Karina Cowan
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“For worship to be true, lasting and authentic it must be based on heart authenticity AND solid theology. If it is not, our worship will fall apart during times of duress in our lives when we don't feel God like we used to.” –Tim Milner, How Right Worship Changes Us

Chris Burke has been serving in ministry for over 12 years. Currently, he is serving as the Tech Director at Center Point Church, in PEI. Center Point has 2 campuses on the island, one in Montague and the other in Charlottetown. “I’m equipping people to serve in ways that can be worship for them. Whether it’s being a part of a worship team, tech team or whatever it may be. One way or another, we all can worship. Sometimes worship takes the form of music, but it can also look like painting or serving communion. Whatever it may be, I want to help people engage in worship in their own unique way.”

“There’s no right or wrong way to worship. It’s all about whatever connects you with God.”

“There’s no right or wrong way to worship. It’s all about whatever connects you with God.” Stepping up on the platform each Sunday, Chris views his role as a worship leader in one way, to lead people to God. “We don’t just do that through music, but we do it by our example. If I’m not engaging with God daily, especially when leading on a Sunday, then how can I expect anyone else to?”

Worship changes us. It stirs something deep within us, it gives us time to meditate on the words and often even commit them to memory. To an outsider, the act of standing, or raising your arms while surrounded by tens of dozens of people all singing the same melodious chorus, may seem a bit odd. Just think about it though, people sing together in the strangest places: rock concerts, sporting events, birthdays, weddings, funerals. Singing together tends to bind us together.

“It enables us to spend extended periods of times expressing the same thoughts and passions. And when it comes to the church, it has significant implications.” –Bob Kauflin, Sovereign Grace Ministries

I think if we took a poll of church leaders, religious writers, and pastors alike, they would all agree that worship affects the whole church. It changes the culture. It creates unity and focus. It is the spiritual heartbeat of a congregation. If we look at Scripture, the Bible contains over 400 references to singing and 50 direct commands to sing. We're commanded twice in the New Testament to sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs (Ephesians 5:19;Colossians 3:16). We are created to worship.

So naturally, leading worship bears some weight. Playing on a worship team weekly, in front of approximately 300 worshipers (between the 2 campuses), Chris acknowledges the importance of the role he takes on when leading worship. “Worship sticks us together. We all come to church every week with our own problems and baggage and distractions, but when we come together in worship, those things fall away. It’s important to set aside time to leave the stresses of life at the door, the things that drag us down, and come together and be united in worshipping God. It’s powerful.”

"Worship sticks us together. We all come to church every week with our own problems and baggage and distractions, but when we come together in worship, those things fall away."

Even with our daily woes checked at the door, worship, or more commonly music confused with the term worship, is one of the most debated subjects in the church. So much so that it can become more distracting than helpful. Without our focus on Jesus, and connecting with Him, it’s easy to get sidelined with banter over personal style, loudness and whether or not Jesus condones drumming in church. One of the foremost debates on the subject revolves around the fine line between leading worship and performing. “For us, that’s probably one of biggest things that we talk about when new people join a team. We’re not there for us. It’s not about people hearing the sweet licks that I can play. We are there to be in the background really.” If worshipping is important enough to be mentioned hundreds of times in the Bible, it’s certain that God has equipped people to lead us in right worship, without the distraction of an overachieving vocalist or fame-crazed guitarist. “It comes through educating. We have a lot of people on our team who come from a performance background, who have made names for themselves in the music world. All they know if performance. So part of my role is to work with them, and show them why it’s important that we are focusing on God. And it’s definitely a process. Sometimes it takes constant reminders to shift our focus to Jesus.”

As if Chris wasn’t busy enough exercising his God-given musical talents through leading worship weekly, and fathering 2 boys with wife Jennifer, he’s also in a band. “we the rescued” is a Christian, pop/rock group of 3 islanders devoted to a heart of worship and love for Jesus Christ. In the spring of 2016, the trio released their first EP “Living Proof”, made of 7 original songs. The album pulls influences from such artists as John Mark McMillan, The Digital Age, and even a hint of The Eagles.

Keep an eye out for these guys at some major upcoming events: East Coast Music Awards, Covenant Awards and Jesus to the Nations 2017. www.wetherescued.com

“My goal is to see people be genuine in their worship. I don’t want people to be hiding or acting like someone else, so that people will think that they’re ok. I want people to be able to come to that Throne Room, as they are, and meet God. I want to encourage worship that is as genuine as it cane be.”

“My goal is to see people be genuine in their worship. I don’t want people to be hiding or acting like someone else, so that people will think that they’re ok. I want people to be able to come to that Throne Room, as they are, and meet God. I want to encourage worship that is as genuine as it cane be.”