3 Things Worship Leaders Can Learn From Teaching Pastors
Recently I had the incredible privilege of teaching for our church family here at Calvary Monterey. I’ve taught for Wednesday night and Sunday night services in the past but this was my first time filling the pulpit all day long. All four services.
I spent about 5 years in student ministry before moving to California. During that time I taught from the Bible every week while also growing as a worship leader. While preparing for this teaching and delivering the message I was reminded of how pastoral the role of a worship leader is and what we can learn from our teaching Pastors.
Know God’s Word
I’m so thankful for the years of exposure to God’s word I’ve had. My parents, college classes, books, pastors and of course personal Bible reading and Bible study have all contributed to my knowledge and understanding of Scripture and theology. I have much more to learn but when preparing to teach a text having an understanding of God’s revelation is crucial.
It’s the same for worship leaders. We may not have the depth of Biblical knowledge a teaching pastor has. We haven’t spent hours every week in the study of Scripture year after year, but even still we must have a solid understanding of the God we worship.
Scripture should inform the songs we sing, the prayers we pray, and the words we speak from the platform. Make sure you are in God’s word continually!
Know God’s People
My teaching Pastor once filled me in on a little tactic of his. Before he started prepping his sermon for the week he would write down ten names. Names of people in our Church. Young and old, men and woman, believers and unbelievers. He would reference this list throughout his teaching prep and consider them when forming his thoughts.
Having a good understanding of who is actually in those seats makes a huge difference in your leadership. Some good questions to ask are:
How many of these people are new to this church?
How many of these people are new to the faith?
What different age groups are represented?
What are some trials people are going through?
What are some things people are celebrating?
Knowing the make up, culture, and spiritual maturity of your congregation should inform how you lead worship.
On the week I taught our church I went out to the lobby before everyone was dismissed because I wanted to talk to people. I wanted to meet them. I wanted to pray for them. I wanted to hear how the word of God was changing their hearts and minds. This is something our lead pastor often does and I believe it make a big difference in his ability to speak into the life's of individuals in our church.
As worship leaders it is so important to continually be connecting with individuals in our churches. Have one on one conversations. Come out from the green room and meet newcomers. Pray for people. Even be willing to receive their critical comments.
Last Sunday before two of our services I spoke with a young father who’s daughter was recovering from a very serious hip surgery. Before another service I prayed for an elderly woman who was waiting to be healed from Parkinson's disease. Conversations like these absolutely inform how I lead.
So whether you’re an ordained minister, a part time church employee, or a volunteer, all worship leaders serve to shepherd their church.
How do you work towards knowing God’s Word, knowing His people, and building relationships? Has it made a difference in your leading?
Share in the comments below!