I love being a praise and worship leader! I love the calling, I love seeing the congregation respond and I even love the preparation, practice and set up! Being a praise and worship leader is an integral part of my life, whether I’m active in leading, traveling to new audiences, recording or just sitting around strumming a guitar in my cell group. I would rather be involved in the worship of the church than in any other department, even though the work demands from being involved in this aspect of ministry can be higher than in many other areas of the church.
I know many of you love being a praise and worship leader too! While some of you may be frustrated or discouraged in your calling, I hope that this discussion of why I love what I do is an encouragement to you in your own situation.
The Calling of Being a Praise and Worship Leader
I love the fact that I’m called to be a worship leader! God has not only laid this ministry on my heart and given me talents to use, but He has also challenged and developed it over time. In fact, while some people in the various audiences around the world where I ministry would see my ministry as the finished product, I can assure you that my worship leading is part of the long, sometimes painful and still currently continuing education process! You never actually arrive as a praise and worship leader, you keep developing and learning through the years!
All of us faced disappointments, discouragements and difficult times in our lives and in our ministries. One of the greatest sources of encouragement in these tough times is the sure and steadfast knowledge that you have been called to this ministry. If being a praise and worship leader is part of God’s calling on your life, then don’t give up and don’t turn aside from the way that he is ordained for you, no matter what the discouragements or external pressure may bring. You are called, regardless of the circumstances, and that is enough!
The Challenge of Being a Praise and Worship Leader
Another thing I love about being a praise and worship leader is the challenge that it makes on my life, my walk with the Lord and on my musical and singing abilities!
In any ministry there’ll always be challenges and it is our triumphs over these challenges that build character into our lives. Worship leading is not so much about self-esteem and self-confidence as it is about self-discipline, because we need discipline to meet the challenges that we face, and to overcome them in the power of the Holy Spirit.
Some of the challenges we face are musical. We must learn to select the right songs and arranged them in innovative and attractive ways. We will be challenged in our singing and musical ability, so we must constantly be improving our talents, honing and sharpening them regularly.
Some challenges we face are spiritual, so we must rise to the occasion and make sure that our life with the Lord is on track! It is not enough to look good on stage when our personal life with Jesus is a fraud! Who we present as onstage must be a reflection of who we are in the prayer closet, and this is a constant challenge to keep us humble and seeking the Lord at ALL times.
One of the unrecognized challenges of being a praise and worship leader is in leading our team and again we need the Lord’s wisdom as we lead. It is not enough to be a great singer or musician, we need to be great leaders of the men and women in our team. We need to inspire them, sometimes rebuke them and always be available to them to deal with any challenges that they face. We need to deal with conflicts between team members, and recognize that we are responsible for the spiritual walk of all the team members if we are to become great and effective worship leaders.
The Joy of Being a Praise and Worship Leader
Along with the challenges there are also many wonderful joys in being a praise and worship leader. When I overcome challenges this will bring me joy. When I see our team growing in the Lord as well as gelling together as a band, this too brings me joy. Even little things like hitting a great harmony or arranging a song in a new and exciting way bring me joy.
I believe that the ultimate joy of being a praise and worship leader is when we look out across the congregation and we see people worshiping the Lord with all their hearts. The joy of knowing that I’m able to lead people into a deeper and more meaningful experience of God is a joy like no other, and seeing this makes up for all the hours of practice, the dealing with challenges and conflicts and the time given up to spend in preparation for the church service.
This to me is payment in full! At the end of the church service, I want to know that I have been a good and faithful servant and there is no greater joy than that. Standing on stage in seeing people in the audience losing themselves in worship and adoration of the Lord fills my heart with joy, and if you have the same calling as me I know it will bring you joy as well.