Review of Experiential Worship in March/April 2005 issue of Worship Leader Magazine.
Bob Rognlien, NavPress
God isn't a concept to be explained, He should be encountered through the full gamut of human expression: physical, spiritual, intellectual and willful. This is the premise of Bob Rognlien's Experiential Worship, where throughout its pages he asserts that life-changing spiritual encounters occur when people are invited, through those facets, to experience God for themselves. Whether your church is labeled contemporary or traditional, pre-traditional or post-contemporary, Gen-X or postmodern is losing importance; those questions derive from the "relentless tide of cultural change" and often limit the holistic biblical experience of God. And while that is a big chunk of change to grab on to, Experiential Worship offers a clear guide to the worshiper navigating through life's ever-changing intellectual and social waters.
Rognlien clearly illustrates the emerging belief that worship should tap the wide range of historical worship traditions--then align them with modern communication advances to connect them to God's people today.
And Rognlien is compelling. Many books and ideas from the school of emerging worship will identify the positives and highlight the truth of diverse denominational practices (as opposed to focusing on the negatives of each); however, Experiential Worship takes this a necessary further step: identifying the four inherent human worship needs in order to have that experience of connectedness to the Father. These he pulls from Christ's Greatest Commandment where loving the Lord your God can parallel worshiping the Lord your God with all your heart (volition), soul (emotion), mind (intellect) and strength (physical expression).
With his use of pop culture and engaging stories, Rognlien communicates with an easy and interesting prose that flows eloquently into clean biblical interpretations and then ushers you into a deep understanding of interpreted Scripture. His examinations on worship through these four aspects of holistic praise are intriguing and insightful, useful for a psychological understanding of how humans can communicate with our Maker. This book is an invaluable tool for the pastors and worship leaders who desire to create a place where everyone is invited to experience the awesome, life-changing experience of God.