Developing a vision for your team can be a daunting task. Where to start? Too many of us don't even think about it. We pick out songs. We schedule teams. We hold rehearsal. We pull off services on Sunday. Rinse and repeat.
But is that all we're called to do?
What does the Bible have to say about this rhythm? Of course, the Bible doesn't say much about being a worship leader. But there is enough talk about worship to know that what we're doing is important. And there's enough of an emphasis placed on leadership to know that what we're doing is extremely valuable. And there's this little verse in four that says, "For the equipping of the saints, for the work of service, and for the building up of the body of Christ" (Eph. 4:12).
So if that's what we're called to do, we're not succeeding unless we are empowering others, unless we're helping the body and bride of Christ find her voice in praising Jesus. If at best we're executing a mundane routine, at worst showing off our talent, there's a problem.
But I'm not a pastor," you may say. "That verse is talking about pastors." May I suggest that being a worship leader is a pastoral role, whether you possess credentials or not? Leading others is about shepherding their hearts closer to their maker. It's about shining a spotlight upon the beauty of Jesus.
"But I don't have time." I can understand that. Some of you are full-time worship pastors. But some of you are volunteers who squeeze time in the margins to simply make it happen.
Hear me out.
I'm not advocating 20 more hours in your week. I want to help you frame the weekly routines in a way that is spiritual, biblical and healthy for you, your team and your church. Sound good? Here we go:
Discipleship and improvement should be a constant. We never outgrow the need for discipleship. We never arrive at a level where improvement isn't necessary. But we don't always need to emphasize the same things. That's why these questions are so powerful.
Question No. 1: What Does My Team Need?
Think about it. What is the glaring hole in your team that you've been ignoring? What needs to happen? Musical training? Spiritual challenge? Devotional moments? The list is literally endless, but the goal isn't to cram it all in at once. The goal is to come up with one answer at the time of asking the question. Then act on it.
When I first became a worship pastor, some structure and standards needed to be set. A vision needed to be cast. So I emphasized a standard of excellence to build that into our culture. At other times, we needed to emphasize our spiritual readiness.
So what does your team need most right now?
Question No. 2: What Does My Church Need?
What is your church walking through? What has your pastor been preaching? What season of life are they in? This will influence everything from your song choices to your creative programming.
I remember we walked through a season of loss as a church when one of our pastors was killed in a horrible accident. It wasn't a season of upbeat celebration. It would have been insensitive. We mourned and we worshiped in quiet contemplation.
A great way to get a pulse on this is to have conversations with your church. As Andi Rozier challenged us, "Get out of the green room."
So what does your church need most right now?
Question No. 3: What Do I Need?
Do I need to spend more time with my spouse? How are my kids? Is my relationship with Jesus flourishing? It's crazy how much these questions reveal about our habits and priorities.
Be honest. Don't just buckle down and keep cranking. Evaluate if your life is on a healthy path. Are you building what you set out to build? Or are you lost in a whirlwind of impressing people?
If you're willing, let's talk about your challenges in the comments. How is the health of your ministry?
David Santistevan is a worship pastor at Allison Park Church in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
This article originally appeared at davidsantistevan.com.
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