This worship leader podcast introduces a new concept in training…

Tag Team Worship Leading!  If you want to start training your worship team and have a real and a long lasting impact, then this podcast is definitely not to be missed.  It is like tag team wrestling, without the hard knock, theatrics or sweat, and can allow you to train and and develop your team to leave a lasting legacy in your worship leading.  So check it out now and make a long-lasting impact on your church…

 

Click on the button below to download and listen

 

  And Don’t Forget to Check Out Our Ever-Growing Worship Leader Podcast Collection (Getting bigger each week!) If you are looking for ideas, inspiration or anything else about worship leading, you will find great teaching and really sad jokes (but we love it anyway!) right here on the podcasts

Don’t Forget the Free Books with Worship Leader Podcast Tips

worship leading podcast worship leader podcastAlso remember that we offer free e-books at our website. So if you are starting out and eager to learn some practical worship leader tips, between the worship leader pod and the free books you are sure to pick up information that will make you a better worship leader, starting next Sunday.  And yes, we have great teaching for everyone from worship directors, worship leaders to musicians, singers and even sound guys!!!! If you haven’t got your free books yet, click the link below. And feel free to leave comments or e-mail us because we want to enjoy the journey together with you. I’m sure that many of you have worship leading tips that you can share with others as well, so leaving comments on the blog will be there for everyone to read and be blessed.

Click Here for your Free Worship Leader Podcast Tips Ebooks

To start the Worship Leader Podcast, click on the link at the bottom of this page and let me know what you think! So God bless and I look forward to sharing all these podcasts and worship leader tips with you in the coming weeks and months as well.

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I recently received an outline of standards for leading praise and worship , and I have asked Jane Sheneman, a worship leader who is going through a torrid time at the moment in her worship team.  It seems that Jane believes in standards of excellence, but many of her team do not want to “commit” to these ideals.

 

Leading Praise and Worship Takes Commitment

 

Leading Praise and WorshipThe fact is , leading praise and worship takes commitment.  It takes time, it takes passion and Jane, like many worship leaders, gets very frustrated by the lack of commitment shown by her team members.  So she decided to document what she believes is required to be a part of the worship team.

 

Leading Praise and Worship is Leading People

 

When we are leading praise and worship we are leading a group of talented and sometimes brittle people.  I have read this document and I think it is worth publishing on the blog so that you can comment on it, and also incorporate it into your team.  It sets out the standards that we really require from our team, and it is a perfect way to introduce new team members so that they know what is required of them.

 

Leading Praise and Worship Requires Standards of Excellence

 

Not perfection, excellence, and particularly in the area of our attitudes and commitment to the Lord and each other.  Little things like not turning up on time or criticizing team members can blow up in your face if you neglect them, so please read these ideas and see what you think.

 

And now, here is Janes offering…

Praise Team guidelines & responsibilities :

Goal: To bring “GOD” glory, and people closer to Him through our worship service.

 

Responsibilities:

 1. A good testimony to the body (the church family). Cheerful . . . considerate . . .caring (not proud or boastful).

2. Praise Team members are the most visible leadership of the Worship Ministry.

3. A cooperative spirit within Praise Team.  Attitude is more important than ability.

    There is no “I” in Team, but there is “US” in Jesus

4. Give of time to prepare and rehearse music outside rehearsals. You will be expected to listen to & learn the music on the CD provided.

5.Lead in worship. don’t hesitate , that only brings confusion. You as leaders need to initiate singing, clapping and the lifting of hands( if appropriate)

6. Team members need to make worship and practice a priority in their lives.

 

 Dress:

o LADIES: Slacks/Skirts/Dresses – Well below the knee!

o MEN: No shorts, t-shirts, or flip-flops.

 

Praise Teams rehearsal :

 Thursday 6:00-8 in the sanctuary:

* Attendance and punctuality are very important factors for being a member of the music team(s).

Rehearsals are only 2 hours per week, & 1/2 hour Sunday before Sunday School, That is SO little for such important work.

 

Two things are required for every rehearsal:

 1.Great Attitude!

