Hi, everybody! I'm brand new here, so I thought I'd get some input from the more experienced among us. I've been in charge of worship at my church for about a year (I'm in college, taking music and religion courses), and I've learned a ton just from trial and error.
But I was hoping to get some advice from all of you... what formed you in your early worship leading years? I'm looking for anything here... books, studies, methods, or even just a concept to think about.
This might help (and I know I'll have to read this again and fully study it: underline, notes). Look in Christianbook.com for worship leader books by Dr. Ron Kenoly. There is an easy reading book called the Effective Worship Leader and it covers a lot of stuff.
When my wife and I first started leading worship, it was in a church body with a very traditional style that wanted to try out a "contemporary" worship service. Our initial team members each had some past worship experiences (see my P.S. below:)), but nothing together. So we met one evening a week to practice. We'd practice for about an hour, and then pray. Most weeks, our prayer time lasted almost an hour as well!
One particular team member was initially not at all comfortable praying out loud in a group, but grew confident in doing so through those weekly, intimate times. Several years later, he reflected that the most profound impact God had made in his life during that time had nothing to do with the music, but instead with his prayer life.
So, pray with your worship team members every time you get together. Pray before you practice. Pray before you set up. Pray before and while you're picking songs, even while considering songs that you might want to do in the future. And then pray when you're done, acknowledging that any success or accomplishment belongs to God.
Commit it all to the Lord in prayer, lay it before Him, and ask Him to lead.
I know that's just elementary Christianese, but it really doesn't get any more practical than that:) When a worship team loses its spiritual focus, all kinds of problems will ensue.
You can never pray too much!
Grace and peace!
P.S. You're at GCC?!?! My wife and I graduated from there in 1996! We had some great worship experiences at Salt Company, Warriors for Christ, and just with some friends late at night in the chapel. Truly formative worship experiences!
Yep, have to agree Chris, that's what got me through. God will equip you and guide you.
Take on board all the practical advice you can get from experienced worship leaders - I wish I could give more, but am pretty much a beginner myself - but allow the Holy Spirit to work through you on your worship journey.
I wish you every blessing with your worship, you'll be wonderful.
i know it's hard to do, leading worship at your church all the time, but visit other houses of worship, worship God in different venues, get outside your comfort zone. give God an opportunity to stretch your understanding of worship.
some churches have online services, that you can participate in (newspring.cc, lifechurch.tv, northpointonline.tv, the list goes on). this has helped me more than any of the music or theology classes i took in college.
Check out David, long before he was a warrior and a king (places of leadership) he was a worshipper in the fileds when nobody else was around. He developed a very personal and intimate relationship with his God which in turn gave him victory over the lion and the bear....
Before you can lead someone up the mountain and to that intimate place, you have to know how to get there yourself. No amount of practicing with a praise team, perfecting a musical/vocal talent etc... can substitute for personal worsip time.....People will follow true leaders!!!
One of the greatest acts of worship in the Bible is Abraham's willingness to offer Isaac....Sometimes acts of "true worship" is quite painful........but God always provides (Jehovah Jireh!!!)
Remember, our ability to lead other into the awesome presence of our God solely depends on our ability to get their ourselves. Otherwise we're just singing songs, playing church and going through the motions.