COVID changes are here, happening right now, and while many are waiting for them to be reduced or removed, the fact is that some of them will stay… forever!

Some COVID Changes are Likely to Stay Forever!

You may not want to hear this, but it is likely that some COVID changes are likely to remain, if not forever, for a very, very long time.  I have a feeling social distancing in various forms is probably here to stay.  Certainly, restrictions are going to be in place for a long time, whether we get a second wave or not.

The smart move for worship leaders is to ask the Lord to show you how you can change to accommodate the new situation. Jesus might never change, but the manner in which we present Him changes often, generation to generation.  And during the coronavirus time, many of us have discovered new ways to reach people we would not otherwise be able to reach.

As worship leaders, we need to be listening to the Lord and obedient to what He asks us to do, even if it is a break with tradition.  Church folk have loved tradition for centuries, and rightly so, but there are some things that are not really about the gospel or Jesus or serving or unity, they are just our preferences.

So with at least some of the COVID changes being here to stay, or stay for many months or even years, listen to this and make the right changes in your team that will help you in your ministry both in the short term, and long into the future, no matter what the rest of society does!

So listen to this and get ready for the changes God leads you to make and let’s not let the times overwhelm us and our churches…

When your team falls away, which is very common in this current COVID 19 climate, it is always hard to take.

This podcast is designed to encourage you in your ministry if you have had a situation where the team you know, and love, have started to become distant.

When your Team Falls Away, God has a Plan!

Sometimes you see members of your team drifting away from you, from the church and sometimes even from the Lord, and it hurts. It is likely not you, not your church and not your personality that has driven them away.  It is very often they themselves, a change of heart or of emphasis that has caused your worship team to become less desirable for them.

Don’t worry, all is not lost. we want to encourage you in this hour, and tell you that sometimes there are blessed subtractions. Other times, there are great ways of drawing them back into the fold. either way, God has a plan in all this mess, and losing valuable people from your team is not part of it.

So listen to this and be blessed.  Also, be encouraged that if god does shift someone out, even someone you think is a huge part of the ministry, then He has a plan, bigger and better than you can imagine.  So pray, listen to this week’s pod, and trust that the whole situation is in His hands.  Like the rest of the world, even when things seem crazy and weird, God is always on the throne and still in control!

66- Maximising Lockdown

Maximising lockdown is something we all need to do in this current pandemic.

OK, we all have it and we all have to deal with the isolation and restrictions, but today’s pod is about how you can maximise lockdown.  Not just endure it, but use this time to reset and make life changes, and worship leading changes, that will last forever.

As worship leaders, and as any pastor in the church will tell you, this current crisis has been challenging to say the least.

We have had to modify, and indeed continue to modify the way we do church.  It is difficult, and we have found ourselves staring down the barrel of a monitor, phone or tablet trying to be pastors.

Image by Dipesh Parmar from Pixabay

And worship leaders too have had a difficult time trying to maximise lockdown.  Our band is scattered across the region, and our congregation is sitting at home in their PJs having breakfast instead of being in the church building.  Many argue it opens up a whole new audience, and this may be true, but I would be lying if I said as a pastor I’m loving zoom and Facebook more than real life!

It is difficult, it is downright weird, and for worship leaders and their teams, it can be soul-sapping and very disappointing.

Maximising Lockdown Maximises the Situation

Look, I know that the current situation is not ideal.  But we as worship leaders and church leaders can choose to see the glass half empty or half full.  Listen to this podcast so you can not only maximise lockdown as a leader in the church, but also maximise it in your own personal life, and in your time with the Lord.

In this middle of the greatest pandemic of our lifetime, listen to this and let’s make the very best use of the time and isolation afforded by the COVID pandemic.

Many around the world are still locked down over the coronavirus pandemic, and wondering if there is any hope in the lockdown.

This is for you!

Did You Say Hope in the Lockdown?

Is there hope in the lockdown?  Of course, there is, but for many of us going through this unprecedented time, it’s hard to see the hope of things ever settling down.

Great news… God is still on the throne, and you are still his child!  So we wanted to produce a fun podcast that blesses you and gives real hope for the future.

