The Truth About Leading Worship

The Truth About Leading Worship

“Why don’t they get it?!”

“Don’t they love God?”

If you’ve been a worship leader for any amount of time, you’ll experience and/or ask questions like these eventually.

I know I have…MANY, MANY times throughout the last several years.

There have been times where I’ve walked away from a service and felt defeated.

I’ve felt like a failure.

Why?

Because the church, for whatever reason, just wasn’t into worshiping together in song that day.

It’s discouraging…it’s hard to grasp, especially if you’re a worship leader that’s passionate about this crazy, awesome and sometimes frustrating thing called corporate worship.

Well…I want to…need to…write this post.

Not just for other worship leaders, but for this worship leader.

One thing that has been consistent throughout my years leading worship is the inconsistency of focus and intensity in worship services and churches. It would be easy if we could just walk in every Sunday to an atmosphere and crowd like the ones that flock to Chris Tomlin and Hillsong United concerts. It would be fun and effortless, but that’s just not the reality of a church.

A church is like a family. Some days are better than others. Some days I come home from work and my wife, kids and the dog meet me at the door like I’m Ward Cleaver, so glad to see their Husband and Dad, as I walk into the sweet aroma of a delicious dinner.

Then there are days when I come home and the kids are driving my lovely wife to near insanity and the dog pukes on the carpet, because he got into some chocolate left out.

It’s not always ideal, but it’s real.

Church is the same way.

Some Sundays you’ll strike the first chord of the first song, and it will strike an ever-flowing chord through the crowd and spawn an intense, emotional overflow of worship.

Some Sundays you’ll strike the first chord of the first song, and you’ll look out and realize that the crowd has formed an organized strike against corporate worship that day.

It’s not always ideal, but it’s real.

As a worship leader that cares about people beyond the emotion and expression that they bring to corporate worship, I’ve learned that if I want people to eventually experience the love and grace of Jesus in their life, I need to, in turn, give them love and grace in their journey toward freedom in worship.

I want them to get it. I want them to embrace freedom and express their adoration, because I know the power in it.

So, how do we see that happen, when it feels hopeless?

I’m writing this post because God, once again, has been reminding me lately that if I want to truly lead worship, then I need to lead in worship.

I need to approach each Sunday with a heart so full of God that it will overflow in song, even if no one else is. I need to lead in worship if I want to truly lead worship.

1
2
Previous articleHow to Preach a Text You Don’t Fully Understand
Next articleBeth Moore: This Will ‘hamstring’ Your Ability to Parent
Gary Durbin
Gary is the Worship Arts Director at Redemption Chapel in Stow, Ohio. He is also a blogger and a songwriter with a passion to serve the church. He and his wife, Jennifer, have two children and have been married since 1999. You can follow him on Twitter & Instagram @garydurbin or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/garydurbin.