I have been in colege ministry, and now that am out of the school setting and is now a worship leader in a bigger church and a bigger town In college, it was kinda easy to predict what songs would be appropriate for the lot because I was a student too, and for the four years, I was going trough every other thing the christian union was going trough. But now, in this main church, I get to the pulpit and I feel resistance. sometimes they just do not respond to the songs... I was wondering, whether you could help me tranition brethren.
First thing, I know this sounds like a cliche but, seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit when choosing songs from your repertoire or adding to it. You probably have a mix of age groups and a mix of tastes in Worship songs in the congregation, but don't concentrate on trying to please them or you'll drive yourself nuts or they will drive you nuts. Wherever you go you will find people in the congregation who don't like something, those people are more concerned with Sunday church service than God service and are usually in the minority. Don't I repeat DON"T try to be a congregation pleaser, be a GOD pleaser!! Here is my advice to you, 1. When choosing songs from your song list for Worship, pray for guidance first before you look at the list, then pour through the list and pull out the songs you feel you are LED to do, not just what you like or you think people will like. 2. Be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit in adding songs to your list, they might be old hymns or older contemporary as well as the current/new songs. So don't be afraid to have a good mix, go with the Spirit. 3. And most important, when you lead worship, lead by example! That is, Worship God with all your heart when you are at the pulpit and others will see your Worship and they will follow your example.
I hope this helps, remember you are Gods chosen leader. God chose you alone to this extremely high calling and all he asks is for your commitment to this calling and to love him and others with all your heart. Always sing from your heart and seek God first in all things and He will guide you. Read Proverbs 3. God bless, you are going to be an awesome child of God and an awesome Worship Leader. many blessings, Ian
I'm thinking that what is also very important is to interact and be friendly and interested in the people of your
congregation in addition to just during the service. Talk with them before and after, ask questions and get to
know them as individuals. Share some of your own self and personal stories. Learn their names. This is harder
for some people than others but really makes a world of difference.
There's several things to suggest.
First off - Ian's point below is spot on about listening to the Holy Spirit and taking cues from Him. You need to hear what He's saying and be carefully obedient, not from fear of failure, but from love.
Next - where was the congregation before you came along, worship-wise? If they've leapt from singing hymns every week to full-on Hillsongs, or even been required to just learn a whole bunch of stuff they never knew before then the transition can be painful. They will feel dislocated, as though they have been dumped by their 'own' church.
Get to know as many of the congregation, at least casually, as you can. That way they will be able to feel that you aren't 'a new broom, come to sweep clean' but will know that you're a real person. Try to woo them, speaking words of love and kindness, rather than exhortation and drive.
Find out from others what has helped them come before God in the past and see how you can give them 'hooks' that enable them to connect with what you are doing.
Let us know how you're getting on.