From the SPC Worship Committee

Notes from the Worship Committee:

Time: In an effort to keep our services on time, we will be keeping our announcements to an absolute minimum. Instead, the announcements will be placed in the church bulletin, newsletter, and will be continuously posted in church emails. We will trust these mediums for communication. If you are not currently on our church email list, please contact Sherry Unger at 650-2020.

Movement of Musicians: Many people have shared with us that they are distracted when our musicians move during prayer or preaching. Please know that, in order to avoid long pauses in the worship, our musicians will have to move quietly on the stage.  We feel that these discreet movements are necessary and proper and we do not feel that this is disrespectful to the Lord in any way.

Instrumental Music:  So that you are aware, our pastors have asked our musicians to play soft instrumental music during the pastoral prayer to set a tone of worship.  Not always, but at times the musicians will also be instructed to play instrumental music during closing moments of a sermon in order to move the congregation directly into a response of worship.

Standing v. Sitting:  The congregation is often instructed to stand during worship, however we realize that many of our people may not be able to stand for long periods of time.  Therefore, please know that you are permitted to sit at any time during the singing portion of worship.

Entertainment v. Worship:  This is a topic that is often discussed among our worship team.  In our music and preaching, our desire is to lead God’s people into worship of the Living God.  However, in keeping with scripture, we also desire to engage the entire being of our people – intellect, will, and emotion.  While we want to avoid “emotionalism” (defining the quality of worship by how it makes us feel), we believe that God has made us as emotional beings, and therefore, emotion is an expected response to the Lord.  No one knows the heart of another person, and so we would ask you to prayerfully consider that when congregants clap, laugh, weep, lift their hands, or say Amen – they are doing so to the glory of the Lord.  Yet, we would ask that these responses be expressed in an orderly fashion, and in keeping with the natural direction of our worship services.

Shoes v. Bare Feet:  As many of you may have noticed, during our contemporary service, a couple of our musicians lead us without wearing shoes.  We assure you that our musicians DO wear shoes to church, but they find it more helpful to be barefooted when they using the foot pedals associated with their instruments – just like an organist who doesn’t wear shoes because they are better able to play the foot pedals of the organ.  Again, in keeping with Exodus 3:5, we do not believe that this is disrespectful to the Lord.

As always, please keep us in prayer as we desire to bring fame and glory to God in all that we do at Surfside Presbyterian Church.


  1. Thank you Tim for sharing this. I have to say that I have heard grumblings from others who think the worship is more entertainment and show than worship. I would like to ask those that feel this way to not be so quick in judging the hearts of others. When a pastor preaches, or a teacher teaches, of for that matter, any person is doing the job that he or she has been called to do, the Lord tells them “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters,” Col. 3:23

    On a personal note, I would like to add that I have watched Avery grow immensely in his walk with the Lord over the past two years in particular. As a parent you know there is no greater joy than this. My worship during the service is actually increased as I watch Avery and the rest of the praise team freely worshiping Jesus and not being confined to what man may think or say. This to me shows great spiritual maturity. Let’s all try to encourage those in leadership instead of looking to criticize their ministry. Jesus knows we get enough of that from the world.


  2. The fact that these things even need to be addressed, to me, is sad. If your eyes and your heart are FOCUSED on the Lord, you shouldn’t see what’s on peoples feet or even care for that matter. Jesus LOVES worship – whether it is in bare feet, walking around on a stage, lifting your hands up, etc. – as long as it is true worship from the heart just loving Him and all He has done for us. Instead of complaining, try praying for and encouraging our worship team AND Pastors!!!
    1 Samuel 16:7 The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.


  3. It is both troubling and sad that there is even a need for this email. If our hearts were truly aligned with His we would not care one iota what “things” were going on around us during worship because our eyes would be on Him. Let’s worship Him in truth and in spirit and build up His kingdom for the glory of God. Praise Hus holy name. Amen and HALLELUJAH!


  4. Thank you Tim for sharing this even though it is sad that you had to. The music at church is so beautiful and the musicians are truly using their spiritual gifts as they lead us in praise and worship. Church is the place we worship the Lord in music, prayer, and studying the Word. It is not a place for criticism and complaints.


  5. Thank you Tim. I always remind people what Paul wrote in Romans 14. Even though Paul was using food and drink I believe its true to all aspects of life.


  6. On behalf of the music worship team, I’d like to say thanks for all the encouragement! I would encourage you to not get frustrated with people who have issues with the things Tim mentioned. We as a team, along with our pastors took the specific thoughts that people had communicated and tried to go through and see if there was anyhthing that we could adjust, or if anything needed to be changed biblically. We all have certain issues and specific things that may bother us – whether we hold them to ourselves, or voice them to a pastor – there are still things we hold in our hearts. Because of this, we all need repentance and the cross of Christ every day! As Tim said our ultimate goal is to bring glory and praise to Christ. I appoligize to anyone who may have issues with the things that are mentioned if they are in any way offensive. But please know that it is not in the heart of anyone on our music team to offend or upset or distract from anyone’s worship. Believe me when I say that all of us feel honored to serve. If Christ called us to sit in the congregation to worship, and not up on a stage, we would do it in a heart beat! Every Sunday we strive to make less of us and more of Christ! We love everyone in the congregation and pray for you all every week that God would open your hearts to hear his voice, on Sunday and the rest of the week. We are all on the same level, all broken and all in need of our Savior daily! So again, this is a good thing. With that in mind, let us pray for one another and LIFT ONE ANOTHER UP in Christ, and He will direct our paths. We will continue to have our struggles, yet – “It is our trust and dependence on Christ” that gives us the power to love one another.


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