2.ON TIME Arrival!

*Make a habit that on time is 5-10 minutes early! In case you must be absent . . . you need to call or text “Jane Sheneman” as soon as you know you can not be there. If I am unavailable “leave a message on cell(1XXXXXX) or home(XXXXXXX) phone” I will get back to you as soon as possible.

* Rehearsals are required, and members should arrive ready to work on the designated material. Poor attendance and punctuality reflect a lack of discipline and respect for the Lord’s ministry.

*a continued inability to be @ practice or arrive ontime means you will not be prepared & unable to lead with team in Sundays a.m. service.

 *Ministery often involves a sacrifice – this often expresses itself in a time commitment.

 

 

 

A Lifestyle that is continually growing to conform to the image of Christ.

* Participants must be born-again believers of Christ, and their lifestyle must resemble that of a born-again Christian.

   If there are problems along the moral line I will talk to the individual in question.

   If there is no improvement that person may need to talk with the pastor.

*Because the Praise Team is a position of leadership an unwilling desire to adhere to church policy may result in being asked to step down.

 each case will be handled tactfully and confidentially with the aim of restoring your faith and ministry potential, keeping your confidence in the leadership of this

 ministry and the congregation.

 

Teachable:

This means No one has ever “arrived” – be open to one another and new ways of looking at things and correction.

receive constructive criticism and be open to the comments  and ideas of others.

Humility is a virtue and James 4:6 says: But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

also Luke 14:11 says: For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

hum·ble

 1.not proud or arrogant; modest: to be humble although successful.

 

*any differences need to be dealt with in Love and seek to foster peace ( James 3:17)

always build each other up with positive comments and affirmities.

We need to strive as a “Team” to sacrifice our own wants and desires to see the greater good for the group and the church.

realizing we are interdependant of each other and valueing what each of us brings to this ministry, welcoming and giving everyone a sense of belonging, and being considerate of each other.

Philippians 2:1 -4

Imitating Christ’s Humility

 1 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

 

 

 

 

 

Commited to Excellence:

 We should never ” wing it” or “fly by the seat of our pants”! in any ministry and this should be reflected in our worship with careful planning, practicing and execution.

 

This does not mean “professionalism” and we are not here to entertain people but we need to do our best and bring God the glory through our ministry.

 

We should never be content with where we are at but always seek to become better at what we do and serve GOD with excellence.

 

Prepare your heart to Worship

Sunday morning we are often so rushed and harried that we are not in an attitude of worship. We need to take time as a team before we warm up to quiet our hearts, pray and ask the Lord to be in and with us throughout the service. Leading people in worship is a privilege and responsibility,you will be leading people toward the throne of God. Unity and a love for one another will effect our ability to do this.

 

 

 

*Please note:

These guidelines are meant to help us as a Team to grow towards Christ and each other, also to help us in our decisions and priorities.

All who are interested in being a part of the Praise Team(s) will be required to sign a statement form which would be a mutual agreement between both parties.

 

So what do you think?  If you are leading praise and worship regularly in your church you may find this information very helpful!

If you are thinking about worship training then chances are that you are serious about leading praise and worship.  I believe that leading worship is one of the greatest privileges we can have as musicians and singers, and for that reason worship training is essential to make us the very best we can be at our chosen spiritual vocation!

Why Get Worship Training?

This is an obvious question with an equally obvious answer… to become the best we can be!  Some people have told me that they see no need for worship training because the Holy Spirit will lead them into all truth, but I think that this is not only lazy but it is also a slap in the face for the many thousands who have paid good money and set time aside for worship training , to study and improve their worship leading.

Why do Pastors train and why do they go to college?   To hone their skills and become the best they can be!  Why do counselors study?  To improve their skills and abilities.  So why should worship leaders seek and undergo proper worship training?  For exactly the same reason!  Just because you have a natural ability of gift does not mean that you don’t need to strive to improve it!

