Is your team on a pursuit? Is that how you would describe the culture of your team?
The Apostle Paul was all about it:
Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:12-14).
Forgetting what lies behind.
The upward call of God.
Let’s explore two aspects of what makes for a healthy worship culture.
#1: The Pursuit of God
What does it mean to pursue something? You don’t rest until it’s found. You can’t think of anything else. You are obsessed, overcome, lovesick.
This is the legacy of pursuit the Apostle Paul left us with.
Is this what marks your life? Is this what marks your team?
Without a never-ending pursuit of God, momentum unravels because we’re no longer approaching the glory of Jesus with wide-eyed-wonder.
Instead, we’re maintaining events and schedules.
The tension with our pursuit of God is that we never arrive. It’s not about a destination. The more we see, the more there is to see. The more we know, the more there is to know. There more we encounter, the more there is to encounter. The more we worship, the more we want to worship.
Here’s my working definition of a healthy worship culture:
When a group of people lay down their lives for one another, forever pursuing the depths of God’s glory.
And when creativity is released from that place, look out! So many teams look at Hillsong, Mosaic & Bethel, and say, “Let’s do that!” And I feel like God is saying, “No, please don’t do that. Let me stir a new sound in you. Let me breathe a new song in you. But let it arise from the fire of my presence within you.”
Songs flow from the soil of a healthy culture.
The Seed of Songs
I once heard Brian Doerksen say that God doesn’t give you songs. He gives you seeds. But it’s your responsibility to grow them.
Great songs grow when those seeds from the heart of God are planted in a healthy, life-giving culture. The watering is the work. You can’t water a plant once and expect to reap a rainforest. The entire ecosystem of a rainforest is dependent on insane amounts of rain.
Go study the work ethic of a farmer. Too many of us stop at the seed stage and lose heart when it’s time to cultivate.
Want a great culture in your team? Relentlessly pursue God and relentlessly develop what He gives you.
#2: A Passion for People
When I started leading worship, I thought music was enough. But then I realized people didn’t give a rip about my creativity. You know what they wanted? Connection with Heaven.
One of the greatest gifts you can give your church is your unity. Unity to the vision. Unity with one another.
It can be tough. You don’t agree with your leader. You want to be scheduled more. You’re a better drummer than he is. You don’t like the songs. But nothing uproots a team and its influence faster than a lack of unity.
Embrace confrontation and prefer one another.
Here’s what you don’t want:
The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught.”
It’s a passion for the real thing—a pursuit that never stops.
What about you? How are you developing a healthy worship culture in your church?
This article originally appeared here.