of worship leaders including: theologian, disciple, worshiper, evangelist, mentor, artist, counselor, musician, servant leader, and producer. Highly recommended.

Worship Leaders, We Are Not Rock Stars by Stephen Miller.

Premise: This book is great for modern worship leaders to find the right mind-set. Quote from the back cover: “Whether you’re ‘the messy-haired rocker worship leader or the neatly coiffed music director’,  Miller’s call is for leaders to lead worship and the church to participate in wholehearted, whole-minded, exalting of God—rather than making a spectacle of it.”

True Worshipers: Seeking What Matters to God by Bob Kauflin

Premise: True Worshipers is Bob’s follow up to his highly regarded Worship Matters: Leading Others to Encounter the Greatness of God. This is an excellent introduction to understanding the mentality and biblical foundations of worship. Bob says “the essence of worship is exalting God in our hearts and actions”. This book is intended to help everyone, not just worship leaders, grasp what worship “in spirit and truth” is, how we do it, and why we do it.

The Six Hats of The Worship Leader by Rich Kirkpatrick

Premise: Rich is a ministry veteran with a wide range of experience.  This easy-to-read primer provides an insightful overview of the many leadership roles required for effective worship ministry.

Unceasing Worship: Biblical Perspectives on Worship and the Arts by Harold Best

Premise: This is my favorite book on worship theology and it has shaped my ministry philosophy profoundly. Not an easy read, but oh so inspiring! One of my favorite quotes: “We are, every one of us, unceasing worshipers and will remain so forever, for eternity is an infinite extrapolation of one of two conditions: a surrender to the sinfulness of sin unto infinite loss, or the commitment of personal righteousness unto infinite gain. This is the central fact of our existence, and it drives every other fact. Within it lies the story of creation or final loss.”  

Ancient-Future Worship: Proclaiming and Enacting God’s Narrative by Robert E Webber

Premise: I had the great privilege of attending the Institute for Worship Studies while Dr. Webber was still lecturing there. Warm, brilliant, deep thinking and good humored guy. This was the last book he published in the Ancient-Future series and the most concise. In my opinion, every worship leader should read this.

Also recommended:

The Purpose of Man: Designed to Worship by AW Tozer 

Worship Matters: Leading Others to Encounter the Greatness of God by Bob Kauflin

WORSHIP SMARTbook: Actionable Tips For Real World Worship Second Edition by Anthony Skinner

Beyond Sunday: A Step-By-Step Guide To Creating And Sustaining A Vision For Your Worship Team by David Santistevan  (Also available for free at

Books on my future reading list:

Essential Worship: A Handbook for Leaders by Greg Scheer

Sound Check: How Worship Teams Can Pursue Authenticity, Excellence, and Purpose by Kurtis Parks

In this article I simply wanted to point you to some great resources for worship leadership. You can get more in depth information by checking out the descriptions and reviews on Amazon. com or other sources.

Happy reading, and study to show yourself as one approved! (2 Timothy 2:15)


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