Worship Training Helps You Train Others

worship trainingIf you set out to obtain worship training, then this is not just for yourself and your church, but it is also for your worship team.  As you learn tips, techniques and new ideas, you have the ability to pass these on to those around you and also improve their abilities.  So once you are trained, you have the opportunity to train others and thereby improve your entire worship team.  This is a great reason to consider worship training even if you are experienced yourself.  Not only can you improve yourself but you can also influence others for good as well.

Find the Right Worship Training For You

The most important thing when considering worship training is finding the right type of training for you and your team, and your specific situation.  It is not enough to just attend a worship conference or two and say, “I’m trained now!”  No, worship training is an ongoing thing which enables you to continue to hone and refine your abilities, no matter what stage you are at!

So if you are considering improving your worship leading abilities, you need to find the best worship training for your situation.  If you are unable to attend a conference or course, then why not check out internet based learning.  This will enable you to use and apply and sift through the information you receive so you can process it and apply in the best way for your situation and church.

For long term results that can be applied immediately yet will last years, internet based courses are probably the most effective worship training you can get!

As a worship leader it is important that you consider the question of whether an unbeliever can be part of your worship program.  I am often asked this question when two situations occur in a church: there are few team members available for the worship program, and the person who is not a Christian is a really talented individual.  If you have a large church with many talented musicians then the question may not affect you as much, but if your team is small and a very talented musician or singer is in the wings, can you willingly accept them into your worship program with a clear conscience?

What is the Worship Program Really About?

When considering your team, you need to stop for a moment and ask yourself what the worship program is all about.  Is it about having a great sound, or being professional or rocking the congregation’s socks off?  Or is it about leading your church family into a deeper, more meaningful relationship with the Lord?

I would suggest to you that the worship program must be about leading people to God in worship.  Sure, we want to be professional and to play and sing to a high and beautiful standard, but I would suggest that these are secondary considerations for your worship program.  A worship program is a spiritual event, not a concert, so the idea that a non-believer can join your team is surely out of phase with the aims of your worship program team.

Who Qualifies Someone to Take Part in the Worship Program?

worship programIn teams that I have lead, one of the core requirements of team members is that they know Jesus and have a relationship with Him.  Non-believers can undoubtedly play well, sing well, and probably perform well, but they have no concept of the very central idea of the worship program: closer communion with the Lord.  Yes, we want it played and sung brilliantly, but we do not want to compromise the spirit of our worship program just to sound a bit better.

One of the first major worship program teams I assembled featured a very good drummer who was not a Christian, but who proved to be a demanding and rather aggressive team member.  We had a backup drummer who was relegated to percussion, and who was just happy to be a part of the worship program at all.  When the unbelieving drummer didn’t bother to turn up to practice twice over because he said he was good enough, I appointed the Christian guy.  He could not play as well, but he had a great spirit and understood what humility and serving in the  worship programwas all about.

Can the Worship Program Be a Tool To Reach Team Members?

In most modern churches, the pressure is on worship leaders to sound great and act professional (and this means accepting talented people whose lives are not right with the Lord) and I believe that worship leaders need to make a stand in their worship program.  I have heard of non-believers becoming Christians because of their involvement in the worship band, but I do not feel that this is the way we should be operating.  Why not lead them to the Lord first (when there is no ego opportunity at stake), then introduce them to the whole concept of worship, both personal and corporate.

Using worship team involvement to win a talented unbeliever to Christ is a bit like marrying an unbeliever to witness to them and lead them to Christ.  It is around the wrong way!  It is difficult to capture a true spirit of worship when the team for your worship program is unequally yoked!

So, worship leaders and pastors, let us make a stand for what is right and make sure our worship team is focused on the real task of leading people to Christ.  We must worship in Spirit and in truth, not just have professional music and presentation. Don’t allow your worship program to be held to ransom by talented non-believers.

how to lead worshipIf you are looking for ways to learn how to lead worship in three easy steps then this could be one of the most important articles you’ve ever read.  Leading worship in church is a responsible and respected position, but many times people who are inexperienced are thrown into the job, even though they do not know how to lead worship effectively.  So here are a few points on how to lead worship powerfully and effectively, especially if you are inexperienced.

