Last week I wanted to encourage some of our worship leaders. Here is what I shared with them.
God is able to prepare you in unique ways to lead the songs you choose. Look for little clues during the week about how you can make the morning personal. When you lead on Sunday you want to be able to share a small piece of yourself with the congregation so that they can see how God is working the message of the songs/morning out in your own life.
The most important thing you can do after reading, meditating on, and praying through the text, is to sit down with no distractions and listen/sing completely through each song in order and see what your heart and mind tell you about how you should transition to the next song. Sometimes you will feel like you need to go immediately into the next song, and other times unique lyrical connections between the songs will present themselves to you.
This is the practical voice of God. As we “work out” our leadership, God “works through” us to communicate what he wants to communicate. When I fail as a worship leader, it usually is because I have not spent enough time on this step and I am just leading songs.
The greatest misnomer in worship leadership is calling the person up front the “song leader.” You are not a song leader; you are a worship leader. The parallel Hebrew term is “cantor,” which means “leader of prayer.”
Have a prayerful attitude throughout the week and keep the songs in your mind and you will do well. Then just have fun. In the end, however, God interacts with us like the famous film Chariots of Fire communicates, where the runner says,
“When I run, I feel God’s pleasure.”
As you use your gift with a heart to please him you will feel his pleasure, and there is no greater feeling.
In what other ways do you prepare to lead worship?