Let Children Lead Worship!

When you let children lead worship, it gives adults hope. It’s easy to feel hopeless when every form of electronic communication delivers news of disasters and moral failures. The trap of hopelessness snatches people when they’re in the middle of a personal crisis. But when we witness children “getting it” and really leading with their hearts, it fills that empty tank with fresh hope. They realize that what we’re doing here does matter. We are making a difference. Our commitment to the Lord with our time, money, and dedication will change tomorrows because of these children. John Whitehead, in The Stealing of America, wrote, “Children are the living messages we send to a time we will never see.” Hopelessness makes us fear the message that children might take into the future, but witnessing children truly worshipping revives the hope that the living message we send to that time we will never see is a message full of God’s promise.

Children can also be an inspiration and motivator for adults. When adults witness children reciting passages of scripture by memory, they can’t run from that moment when they are challenged to rethink what they’ve personally done to engrave God’s Word on their own hearts. Families who know how much time and rehearsal have gone into being able to give God their best can’t help but reevaluate how they prepare for being part of worship. It breaks my heart when adults get up to share a solo, and they start off by saying, “I didn’t know what to sing, and this song came to me this morning in the shower.” What a terrible attitude for anyone to admit and an awful message to send to kids. Children, in contrast, take the part they play in worship seriously and will work for months in order to participate. That kind of commitment will raise the bar for adults as they contemplate their part in the service.

Another delightful benefit of including children in worship leadership is that it leads to numerical and spiritual growth. Grandparents who have not attended church in years have been known to start coming because their grandchildren were regularly part of the worship leadership. That led to those grandparents offering their hearts to the Lord and families being changed. Schoolteachers invited to see one of their students in a musical led to devoted and hungry disciples of Christ. Children have monstrous influence over what adults do and are anxious to share what they are doing in worship with the special people in their lives. The inhibitions of asking someone to join you at church that seem to be part of getting older aren’t yet present in kids. They are anxious to invite others to anything that is exciting to them, and leading worship is just that. When was the last time you really sensed that an adult was excited about leading worship? Oh, yes, a little child will lead them.