Posted in Reviews

>Surprised by Worship by Travis Cottrell


HI RES COVER 0310330351_imageWhen I accepted the invitation to review Surprised by Worship by Travis Cottrell, it was with practically no knowledge of the author beyond the press and biographical information that had been emailed to me.  The little tidbits shared in the bio gave his claims to fame – travel with Beth Moore as her worship leader and high acclaims from LifeWay.  Everything I read left me expecting to find a book full tips from a professional worship leader on how to experience “true” worship combined with expressions of negativity toward the traditional Baptist worship “experience.” 

What I found instead was a complete – and very pleasant – surprise.

Although Cottrell is, indeed, a professional worship leader, Surprised by Worship actually has very little to do with worship services and everything to do with what it takes to truly live a life of worship. 

Using stories from his own life, Cottrell shows how worship is bound up in so much more than simply how we sing in church or even how we pray.  It is revealed in the fact that we have hope when there seems to be no earthly hope.  It catches us by surprise when we release our preconceptions as to what it must look like.  It flows freely when we find healing through emotional wounds that have prevented open fellowship and communion with one another.  It is brought to life when we trust our amazing Creator even when circumstances seem to be pulling every stitch of security from under our feet.  It overwhelms us when we finally decide to truly do things God’s way instead of our own.  And, it powerfully stands as inexplicable comfort in moments when we should be instead finding ourselves swallowed by the depths of grief. 

Cottrell is not familiar with worship because he is paid to lead it.  He is familiar with worship because of the many times he has been surprised by its presence, even – and possibly especially – in the most difficult of times. 

Surprised by Worship lives up to its title – it is indeed a surprise.  And, it is a book I would definitely recommend.

This book was sent to me for review by the {m} media collective


I am a homeschooling preacher's wife and managing editor for the Well Planned Gal. But, I also love to write just for the fun of it. I also process best through writing, and my thoughts tend to flow from things I learn through the Bible, interacting with my family, and moving through life in general. Thanks for joining me in my not quite ordinary journey.

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