2016 has been an amazing year for me, it has included strong worship ministry, a return to choir leading, great overseas ministry and awesome family times. This blog has been a successful part of that journey with almost 690,000 visits from 280,000 visitors in over 180 countries. Here are my top worship posts of 2016.
No matter how long I have been leading worship, there are always areas that I need to improve on. When you are doing well, it is too easy to get comfortable. But the truth is, none of us ever arrives. My prayer is that this list challenges you, like it challenges me, to move ahead with what God has called us to do!
Sometimes I lead worship and sometimes I play in the band. Both are important roles and have specific responsibilities to do them well. As both a leader and a player/singer, here are my ten most important rules as a team member:
Have you ever been in a great worship service and the worship leader and team seemed to disappear and your complete focus turned to worshiping Jesus?
Strong worship leaders know that worship is never about them, it’s about putting our gaze and attention on Jesus. Here are some keys to leading people toward Jesus in worship.
This year I’ve had some huge rehearsals. Many rehearsals have included a 12 member worship band, 90 voice choir and 40 piece orchestra. Solid prep work is essential for excellent rehearsals. Here is an extensive check-list to help you with many of the details.
I have spent many days and evenings at rehearsals. It is the price you pay if you want to do music at a good musical level. It is the price you pay if you want to get past the music and be able to worship God freely.
I have had rehearsals with orchestra’s, choirs, marching bands, studio sessions, vocal sections, brass & string sections and worship bands in Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa, the Caribbean and North America. Along the way I have picked up a few ideas on how to have a good rehearsal. Here is what I have learned so far:
Picking great songs for your congregation and worship band is one of the most important tasks of a worship leader. Great songs have a sense of God’s Spirit on them. Great worship songs make you want to sing them again and again. Great songs cause your spirit to rise in worship to the Lord.
Picking great songs for worship is one of the most important skills a worship leader needs to learn. There are many different kinds and levels of worship songs. Some songs are written about God, some songs are written to express our feelings, some songs are sung prayers, some songs are upbeat praise songs and some songs are pure worship to God. And many Christian songs are performance songs and really don’t fall into the worship category.
There are fast songs, medium songs and slow songs. There are difficult songs and easy songs. But what are the best songs for us to sing with our congregations? What songs help our congregations to sing with all their hearts and connect with God?
Here is my philosophy of picking worship songs distilled from 10 years of travelling, writing charts for Praisecharts.com and over 25 years of leading congregations in worship
In any quality organization there are codes of conduct and concrete expectations. A number of years ago I attended a worship conference at Gateway Church in Dallas and was totally impressed by their worship team. Based on Gateway’s code of conduct and my own experience, here are my standards and guidelines for my worship team.
How are you doing as a worship leader? How do you know if you are a good worship leader? Let me suggest a few guidelines that will help to quantify your leadership.
Strong worship leaders develop good attitudes and habits. They keep their heart, mind and spirit right before God and man. Check out these things that strong leaders don’t do, so you can grow and improve.
Check out my new book: ‘Leading Worship: Notes from a Grand Adventure‘. This is a great gift for the musician or worshipper in your life! Pick up the Kindle version for only $3.99 and the paper back for only $13.30.