4 Things Every Worship Leader Should Know
Over the years, it's normal to progress, grow and experience the presence God more intimately. I remember the first time as I played my guitar in church, a young lady was baptized with the Holy Spirit. I did not notice what was going on! I was so nervous, playing the two notes I had learned. Do you remember when you had an experience where God embraced you? Where it pretty much seemed that He was listening and caring for you at that very moment. This is not something we can manufacture. However, over and over we see worship leader trying so hard to falsely create this environment. The way I look at it, there are many of worship leaders who could benefit from simply getting closer to God, to then be able to lead the church to Him. Here are four things every worship leader should know.
1. Know your Bible.
If you are a young worship leader this is my first advice to you. Read your Bible. Meditate on it, the stories, advices, miracles, reprimands and even the genealogies. You never know exactly how God wants to see you. When your Bible knowledge increases, the Holy Spirit then breathes His statements, transitions, prayers, and godly compositions as you worship. Christ's words are the only words guaranteed to produce faith in people (Romans 10:17). No one needs my interesting ideas about Jesus, the church does not need my words. They need faith! And my words will not produce faith, no ones will. The Bible is your greatest tool for ministry (2 Timothy 3:16)! If you have not read the entire Bible, consider devoting enough time and effort to reading it, you will understand your God better and actually get to know Him!
I was already working in the ministry for three years before I finally finished reading the whole Bible for the first time. After reading all of it, I was a changed man and a more effective leader. Seriously, the best gift you can give yourself, church and the community you serve is knowing the Word of God and applying it.
2. Always Be Submissive and Open to Criticism.
Leader, you will never be at peace until you understand it completely. I was the worst in this regard for a long time, dreading every suggestion for songs or any feedback that didn't feed my ego. Many approached me after the services and offered a suggestion. What I took from it is that I wasn't good enough, if I was I would have gotten a high-five! Of course, there are many who do not know how to give constructive criticism. But we need to understand that we all have different tastes, and even Jesus couldn't please everyone. At times, it's even difficult to accept criticism from our leader or pastor.
He said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given me." Most times when a leader is not submissive to human authority, the problem has deeper roots. The problem is serious, it's an issue of submission not only to a leader or pastor but to Jesus. I learned that my submission to my leaders is a simple extension of my submission to my Lord. Learn how to receive criticism, even if not in the way you want to hear. In love, in time, you will be a better servant, a better musician, and a much better leader. But be warned, if you are not submissive to your leaders, you are not submitting to Christ. The Bible says if you're not submissive to Christ then it amounts to submission to the enemy (Matthew 12:30).
3. Disciples! Make Disciples! Make Disciples!
You are called to make disciples for the edification of the church. This means that you have to do the slow and difficult work to share what God gave you with other people. It takes time, a long time. It's exhausting and painful, but it will add value to the group and the congregation. In his book Worship Matters, Bob Kauflin reports that he has about 6 drummers. It is their obligation to be in all the rehearsals, in the services and all the meetings. He rotates the musicians, and this prevents the case if someone has an emergency, the group will not be short-handed. John Maxwell says, "a leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows it to others." The hardest thing to do is find a replacement for yourself, but only by constantly making disciples can you become irreplaceable! The benefits are enormous. If God is willing to greatly increase the size and scope of your ministry, let Him. Never think that God doesn't have someone who can do a much better job than you. The worship team is not yours, music and worship are not for you and all glory is due to Jesus. Remember you're not a rock star!
4. Rest and Recharge.
It seems that God calls those who are not able to do it, but, in fact, He enables everyone He calls. This point serves only if you have disciples as mentioned above. Sometimes you have to analyze the progress of the group you lead. Sit and Worship God from the sidelines. Note what needs improving, at times you may even realize a few things that can be changed that you would never notice from the pulpit. In fact, you need to rest and recharge. At times, Jesus isolated himself to have moments with God, alone. Do the same, follow the example of Jesus. If you are giving every effort, then you will need to rest! Always be willing to give your all to God, He does not owe anyone.
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