Being a worship leader in a church is one of the most difficult ministry positions. You are expected to know about everything from sound technology to the latest music trends to theology to theater lighting. You are often a lightning rod for complaints about music style, musicians and even stage dress. And while you balance all of these challenges you must keep your real goal in mind which is leading people to worship our glorious God.
So what are the three characteristics you need to do this effectively?
I believe they are the same characteristics that are essential for any ministry position. Here are they are and my thoughts on how they apply to a worship leader.
- Character. This is the most important of the three. Without a solid Christian character no one will be truly effective in any Christian ministry. Are you a person of integrity with a heart seeking after God? Your first priority should be developing your personal relationship with God and allowing God to transform your character so that it reflects the image of Christ.
- Concepts. Know what you need to know. Worship today covers so many topics. In addition to musical understanding you also need to be familiar with worship technology, effective lighting, video, drama and visual art. And speaking of musical understanding, you should understand the various instruments in a rhythm section and ideally traditional orchestral instruments so you can communicate effectively with them. Don’t forget the need for solid music reading skills, basic music theory, rehearsal techniques and possibly conducting. On top of all of this add a firm grasp of theology and the bible.
- Competence. You must have the necessary skills. Knowledge by itself is not enough. You also need to have the musical and artistic skills to effectively lead others in worship and hold the respect of the musicians you oversee. Worship leaders are expected to be able to play at least guitar or piano and sing; have some competence in songwriting, public communication and bible teaching; and have the people and organizational skills necessary to maintain an effective ministry.
Are you feeling a little overwhelmed?
The goal of this short post is not to scare you away from worship ministry but to help you understand the full scope of worship leadership. Being able to sing well or strum a guitar is only the very beginning. A heart for God and worship will only take you so far as a leader.
So how can you gain these three characteristics?
Let me encourage you take a look at the worship program of study at Worship Arts Conservatory. It is specifically designed to address these three areas. Get started by clicking below.