How do you spend the time in your team rehearsals each week?
Worship team rehearsal time can be some of the most valuable time each week.
But not just because we’re going over songs and service flow.
In fact, if that is all we are doing, we are missing a great opportunity.
For what, you ask?
A great opportunity to build relationship, build disciples, and build our team in ministry, service, and Christ-likeness.
Not only does that happen through the attitudes that are displayed, but in how we spend that time. It means doing more than just running through the songs and getting the parts right (although that is important).
Are you spending time in your rehearsal gathering in prayer and devotion?
I have come to believe that this can be some of the most valuable time we can spend. It doesn’t have to be extremely long. It doesn’t have to be extremely complex.
But not doing so means we will be extremely deficient.
How so? If all we are doing is running through music, we are missing out on connecting with the very reason we are doing what we’re doing. Without the connecting with Christ, then are we much different than any cover or garage band that has gathered for a weekend jam session?
Now obviously, if this is the only spiritual input your team members are receiving each week, you have some other issues to address. But skipping out on this step hinders the “teamability” of the worship team, even if they are all reading 14 Bible chapters a day.
I’ve found in my own experience that when I haven’t given this as much priority as I should, negative effects have built over time. It’s harder to work together, to be patience with one another, to be on the same page, and to minister in the strength of Christ instead of just our of our own skill sets.
Are we on the same page? Good.
Now you may be wondering…
“I would really like to include a devotional component into our weekly rehearsals, but where do I start? What do I do?”
As I said before, this doesn’t have to be lengthy or complex. I don’t think it needs to be a small group length study, unless your team agrees to that. You do still want to be respectful of people’s time.
The best worship team devotionals seem to be ones that either focus on some biblical aspect of worship or ministering together, or else ones that reinforce the biblical theme of the week (i.e. what the pastor is preaching upon).
You, as the leader, can be the one to lead it, or you can share the responsibility among different team members. I’ve done both.
You can either develop the devotional yourself, or you can turn to any number of resources available. Perhaps you might want to consider one of these (links are Amazon affiliate):
– Pure Praise – Dwayne Moore I haven’t used this resource personally, but have heard good things about. Takes members through a number of aspects of the why and how of worship over a number of weeks. Involves some personal study.
– Worship Matters – Bob Kauflin This is a book that I think every worship team member and church pastor should read. It moves will beyond the mechanics to the core issues of worship. It’s not designed as a study, per se, but the chapters are short and it could be easily adapted to a time of discussion.
– 7 Words of Worship I have not used this resource, but it has been recommended by other worship folks I know.
– Small Group studies from Robert Webber. I haven’t used all of these, but have used some. Robert Webber was a solid guy in the area of worship. You’ll get some good biblical grounding in these. They are designed as small group studies with individual workbooks, reading, and questions.
– Heart of the Artist – Rory Noland Again, I haven’t personally used this one, but it also comes highly recommended by some of my worship leading friends.
– WorshipMinistryDevotions.com This is a site maintained by Tom Krauter of Training Resources. He travels and does seminars on worship and unity in the church. It’s great stuff. I had him come to my last church, and it was great. He offers this site (subscription based) where you can access and download a weekly short devotional to use with your worship team.
– Blogger and worship pastor Jon Nicol offers a free 10-week worship team devotional called The Must-Haves for the Worship Musician. This are pretty succinct, yet meaningful devotionals. You might want to check that out as a starting point and then move to something a bit more involved.
Whether you have a time of three or eight or more, I hope you will invest some of that time in devotions and prayer.
The time invested will pay dividends far beyond what a similar amount of time spent on a song will. If you’ve never done this before, some of your team may balk a bit at first, but please persevere. You will see good things begin to happen.
It will be time well spent.
How have you incorporated devotions/prayer into rehearsal time?