What Matters Most?
Every week, we stand before God’s people, striving to lead with excellence. But in the weekly grind of ministry, do you ever stop and think about what matters most? Like, when you stand before the judgment seat of Christ, what will be most valuable to you?
Will He care about how awesome your guitar tone sounded? Or how precisely your worship band executed its transitions between songs? Will the production value of the worship services you led put you in good standing with the King of the universe? I tend to doubt it. Rather I believe the most important question will be, did the Gospel completely change your heart?
In other words, more than any skill, talent or achievement, God is after your character.
How to Thrive in Ministry
Character is the quality of the heart revealed in the patterns of life. In other words, what you do demonstrates who you are. That’s the essence of character.
And yet, if I were to guess, many worship leaders spend far more time sharpening their skills than they do forming their character. Time and energy are poured into stage performance, while character development too often receives little, if any, attention. Perhaps this is because most of us enter the world of musical worship ministry by virtue of our skill. And so we bank our ministry on how well we can perform. However very few worship leaders ever truly thrive because of great character. Many have even made a train wreck of their lives and their churches through moral failure.
The hard truth is that talent will only get you so far. At some point, your natural abilities won’t sustain the mounting pressures of leadership. And without the ever-deepening formation of godly character, a leader’s greatest strengths actually become his greatest weaknesses. Therefore we must be character-first worship leaders. Only then will we begin to exercise the full potential of our talents and abilities. Only then will we thrive.
The most effective worship leaders are the ones who lead from a heart that has been changed by knowing God and making Him known through the varied seasons and experiences of life. Character-first worship leaders understand that the glory of Jesus is more than enough to motivate and mobilize us today so we can finish well in the end, saying, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness” (2 Ti. 4:7-8).
Dear worship leader, bank everything on your pursuit of Christ-like character and you’ll get way more than recognition, perceived success or job security. You’ll get a crown.
This article originally appeared here.