Hey there! I'll bet that title got your attention! I wanted to take a few moments today and talk about some of my experiences in leading Worship. Well, overall, that will probably be a reoccuring theme in most of my posts.
So I guess I should start off by saying I've been saved for just a little over 10 years. I've been a part of worship programs in every church I've ever attended in that time--from the small (a dozen or so) to the large (over 1000+) in some capacity. I've played in independent worship groups and founded or lead independent worship groups. Additionally, I've been playing music overall for about 35 of my 46 years. I think the interesting thing about that is my experience as a musician hasn't necessarily been an attribute to worship ministry. Some of you reading this right now are wondering how music experience could not or would not be an enhancement to worship ministry, while some of you are nodding your head knowingly! All in due time grasshopper...all in due time!
Have you ever known someone who "knew" so much about something no one could tell them anything?! Someone might have an experience or some information that would be beneficial to them, but because they were the "expert" on the subject, they refused to listen to any outside suggestions!? You may be a master electrician...however, it may be of interest to you that the wire you're getting ready to grab hold of is "hot" (has current running through it)!
Overall, I've had to un-learn more stuff I thought I knew about music by far more than I've learned since participating in worship ministry! One really big example of this would be in secular music a performance is all about presentation: the sound system and the lights, the way the musicians move, the ebb and flow of the set list, the way you're dressed, etc., etc.. In worship ministry, these things are nice luxuries to have; but the whole thrust of the program is about the flow (in the Holy Spirit), and rarely (if ever) have those two criteria ever overlapped!
I've seen church worship programs that had production values on par with a Las Vegas show, complete with stage managers cuing standard bearers and flag wavers while the sound and light crew are coordinating with each other via wirless microphones ("house up on 10...cue the guitar solo in 3, 2, 1..."), that had as much movement of the Holy Spirit as...well...a Las Vegas show!
Likewise, I've seen a backwoods brother or sister with no formal music training (i.e., they not only sing through their noses, they talk through them!), play an old Sears guitar with 5 dead strings with a cracked bridge and a warped neck while singing through a Ronco Karoake machine in a sanctuary with 2 60ww lightbulbs! And they ushered in the Presence of the Holy Spirit where everyone was moved!
Isn't that just like God to totally mess up our perceptions and programs. The one thing I've learned so far is that IF there is a routine, it's His to make. My best effort is usually dropping off MY program and MY routine at the door, and trying to stay out of the way and being prepared to