Here in Australia, we are trying to navigate an even harder situation, that is trying to come out of the lockdown in a sensible and law-abiding way. If we struggled for hope in the lockdown, in many ways coming out of it is even harder, especially for churches!

And I have a feeling church, and therefore worship leading may never be the same.  The fact is our world, our homes, schools and businesses may never be the same again also.  And the church, which is such an involved and social place, will be one of the hardest to get back to some kind of normalcy.

So rather than getting all upset and frustrated with the ridiculous situations we all face around the world, let’s inject a little bit of hope in the lockdown and see the great and wonderful things that are all around us.  The Lord has blessing even in the darkest of times, and that is what this podcast celebrates and encourages you with!

Listen to this podcast and be blessed, and remember that through all of this, God has a plan, and you are still called and anointed!

Habakkuk 3:17-18

Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,
 yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful in God my Savior.

Lockdown has been a challenge for all of us, and as worship leaders, it is especially hard to try and lead worship to a congregation who are only on a screen, and whom you cannot see anyway.

Lockdown is a Challenge, but Not a Deal Breaker!

OK, very few of us are enjoying being locked down, and it is especially hard for churches.  The whole point of church is that we can come together to worship together, and all of us including me are missing the joy and experience of corporate worship.

As worship leaders, we definitely have to think outside of the box on this one!  As a pastor, Darin can tell you it is different, difficult and even soul-destroying preaching to a camera or an empty auditorium.  As a worship leader, it is probably even harder.  We naturally feed off the energy of others worshipping with us, and of course, this is not available when we are on YouTube or Facebook live.

So how can you lead worship effectively to an empty room?  How can you motivate your team when things look more like a rehearsal than a worship time.  You can be effective as a worship leader, and then carry the lessons long after the lockdown finishes, and we want to share our ideas to help you do this!

So this special pod deals with lockdown, and how you can lead worship to your people who are in lockdown and needing to connect with and worship the Lord in a new, different and fresh way.  Listen and learn, because all of us are listening and learning as we go.  Even the best worship leaders and the most experienced have never seen or tried to deal with what we are facing during this lockdown, so let’s learn and move forward together

We re all going through it, and none of us like it, but lockdown is a reality for the entire world, and yes, even worship leaders.

Your Worship Team in Lockdown Needs a Leader!

Church is super weird right now, with zero contact, isolation, church on Facebook, zoom meetings, and frankly we are all getting a little, well, “over it” by this stage.

And so is your worship team. But rather than see all the negatives and difficulties, we wanted to change it all around and begin to see opportunities, perhaps even opportunities to minister to others in a way you might never have been able to think about just a few months ago.

And people need love right now.  Your worship team in lockdown is no different, stuck in a house or apartment, bored, frustrated and going out of their mind!  The social price that the world will pay for this pandemic is yet to be fully measured, but it will be extreme for sure!

So we want you as a worship leader to become the leader God has destined you to be!  And there is no greater opportunity that the once in a lifetime, even the once in a Millenium opportunities we now face.  You might be aware that the Chinese symbol for the word “crisis: is a combination of two words, danger and opportunity.  While the rest of the world is seeing danger we as the people of God can see opportunities that are unique.  And we can see chances to step up and be a leader to our worship team in lockdown, meeting their needs and pastoring them in their isolation and frustration.

In this special pod, we look at ways you can encourage and bless your worship team during their, and your lockdown.  The Lord can open unique opportunities for you, so listen to this pod and put some of these into action…

We all love them, and if he’s not there we sense a gap at the bottom end of our mix, but sometimes a bass player can disrupt things, especially if they are too loud.

The Bass Player

Bass provides the lower end of your mix and is often the most overlooked part of the music team.  The Bass player rarely has solos and lacks the pizzaz and prominence of a lead guitarist.  he lacks the romance of a piano or a saxophone, but if he is not playing, or not playing well, you can lose the entire mix!

And I would have to say that the “big bottom end” is one of my favourite things (it could be argued that my bottom end is bigger as a result of the lockdown, and the amount I have eaten!), but I love a great bass.  I generally equalise the bass lower, and take some of the bottoms out of the kick drum, and this gives it a rumbly, deep sound.