How To Lead Worship Step 1: Prepare Your Material

The first step in learning how to lead is to prepare your material thoughtfully, carefully and most importantly prayerfully.  I cannot emphasize this point enough: if you want to learn how to lead worship in a powerful way that is well received by your audience, you must select your material carefully.

The best praise and worship songs to use, especially when you are learning how to lead praise and worship, are ones that people are familiar with.  This will of course very from church to church, but there are a number of great “standards” that people know and love and will immediately respond to.  Great praise and worship hymns such as “I Surrender All”, “How Great Thou Art” and “Great Is Thy Faithfulness” are often sure fire ways two great worship times, as are more modern songs such as “Shout to the Lord” or “How Great Is Our God.”

The thing to remember when you were learning is that praise and worship leading is more about your audience than it is about your preferences.  One of the biggest mistakes those learning how to lead make is they choose songs they liked that the congregation is unfamiliar with.  If you want to make a great impression lead worship with anointing and great favor, select songs that everybody knows!

Step 2: Prepare Your Worship Team

If you are starting out, you need to prepare your worship team so that they are 100% with you and supportive of what you were doing.  You need to spend time with them not only practicing and playing, but also enjoying coffee and laughs as you build a relationship that will be transferred into your praise and worship leading.

Make sure you spend time preparing your team in prayer, and also explaining to them why you were doing certain songs in the order you have chosen.  As you arrange the songs, try to include their ideas because there is great power in unity, and if you are learning you must also be learning how to lead men and women.

Step 3: Prepare Your Heart

The third area of learning how to lead worship is to prepare your own heart.  You need to spend time with the Lord if you are going to lead others into his presence, and that includes prayer and devotions, reading the word of God and seeking him as to which songs he wants to use in the worship time.

Of all the areas of preparation, if you are learning how to lead worship the most important is to prepare your own heart.  If you have seen in your life, confess it and get it out of the way.  If you have distractions in your life, deal with them and make sure they do not interfere with your mind or your heart as you come to lead worship.

I believe that if you take these three simple steps to heart, you will learn how to lead praise and worship in a powerful and effective way for your congregation.  Remember, you are not just learning how to do it but you are learning how to lead your team, prepare your hearts and direct your audience into a greater worship experience.

So when you have the opportunity, don’t just stand up and sing a series of songs but learn how to lead worship in a powerful, anointed and effective way.

Worship Team Training is a far more complex role than most worship leaders realize! They start off thinking that all they have to do is sing and the rest will follow, but over the years I have learned many things about worship team training and handling my musicians and singers. In creating and working with different worship teams I have also made hundreds of mistakes, most if which I do not want you to make when you are worship team training. I would like to share with you a couple of things I’ve been taught, in the hope that you’ll be able to duck these little bumps along your own journey.

Worship Team Training is More Than a Passion

worship team trainingWorship leading needs to be a passion for the worship leader, but for most of your band and singers and that is why worship team training is so essential.  However, you may be dispirited to find that they are not as passionate as you when it comes to your worship leading!

We must not forget the members of the worship groups are volunteers. I know there are some churches that have paid musicians and singers but ninety percent of us have volunteers. In that we must remember that while we must have a group of basic rules of our teams, we mustn’t be harsh in our worship leading policies.

Worship Team Training is More Than Rules

Here is what I mean by that. If your rules are too strict and or they are too controlling you will have trouble keeping volunteers, no matter how good your worship team training or how big the church. This is a mistake that I made early on and soon found out very quickly that a volunteers heart is to serve not be proscribed by a handful of rules. As I recall scripture has something to say about rules that are too stern. Are we going to act like Pharisees, or are we going to stand up and act like true worship leaders!

The best leaders lead by motivation, not by orders and rules. If you want the very best from your worship team training, become a worship leader of the highest order, and inspire the adulation and devotion of those you lead in your Worship Leading ministry.

