The Worship See-Saw

Just had some thoughts about a see-saw.  Thought I’d share.

It is always a difficult job ensuring the right people are on your worship team.  You always seem to have that awesome guitarist who just wears band t-shirts with skulls on them, and listens to bands like Death March and I Hate My Mum.  Then there’s the middle aged lady who sings – nobody remember her joining the team – she was just always there.  The bassist…well, just smile would you. Etc. Etc.  Who’s right for your team?

How did these people get on the worship team?  What criteria do we use to bring them on?  Did we get it right?

I heard someone say recently, that the responsibility in leadership is knowing when to bring the right person, into the right place, at the right time.  It essential we bring the right people into any ministry – bringing the wrong people just leads to a period of pain and hurt when you have to deal with your wrong decisions.

So here comes my see-saw.

A simple, basic rule (not perfect, but a good starting point)…is a balance between ‘skill’ and ‘character’.  Lets define those first.

By skill I mean, simply your technical ability to play your instrument or sing.  A dedication to your instrument – a desire to pursue excellence, to practice, to be prepared at practices and worship times.  Caring about your tuning, your intonation, your place in the music, about when to play and when to not play.

By character I mean a heart for God.  A genuine desire to serve in your worship.  Dedication to the Word and to prayer.  Servant hearted enough to arrive early to set up, to help carry others gear and to help tidy the stage.  In ‘peformance’, your only concern is pleasing God, not man.  Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit in your playing.  Evidence of a life lived out for God.

Now placing Skill and Character on our see-saw, have a think about what happens if there is an imbalance in either direction.

If you have all Skill and no Character, the person is there to please man, not God.  Worship times become only a performance.  The leading of the Holy Spirit will be meaningless to that person.  The focus of the congregation gets moved to person on the stage (possibly doing some awesome solo), rather than Jesus.

If you have all Character and no Skill, then you are a distraction.  Again, congregational focus is fixed on the bad performance on stage rather than Jesus.  For all the love, grace and compassion show towards this person in keeping them involved, and for all the heart to please God,  they are the wrong person, in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I’m guessing when a kind of equilibrium is found between skill and character, that person starts to become invisible on stage – a servant hearted musician, playing skillfully for the Lord, who does not want the limelight, but just wants to point the way to Jesus.  Look for these people – they are sometimes a rare breed!

So often the equilibrium may not be found in a person – there may be an imbalance in one direction or the other.  This does not rule them out of the worship team, because we are people of grace!  This is where leadership must work at digging up the gold hidden in a person, and addressing the imbalance, but by the same token, we must also use wisdom in recognising those that need to go and play on the swings!

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