However, the risk with a bass player, because bass notes are of a longer wavelength, is that overwhelm many of the other sounds in the mix.  So controlling your bass player is going to essential if you want a pleasant mix, and if you want to avoid a hundred complaints about how loud the entire thing is!

So this week we are going to examine some sensible, subtle and excellent measures you can take to not only control your bass guitarist but to unleash their full potential.

Listen and learn how to encourage and get the very best from your bassist, who should be an integral part of your team and your worship sound…

Isolation… most of the known world is going through it right now, thanks to some virus that is afflicting mankind, so we thought we would do something crazy like discuss what you can do during the COVID 19 crisis.

So what can you do when you are in isolation due to COVID 19?

We thought we would have a bit of fun and look at things you can do while in isolation.  Obviously sitting watching Netflix and eating chocolate is not the best use of your time while isolated, right?  That would never lead to a flattening of the curve you know!

So we are turning the tables on lockdown, and giving you the top 5 things to do while in isolation, as long as you socially distance yourself of course.  And we do it all in just 12 action-packed, socially distanced minutes.

So use the time you have for things that in the long run really matter, and don’t waste all of your time watching the reruns of TV shows you don’t even really care about. The Kardashians can survive without you, and you are better off investing in things that have long-lasting value, both in our world and in eternity to come!

Here Downunder, for example, I have done a variety of things in lockdown, from planting a veggie patch to recording a new album, featuring a song about the coronavirus and the climate of fear it has produced among those who are lacking hope across the world.

I can’t solve all your problems, but we thought a bit of fun and a few useful suggestions would be in order for those still in isolation. Tune in, get some fun ideas, and have a few laughs along the way…

An electric guitarist is a double edged sword for most worship leaders and worship teams.

But we Love a Great Electric Guitarist, Right?

Yes, we do, we all love a guy who can play an electric guitar like Santana! But most of us know that that can play out one of two ways.

First, you might find an electric guitarist who loves Jesus, loves to serve and sees him or herself as a servant, serving Jesus with genuine humility and self sacrificing obedience.

Or, secondly, you might get an electric guitarist who might love God, but they want to be the star of every show, playing loud and dominant over everyone else and who wants to make worship their domain.

Now you might think this is a bit harsh on your average lead guitarist,but having ministered in worship for more than 30 years, I must say it is a label that is often lived up to.

Yet over the years, I have shared the stage with some absolutely awesome and very humble guitarists!  The thing is, your guitars can be a huge asset, of a massive liability, and you have the ability to she them into one of the other.

Listen to this podcast and learn how to make your electric guitarist one of the greatest assets of your worship team. Or you can just let them play lead solos all over your worship, or just keep telling them to turn down 500 times a day.  It’s your choice, so we would recommend that you listen to this podcast with an open heart.

We are here for you, in this terrible time of world wide crisis, and we will have a special edition of the worship podcast coming up for you. Stay tuned, and stay safe whether isolated in your home or out and about…

Controlling your keyboard player might seem like an easy thing, but it’s often harder than you might expect.

Generally, its not a question of volume when it comes to keyboard players, unlike drummers for example, because they have a volume knob and can be turned down.

When we talk about keyboards, we are referring to the players who play both piano and traditional keys.  These days, of course, you can turn the keys down in the mix, so volume isn’t the issue.  The main challenge with a keyboard player is what they play. If they are primarily piano, then you need one thing from them, but if they are keys, then you need them to play in a specific way.

Your Keyboard Player Can Add Unbelievable Atmosphere!

The prize is that, if you can control your keyboard player, you can create a wonderful, anointed and amazingly awesome atmosphere.

And this atmosphere can add a tremendous anointing to almost every aspect of worship, from the praise section to the worship, from before the worship opens and right through to the response time.

In all aspects of worship, a well-played and sensitively applied keyboard can add a whole host of blessing to your congregation.

So settle back, especially if you are in lockdown (like I am right now), because COVID 19 can’t stop you getting the best from your keyboard player and indeed your entire worship team.  You will not be locked away forever you know, because soon this virus will be passed and your role as a worship leader will be to lead the people and inspire your church members to come back to the church.

So take the time and learn how to cope with, and get the very best from your keyboardists.  You’ll be glad that you took the 12 minutes to learn these principles…