Worship Team Training and Team Requirements

Another point to consider is that we have got to be open to changing to the requirements of the team. Remember this is a worship leading ministry. For instance, say your drummer just got a new job. And part of that job needs him to take some night classes. He still wants to be on the team but his classes happen to be on the booked walk through nights. He knows that he must rehearse as part of your worship team training to be on the team. What do you do?

Simply ask the remainder of the team if there is another night or time that they could meet. Almost all of the time you will be able to work something out for your worship team training. I have done this for many different situations. Whether it be childcare or job related or what ever. The point is this is a Worship Leading ministry. Adapt to the requirements of the people as long as it will not hinder or affect the worship team training or dynamics in a negative way.

Another common mistake many worship leaders is making worship team training too structured. Yes you want the band to be musically tight. And you have new songs you want to work on. But make sure you have fun too. Often the team just wants to fellowship awhile before worship team training or before you rehearse. Often you might want to jam together on a good chord progression for fun. As an important point I can see these jam sessions making the musicians tighter.

Again, helping your team enjoy worship team training and rehearsal is a key to having great dynamics within your team. We must never forget that. People must come before music. Don’t only get together for worship team training, rehearsals and the service. Do not simply rehearse and serve together, you need to play together also. Have parties. Go on barbecues. Have a games night or go out together. Simply put, have fun together away from the band setting and away from worship team training. Fellowship together. This is a superb way to get to know one another and to build friendships and trust.

Remember, all work and no play will make the singers and musicians stay away.  There is more to worship leading than worship team training, rehearsals and the service!

I am often asked advice on how to lead praise and worship with an inexperienced team.   If you want to learn how, you will have to face this one some day: the situation whereby you have to carry a member of your band or singers, for whatever reason, even though you know this will seriously affect your worship leading and the spirit of worship in the church that service.

how to lead praise and worshipThere are many facets to this problem, but the central fact is this: you can still be a great worship leader even if your band is imperfect, or even incompetent!

How to Lead Praise and Worship But Carry Some of Your Band!

If your church is anything like mine, you are not worship leading with seasoned professionals, you are dealing with amateurs, which means that you have to be a servant and coax them along with a spirit of love and tolerance. In my book on how to lead praise and worship, I teach that there is never a reason to speak down to these people, or to embarrass them. Your job as a praise worship leader is to encourage them, even if they are poor, even if they mess up the wonderful worship leading time you had planned. I believe that the Lord will honor you for this!

Most often these individuals are trying hard, and will be crushed if you convey that you are upset with them, so please be careful even with the way you look at other band members. Remember, if you have lots of talent but no love, you are only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal (1 Corinthians 13).  Just as you are always learning how to lead worship, so they can have a learning curve for their role too!

How to Lead Yet Carry These Guys?

There are ways and means of carrying an underachiever, but it is certainly easier in some parts of the band than others.

Singers are easy: Turn them off in the front of house with a quiet word to the sound man, but keep them in the foldback so they think they are singing. if they are actually off, turn them down a bit in the foldback.

Guitars: Similar to the above.

Bass: Much harder to hide, so I would suggest rather that you rewrite the music in a much simpler for, using basic notes with a minimum of changes per bar.

Drummers: This is the hardest. I have this situation now, and these are tough. I must say, inexperienced drummer have a habit of either slowing down in faster songs, or completely mixing up the kick and snare, so the snare is on beat one, and the kick beat two. in my church, you will often see me off mike calling out to the drummer, “the other one”, which means they have to change the kick and snare back!

The bottom line is, when you learn how to lead praise and worship and continue to serve and love with the right attitude, you will be able to bear with your less competent band members. I would chose simpler songs, even if you don’t want to. When I have one of these guys on, I will often change the songs I am doing to find something within their abilities.

Learning How to Bring the Best Out of Your Team

Finally, recognize that learning how to lead is about learning how to bring the best out of your team.  Pray and believe the Lord for an awesome worship time, even if it is not up to your standards! After all, when you are worship leading God is listening to your heart, not necessarily the quality of your music!

If you manage your team correctly, both the good and the bad members, the competent and the incompetent, then you will truly be learning not only how to lead praise and worship, but also how to lead men and women in godliness.