A poor rehearsal can make you want to quit music altogether.
Here at the Todd Blog we want you to have a good rehearsal. If you haven’t read Part 1 and Part 2, I’d encourage you to check it out and give us some feedback! Today’s our last installment in the series and I hope somebody out there has benefitted from the ideas and encouragement over the past few weeks.
We’ve talked about being a good leader and being a positive person in the life of your team, but what’s left? What would be the third component of a good, strong rehearsal?
BE A PASTOR
As worship leaders, we often get confused about our responsibilities. Some worship leaders think it’s their job to whip the crowd into a frenzy. Some think they’re supposed to create thought-provoking, question-raising art. Others think it’s their job to make sure their music stays as close to some cultural musical flavor as possible.
Those things aren’t evil. But they’re not our first priority. If you want a good rehearsal, you’ve got to PASTOR.
Pastor Your Team
Pastoring your team is hard for two reasons:
First, musicians are weird and they’re usually not that great at creating and sustaining healthy relationships. Many times a musician’s insecurities will completely mask his or her true identity . It’s hard to love and spiritually care for people who aren’t that great at letting somebody into their world.
Secondly, because you’re a musician and a worship leader, you probably don’t like all that relational/counseling/spiritual mentor stuff already.
So how can you pastor them?
- Be honest. That doesn’t mean baring your soul every week, but live a life of openness with your team. Let them see those things that both excite and discourage you.
- Make the listening moments count. In those moments where there’s nobody tuning or practicing or jamming, make sure you’ve got something substantial to say. A little prep work will turn those small conversations into huge spiritual growth moments.
- Ask the hard questions. Life’s too short to beat around the bush. If you want to know something, ask it. If you’ve consistently shown this person you love them and want what’s best for their life, those hard questions will get a lot easier.
Pastor Your Congregation
This one’s gonna’ be shorter – pick songs and prayers and scripture based on spiritual formation. Don’t pick stuff because it’s cool or challenging. Pick stuff because it’s going to inform their faith and teach them the worship of God.
Do that, and you’ve added a huge pastoral element into your worship leading.
Imagine that the next time you go to the doctor, he walks in smoking a cigarette. He looks horrible. His skin is pale and his eyes are bloodshot. He’s stumbling over his words and can’t remember your name, even though he’s looked at your chart seven times already.
Would you trust that guy? Would you let him write a prescription for you?
As a worship leader, you’ve got to know your weak spots and you’ve got to work on them. Examine them, analyze them and go to God’s Word to do the work. If your spiritual life is a wreck, no amount of hit songs or media elements are going to make your team healthy. You don’t have to be perfect, but you do need to be healthy. (This should not surprise any of you, although I think poor spiritual health is an epidemic among worship leaders.)
Your church has entrusted you with a huge portion of the congregation’s life. For many of us, we’re responsible for the first 30 minutes of every single person’s church experience every Sunday.
That ought to scare you. It ought to drive to prayer and to hard work to make sure that when you take the stage, you’re up to the challenge of your calling.
Do not phone it in. Do not lead on default. Do not think you’ve got all the skills you need. You don’t.
Go to God and work hard.