With the ever-increasing emphasis in mainstream churches on “worship” (put in quotations because here I am using that word specifically to refer to the music portion of a church service, especially in churches that have a “worship time” in their services somewhat delineated from the preaching of a sermon), advice abounds on how to improve that aspect of the service. As a sometimes worship leader, it is certainly a goal that those in the congregation would be engaged in and get some benefit from the music I’m leading and this portion of the service. Many worship leaders (myself included) get frustrated from time to time with the feeling that people aren’t as engaged as we feel they should be and might even feel discouraged thinking it is their fault that every single person isn’t singing and raising their hands in all-out worship. So we look for answers on how we can improve, thinking that if we as worship leaders just do the right things, we can lead a congregation that worships in this way.
Today I’m going to share with you the surefire way to improve the church’s worship. On one level it has everything to do with the worship leader and on the other it has nothing at all to do with the worship leader. But this is not my original idea, it comes from a book I recently finished (and recommend to all worship leaders or worship team members) called “The Worshipping Artist,” by Rory Noland. The most important thing a worship leader must do to enhance their ability to lead others in worship is to become a vibrant PRIVATE worshiper. If we aren’t worshiping God during the week, how can we expect to genuinely participate in it on Sunday morning?
Here’s a quote from the book:
“Personal worshipers tend to take the corporate worship experience home with them and bring their private worship experience to church with them, thus enhancing the worship service. If a church wanted to take the next step in improving its worship, I wouldn’t rush to change the program or find a new worship leader. I would encourage every member to become a personal worshiper. Can you imagine a church comprised largely of people who worshiped privately during the week and then came together on Sunday to worship? Their hearts would be so primed for worship, it wouldn’t matter whether the music was traditional, contemporary, or blended.”
So there you have it – the surefire way to improve the church’s worship is to encourage each member to become a personal/private worshiper or encourage them to grow in that area of their life. Next week, I’ll look at what that looks like and how we can grow as personal worshipers. I would love to be a part of a church where every member has a vibrant private worship with God all through the week.