The Importance of Your Example in Worship

Whether you realize it or not, you are being studied by your congregation during the course of the entire worship service. Not just during the music – but during the sermon, the prayers, and the announcements.

And you’re not only being studied during the entire worship service – but before and after.

No pressure.

You might not think you’re all that interesting. You look at yourself in the mirror every day and are quite aware that you’re not a perfect person. Certainly there must be other, more interesting, more important people that are worth studying.

Maybe so. But the worship leader, however average he or she may be in real life, is one of the most-studied people in leadership at a church. Yes, I’m talking about you.

You are leading worship long before and long after the four or five songs during a service. Fair or not, and whether they realize it or not, people in the congregation have their eyes on you to see if you’re genuine, if you’re consistent, if you’re someone they can trust, and if you practice what you preach. If you’re expressive and engaged during the songs – but then doing a crossword puzzle during the sermon – people will notice the disconnect.

The solution isn’t to put on an act, to perfect the art of putting on a church face, or pretend to be someone you’re not. Rather, it’s to be aware that when you’re a worship leader, you don’t have the luxury of taking on and off that hat as you wish. Being aware of this will (or should) change how you view your role.

This isn’t something to be anxious about. Saying that people are “studying you” is different than saying people are coming to church solely to watch you. (If that is the case, you have another set of concerns…) People are coming, by and large, to worship God. When you stand to lead them, they’re understandably curious about whether or not that’s why you’re there too.

2 thoughts on “The Importance of Your Example in Worship

  1. amos5 October 13, 2010 / 4:42 pm

    Oh, so painfully aware of the truth of what you post above. And yet, so very exciting: as we get to lead and influence our churches all the time, what we do or don’t say and how well we do or don’t play actually matters less than we think! How we worship from the pews, in our home groups or smaller settings, how we worship when people who know us closely know we are enduring suffering and trails, how we worship in the midst of change and crisis – these are things that people can and do learn from us.

    Are we teaching them well at all of these times, though? Or do we only think they are watching when we have a mic in our face?

    Really love reading your blog, Jamie: I am recommending it as a worship resource to everybody who’ll listen. You’re a gift to more than just your church – thank you!!!

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