Canadian born, Ben Cantelon is currently serving as a worship leader at Holy Trinity Brompton in London and is a part of the Worship Central training team along with Tim Hughes and Al Gordon. Ben leads worship at churches and events all over the world and is a gifted songwriter.
"What does it mean to be a follower of Jesus?” asks Ben Cantelon. “Doesn’t it mean in some way that we allow our eyes to be opened? Doesn’t it mean that we are ready to see the world differently, to let our vision be directed by God’s Spirit? Doesn’t it mean seeing it in color - being open to the full range of possibilities, opportunities, needs and challenges that God has created us for?”
As metaphors go, the idea of living life in full color offers Ben Cantelon plenty of material. Throughout Everything In Color - his second full-length album - the Canadian-born worship leader and songwriter, draws worshippers to a fuller, brighter view of God.
Ben’s childhood was rich in both music and faith. His father, Brent, is pastor of Christian Life Assembly Church in Vancouver, a position he took over from his own father, Don Cantelon.
From an early age, Ben’s musical talent was evident. And by the time he had reached his teens, he felt challenged to focus his artistic energy on worship alone.
Having met and played keyboards with Tim Hughes while leading a conference in Vancouver, Ben was offered the opportunity of travelling with, and eventually joining full time, Soul Survivor, in Watford, on London’s northern outskirts. The move turned out to be a good one.
“I’d never really led worship myself all that often before coming to the UK,” says Ben. “People used to ask me to have a go, and I tried; but it wasn’t anything that I was really all that passionate about at the time. Then, after about 10 months of living in the UK, I really felt the Lord say, ‘Ben, why aren’t you leading worship?’ To me it seemed that there were so many others who were great at it; why was I needed? But God kept pressing it and eventually I said ‘God, you have to do it – I’m not pushing any doors.’ So I left it there.”
“A week later, I got a call from Mike Pilavachi (co-founder/leader of Soul Survivor) saying that he felt God telling him that I needed to lead worship. It was incredible – a real God moment."
Seven years on and Ben is an established worship leader and songwriter within the UK and beyond. In 2007, Kingsway released Ben’s first project, an EP titled Daylight Breaks Through. Then there was the co-write of “Happy Day” with Tim Hughes, a move from Soul Survivor to join Tim at Holy Trinity Brompton, London and marriage.
Ben is now working with Worship Central, a worship training school under the auspices of Holy Trinity; and his songs continue to make an impact within the global church. In 2009, Kingsway released Ben’s debut, full-length solo album, Running After You. He was also featured on Worship Central’s debut live album, Spirit Break Out. Each project showcases Ben’s clear commitment to crafting great music without sacrificing accessibility.
“Our songs, our sounds and our creativity should only ever be the tool that helps us worship - never the focus. For no matter how bright or bold our work, it will never be a match for the fullness in Christ.”
According to Ben, it’s vital that worship leaders remember that they are just that - - worship leaders, not worship explorers or worship sprinters. “Those of us who play in church have a responsibility to lead our congregations, not leave them behind.”
As he sees it, these are exciting times for sung worship. Global uncertainty has settled over politics, economics and more, and while, as he says, “it is tempting to reduce things to black and white... worship has a role to play in introducing the color. Worship reminds us that God is far bigger than any of us, far brighter than any of our gloom and far more real than any of our denial.”
“So in these days of double-dip recessions and global uncertainty, we worship leaders have a unique opportunity in front of us. We need to help people to open whatever situation they face to God, not try to hide it away.”
Featured in These Lists
From contemporary worship to traditional hymns, here are Christian songs about heaven. The Kingdom of Heaven, the throne of God, angels crying holy holy holy, the return of Christ, our sanctification complete, no sickness, no death and no tears, rejoicing, eternal life -- these are just a few of the many words and ideas that come to mind as we think about heaven.
Prayer is a vital part of a Christian's relationship with God - it is our conversation with our Creator who knows us intimately and loves us deeply. And prayer isn't just talking, but can be singing as well. We can sing out our heart's cry, just as much as we can speak, whisper, or think our prayers. Here is a list of songs about prayer.
Do you ever wonder if God is still in control of this world? It's normal to wonder that, but at the same time, we need to keep reminding ourselves that God is indeed all-powerful. In spite of all our circumstances, the power of God is real and relevant. When we sing about his power, our hearts are filled with hope, courage, and renewed confidence to face another day. These are the songs that remind us of the powerful God we serve.
The Holy Spirit is God with us — today, here and now. Through the Holy Spirit, we have the presence of God. He is our Counselor who comforts and convicts. Through the Holy Spirit, God is mighty and powerful, but He is also soft and subtle. He whispers truth that is timely and personal, while at the same time eternal. These are the songs that teach about the Holy Spirit and invite God to move among us with His presence.
When we sing about God's grace and we believe the truth deep in our hearts, it affects our lives. We live with more compassion. We extend more mercy. We feel more empathy. This is why worship songs about grace and mercy are so important to the church. Every day and every week, through song and word, we must remind ourselves about the nature of God who is full of grace. What we receive from God, we extend to others. This is the full cycle of worship.
Wonderful Counsellor, King of Kings, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God reveals Himself through the sacred communication of His name. As we are named with a purpose to be known, God is named so that we may know Him with purpose. And because we know Him, we praise His name eternally. Here is a list of songs focusing on His name.