One creative approach in integrating the visual arts into the life of the local congregation involves employing an artist-in-residence. In return for studio space and appropriate monetary remuneration, the artist-in-residence is available to create visual arts for worship, to instruct worshipers about the nature of the visual arts in worship, and to involve members of the congregation in the design and fabrication of the arts in worship.
African-American preaching arises out of the cultural and religious experiences of the oppressed. It reaches people in their dislocation and relocates them in God and in the promise of a brighter future.
The renewal of worship in our era is largely concerned with the restoration of a God-centered focus in Christian celebration. By its very nature, however, the psychology of worship tends to reverse this focus, redirecting our concern to the worshiper and his or her needs. A biblical psychology of worship places the individual within the context of corporate celebration and covenantal responsibility. Worship celebrates the victory of Christ over authorities that place people in bondage. In this setting, the gospel of Christ brings healing and liberation.
The person who brings a wounded spirit into the setting of worship often finds it difficult to enter into the experience of worship. Paradoxically, it is the very act of worship that offers healing for those wounds, even though the pain may hinder the hurting Christian’s full participation in it.
A charismatic theology emphasizes a vital relationship with the Holy Spirit and the recovery of spiritual gifts, which are both experienced in worship.
In the Holiness-Pentecostal tradition of worship, the key element is praise. Praise is not only the praise of song but the praise of or testimony to God in this life. In worship, the Christian praises God for his character and for the deeds of salvation and healing God has wrought in the life of the worshiper.
Restoration theology of worship arises from the rejection of traditions and creeds in favor of Christ alone and Scripture alone. Consequently, all thinking about worship is shaped from this premise.
African-American theology of worship arises out of a deep sense of oppression and a high anticipation of liberation. In worship, African-Americans experience the redeeming work of Jesus Christ, which liberates them from sin and the power of the Evil One.
Wesleyan liturgical theology is deeply concerned to define worship as more than public acts. Worship has to do with all of life, with relationships, and with vocations. In deed and thought believers continually act out their relationship to Christ.
The roots of the traditional Quaker theology of worship are found in George Fox’s experience of the Inner Light—that sense of the divine and direct working of Christ in the soul. He came to believe and subsequently taught that the same experience is available to all. The purpose of worship, therefore, is to wait in silence and then respond to the presence and power of God.