Okay...you feeling like an absolute wretch yet? Now that your old buddy, Todd, is now blasting all your weaknesses as a worship leader? If you're thinking of bailing on this series, hang in there. I only hack on you because I've got all the same junk in my worship leading ministry. Let's just all be messes together, 'kay?
I was a slow-adopter of Hillsong tunes. (Still am, actually...) To me, the songs were fun to listen to but I didn’t imagine they would work in the service. Until I heard “Mighty To Save.”
I listened to it constantly! In my mind, I could see my congregation - hands uplifted, singing their guts out on Sunday morning. How could they not? It was such a great song! I made a chart, sent the mp3 to the band and we started rehearsing it. Rehearsals went great - especially that big ending when the band ended on the V and the crowd erupted in praise. This song was going to be so good! Except it wasn’t.
The song went great. As expected - we had rehearsed it enough! I could feel myself getting excited as we neared the end. This was it! The big finish! We ended that last bridge and hit that chord.......and nothing. It was pretty painful to realize "this was not a good idea."
There was no applause. No shouting. Just sideways glances from my band for making them do something so weird. Wasn't I supposed to know this congregation? I'm sure I recovered, but it was hard to ignore that chord ringing through the worship center. As Seinfeld once said, "That's a pretty big matzoh ball hanging out there."
Most worship leaders I know work hard each week. Most of us have everything in place when it comes time to gather. We show up prepared and we invest in the people who make up our teams. Our laziness is a rare brand - it’s mental laziness.
We don’t read enough.
We don’t think enough.
We’re not good at asking “why” we do church the way we do.
We don’t make time to have a right philosophy.
Most weeks, we’re content to plug in a group of popular songs are and hit our marks just like every other set.
When we don’t carve out time to think about worship, something scary happens: we aren’t creative. We mimic what we hear on albums and what we see on videos, which many times fails miserably (V CHORD!) Your creativity extends to far more than buying all the right videos or developing a really good cover band. You've got to craft the service to meet the needs of your people - and that takes a lot of hard work. Try to build some time into your schedule each week to simply think about worship. No guitar, no Spotify, no YouTube. Get creative - not for the sake of being creative - but for the sake of the people you're leading.
(For other posts in the series, check the ARCHIVE.)