I am sharing ten practical ways to engage your congregation in worship. I have learned these methods through my many wins and losses as a worship leader.
My prayer is that these ten tips will inspire you to grow in your gifts, so that the church will rise up to its boundless, artistic, and powerfully anointed potential!
4. Be Confident
Have you ever been led by a nervous worship leader? I know for me I can’t even look at them. I get so nervous for them I have to close my eyes. Having nerves isn’t a bad thing, it means that you care — but the more confident you become, the less nervous you’ll be.
So how do we learn to lead with confidence?
No. 1 – It’s being secure in God’s love for you.
Nothing could be more simple and childlike, but this is the most profound truth that will determine the whole of your life! Whenever you lead, you put yourself at risk for criticism. Leaders are on the front line and will always take the hardest hits, but being secure in God’s love for you will give you confidence as you lead.
No. 2 – Remember that God has called you!
When I was 11 I sensed that God was telling me He was going to do great things through me. It wasn’t like thunder and lightning hit me, and it wasn’t even a calling in music specifically, but it was a sense from deep within that He was setting me apart to lead. I began to weep because my first thought was — You mean little ole me? Look how young and insignificant I am? But then I just felt an indescribable feeling of gratitude that God would pick someone like me. I share this with you because whenever I feel intimidated or afraid in a ministry situation, I go back to that moment and remember that Almighty God has called me.
No. 3 – Lead thousands of times.
There is no substitute for experience when it comes to leading with confidence. If you are in the beginning stages of becoming a leader, I encourage you to lead whenever and wherever possible.
I moved from Texas to California to go to music school so I could do “big things” for God. After my schooling ended, I found a church that needed a worship leader in one of their small groups. I remembered my Mom telling me once, “Tommy, make sure you’re giving your gifts away in one shape or another. Don’t wait for that perfect situation.” So there I was at Christian Assembly in Eagle Rock, CA leading in a small group. I said, “Lord, you mean to tell me I moved out here and educated myself to lead worship for a small group?” Well as the story goes, after leading worship for the small group several times, I gained confidence and eventually started leading for our weekend services. To make a long story short, God has allowed me to do everything I have ever dreamed of by just being willing to serve at a local church. All of this to say, if you want to be a great and confident leader, start leading!
Next week, I’ll discuss how being alert helps engage your congregation in worship.