Worship music is an integral part of today’s church. It allows us to move beyond simply hearing truth, to expressing that truth back to our Creator. It’s a dynamic experience where His message becomes our own. It’s a catalyst for change that can transform who we are and how we see God.
Gateway Church has become synonymous with such powerful expressions of worship. But it has been a journey of discovery and response to what God is doing in this fast-growing church.
“When I first started at the church, there was a need for a deeper understanding of what worship is all about,” says Thomas Miller, Gateway’s worship pastor. “The person who was most passionate about worshipping the Lord was our pastor, Robert Morris. He was the primary worship leader of the church.”
Inspired by Morris’ passion for praise, Miller and his burgeoning team set out to make worship an even more essential part of Gateway’s culture.
The church that began ten years ago with 200 people has grown into an influencing and equipping center that ministers weekly to thousands of people. At its center is a vibrant worship ministry that has become the heartbeat of one of today’s fastest-growing congregations.
Situated in the suburbs of the Dallas/Fort Worth area, each of their campuses is strategically located, enabling the church to minister to a variety of communities. Yet Gateway’s diversity is more than geographical within the Metroplex.
“Our church is a good representation of many denominations,” Miller remarks. “We have people from all spiritual walks.”
While the congregation is diverse, Gateway maintains a focused, foundational mission.
As Miller simply says, “We want to help people experience God to the fullest extent possible.”
Gateway’s worship ministry reflects this mission by crafting universal songs of faith that will resonate with every believer.
“We try to write songs that will speak to everyone and their walk in life,” Miller says. “The songs that we write speak to both our congregation and the body of Christ.”
Indeed, songs birthed by the leaders at Gateway have moved beyond their congregation into churches around the world; modern-day classics such as “The More I Seek You,” “You, You Are God,” “Come Thou Fount, Come Thou King” and the powerful, Dove Award-winning “Revelation Song.”
This remarkable music flows from an equally remarkable collective. Comprised of worship leaders, singers and songwriters, Gateway’s worship team offers a rich tapestry of experience, talent and perspective. Team members include Miller, Walker Beach, Sion Alford, Zach Neese, David Moore, Jason Tam and Dove Award-winning artist Kari Jobe. Filled with more than 40 contributors, the group is committed to expressing how God is moving through and speaking to the church.
“We don’t want to sing anything that God isn’t doing in our body,” Miller says.
Yet the worship team not only reflects, but also often informs, what’s happening at Gateway.
“We pray that God would speak a fresh word through us,” Miller says. “We pray that He shows what He wants our congregation to sing; those things He wants our church to embrace.”
Gateways latest project, God Be Praised, centers around the theme of the victory we have in Christ, a theme that is central to a large majority of the songs that Gateway has recorded. Songs from the project—such as “Victory,” “O The Blood,” “By The Grace of God Alone” and “God Be Praised”—all focus on the victory we have in Jesus.
“These songs,” says Miller, “birthed out of our church, are now part of the center and fabric of the DNA of freedom we have at Gateway. I am praying that the music from this album will be songs for people and churches everywhere to declare the absolute, complete, overwhelming victory we all have in Jesus. Since He conquered it all, we are more than conquerors and can live a life of complete victory. When we live in victory and freedom, we live a life that naturally overflows in praise to God. The reason why we titled the project God Be Praised is because those three words sum up our victory: God Be Praised!”
“There are a lot of gifted people at churches,” he notes. “But it’s always important to explore why we do what we do… even though most churches have music as a part of their service, it’s invaluable to understand why.”
For Miller and his team, the why is clear: worshiping God through music can profoundly affect every part of our lives.
“Our desire is to minister to people,” he says. “To equip them, release them and make sure we’re doing everything we can to lead them to the Lord. That’s what’s going to change people’s lives for eternity.”