I have been thinking further on this one, developing some thoughts which were simmering when I wrote my first post on this. I enjoy the process of developing my thinking, even if I need to revise my earlier views and as a consequence I have now re-edited the original post.
I very much appreciated several responses. I enjoyed Rach's post (with which I identify strongly!) and appreciated Joe's post, some valuable reflection (rather than reaction) by Tim Chesterton and these well chosen words What will enable this congregation to worship? from Sam.
I still believe there is a vital conversation for the church to be having, probably continuously, as each new generation of song writers bring their perspective to the field of contemporary worship. I also believe that some of the naff or theologically duff material needs to be critiqued somehow so that our pursuit of excellence (though not perfectionism) in worship is undiminished. Unlke a duff sermon, which will hopefully be forgotten by next week's far better sermon, duff worship songs can become part of our hymnody (of whatever style) and begin to affect our theology. I have met people who believe slightly odd things because they sung them. We believe and remember what we sing far more than what we hear, which William Booth used to admirable effect in the early songs of the Salvation Army. So we need to have space for an open, honest and constructive discussion about the content of our worship songs, even if some of that appears to be negative. And, in this interconnected world, there is merit in conducting such discussion online.
But I now think the main locus of such discussions needs primarily to be in our churches, with our worship leaders and church leaders. This may not immediately affect the output of the worship music machine that is the CCM industry, but it will help to develop understanding, inform the process of congregational song selection and equip the next generation of worship leaders. I am not aware of any church that creates a forum for discussion of what is sung, what it means, and how we understand the greater questions of what worship is and then how we effectively engage people in it, in song and otherwise. That would be a discussion worth having, because at heart it is about that most central of issues; our very relationship with God.
Perhaps you have had such a conversation in your church. What was the outcome?