I decided my 18 year-old son’s latest post was important enough to steal it from him. I only wish I had written this first. Great thoughts. Nate has led in our student worship area for the last couple years and done an amazing job. Our church is going to miss him this fall as he begins his college days at Moody Bible College in Chicago. You can follow Nate’s thoughts at his blog Moons from Burma.
Here is Nate’s post on Creating Systems for Worship Teams:
For any organization to maximize its potential, GREAT systems have to be in place. You can have poor systems and still reach your potential, but your potential will just not be very potent.
One of the most important areas of church world is the worship team. If a church wants to maximize the potential of their worship environment, then it obviously makes sense that a GREAT system would have to be in place. The problem is this: the system builder types are typically not on the worship team. Usually the worship team consists of extremely abstract/creative people and people that simply want to help setup and tear down stuff. Both are vital to the team, but neither is especially gifted at building systems.
The temptation is to just let the worship environment take care of itself, because after all, creative ideas are probably flourishing already. However, creative ideas are not a system. If your goal is to maximize potential, you need a great system; which means you need a system builder. You need someone who can sit down and figure out how to get every part of the worship team on the same page; someone who can build a framework in which the creative ideas can be executed. Every second of the worship time needs to have been thought through with an ultimate purpose in mind.
The reality is that most worship leader positions are filled based on musicianship and vocal ability, not on LEADING ability. There are multiple types of leading that must be done in order to truly LEAD worship, and I would argue that the majority of it takes place behind the scenes on Monday and Tuesday, not on stage Sunday. So, if you are going to really take your church somewhere in terms of worship, you need a system in place. What that ultimately means is that you need a leader in your worship area… in addition to an artist.
Systems can be hard to build for a group of abstract/unstructured people, but ultimately there needs to be a great one to maximize your potential. You need structure to succeed, which also means you need a structured person on the team.
How does your church systematize its worship environment?