Leading Worship

When asked to lead worship, no matter how many you are leading- 1 child or thousands of people, no matter- it is the highest honor. There is no cause so worthy as worshipping the Most High God and leading that worship is so much higher an honor. It actually is leading in humility to lift up the name of Jesus. Leading the bow is fantastic.

So today I received that honor. We sang together How Majestic Is Your Name, There is Power in the Blood, We Bring the Sacrifice of Praise, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, A Shield About Me and The Cares Chorus. Such beautiful worship together. Praise God!😄❤

The Gig Tonight

We went to a gig tonight. It was at Old Town in Kissimmee. My husband (on guitar) and our lead singer filled in for a band we used to play with. In fact, we met in his band and married a few years later. But we network because any time a musician can express themselves with their craft, especially with other craftsmen to express themselves, we do that.

So, I was in charge of the GoPro and snapped a few pics. Strange going to a gig and not playing keys or singing. So, I ran a little sound and got some video feed and then had some time to kill.

So, my kids and I danced. I got to dance a lot. The band was really good, great songs and played really well and balanced. It was a rocking night.

So, this guy asked me to dance, maybe felt bad that I was dancing alone. And he taught me to Cha-Cha. I had never danced with a guy who led and I followed. And I had never danced the Cha-Cha with a guy leading me. Except that one time in college with the Spanish couple across the hall from my apartment in college and they had that party and insisted I come. But that was like 20 years ago.

Anyway, I learned something new tonight and it was so fun. I appreciated my hubby’s skill on thr guitar. I appreciated the leads. I loved hearing. When you play, you don’t hear the results the way the audience does. You feel it more than hearnit really, it is a combo thing. It is really cool to hear the finished product.

So we got home exhausted and very late and I drank about a gallon of water. But I am so very thankful to have learned a new dance or just even to follow a guy’s lead in a dance. And it is so easy to follow a good leader.

This reminds me that a good, confident, strong leader is easy to follow. When not good, confident or strong, a leader is difficult to follow. You don’t know what the expectations are, especially when it is something new. So if you are leading, be clear, be concise, be confident, be easy to follow. Because when that happens, it is fun and beautiful and you remove the stress and tension of it.❤

Playing Piano for Worship 101

I was taught piano by my mom (music conservatory trained) from a young age, before preschool, to play the piano. I am classically trained but also trained to play for church/worship. These are two differing philosophies. While both are fun and rewarding, one, classical, is played to show off your skills and the composer’s skills and one, worship, is to show off God. The key to being successful in leading hearts into worship lies in whether or not you have adequately prepared, and I do not mean having the chord sheets or notes ready or memorizing the song, though that is a tiny part of it. “You cannot teach what you do not know.” You will never lead another to worship if you are unfamiliar with the concept. You must worship as a lifestyle. Loving God, studying the Bible, praying, serving Him and others, loving people are all forms and extensions of worship to God. When you live in that and keep humble, God will play through your fingers when the time comes to smooth out any imperfections or distractions during live worship after you have practiced ahead of time and lived in this state of worship. As you are diligent to God, He rewards with blessings of being able to share that and draw them in. And do not underestimate the power of a sustain pedal and inflection- building up a song vs. quiet moments of contemplations. Be ok with pauses. Be comfortable in your skin. You play for God and not people. That is a key ingredient. I always sing, out loud or in my mind, while I play. When you mean it, you play from the heart fearlessly and just play for Jesus, like it is you and He in the room. I do this whether I play for Jesus alone or play before thousands of people gathered to worship Jesus. Same thing. Numbers never matter, but your heart does. I detest emotionless playing for worship. God deserves our passion, our putting of ourselves and intention into what we play for Him. We represent His worthiness to be worshipped when we play so it must reflect that. It is an honor and a privilege to lead worship from the piano and He blesses those who do it well, meaning from a heart of constant worship and dedication to God. Nothing is better, so do it right, do it well. Go with God!! ❤

Leading Worship for God

I was a worship leader/music minister at a church for a year to fill the gap. In addition, I have been serving to lead worship for many many years (at least half my life) on worship teams and in worship bands in various churches wherever I have lived. As such, and in addition to much Bible study on worship and strong prayer life, I have gotten a pretty good at spotting right ways and wrong ways to lead worship in church. I think a lot of things lend themselves to success at worship leading about church services and many things are quite opposing the worship of God. First and foremost is the defining of what “worshipping God” actually means. Praising God, talking about His greatness and love and attributes, is a strong component of it, of course. But worship is more than compliments. It is a humbling of oneself and lifting up of a superior Person, the God of the universe. It may be argued that to lead worship is an oxymoron because to properly lead, you are not on a “stage” at all but on your knees or face in humility. But I digress. Worship is a lifestyle. Worship is making everything not about you but about God. Obedience is the highest act of worship. Praise is kind of at the start or sometimes the tail of it. But I have been in MANY worship leading scenarios, supposedly, where it is really a self-glorification in disguise, quite the opposite of worship of God. People listening or participating in the audience were expected to clap, cheer and not for God but the talents He gave the beaming folks on the stage under the lights. True worship is honest, real, humble (keep going back to that word). I am happy when I am done playing and people are moved to tears not to clapping. I want to ignite a heart to God’s love and awareness of His presence in their lives and otherwise. That is leadership. Not that I am all that because I and not but He is. God is our victorious Maker, Creator of everything we know about. Nothing brings Him more joy than a sheep coming home and spending time with Him. Nothing. Praise and prayers are wonderful ascend ascend part of it. But when it becomes a performance, a show, a worship of humanity, a strict scheduled event, a gig, we have missed the mark, which is how the word “sin” is interpreted. The self has to fall off before anyone walks onto a worship platform and thankfully shares God’s incredible attributes to whoever will hear. It is beautiful to recognize God’s greatness together! It is uniting and secure and peaceful and exciting and joyful! And our body language must reflect it honestly coming from our own hearts right with the Lord. No greater purpose exists for us all, everyone, than to worship. And worship is not just singing and music, that is one aspect. The sound man is worshipping, the sanitation manager is worahipping. The deacons are worshipping. By obeying and doing what God has gifted them to do, we worship! More later, just a start of what I have learned.

Pointing Worship to the Cross

Humanism has seeped into the church, slid in smoothly and easily right before our eyes. I was a worship leader for some time as God led me to it. I noticed right away what was needed. We need to point people’s worship and attention to God, to Christ our Messiah and Savior. To Him the worship belongs. We honor Him by pointing people to Him. As soon as we look for applause or have a gleam in our eyes for accolades, we have started our feet on the path of failure at our job. Worship is all about how magnificent God is and not how great someone might sing or play. This worship leading vocation must necessary be the most humbling job on the planet. It is the basic of callings and what we are created for. We were made to worship. To lead people to that, we must let go of ourselves and our status. When we concentrate too much on rote and perfection, we can stifle the Holy Spirit’s movement. We must go where He leads and if His plans differ from what we planned, we must be eager to let go of control and agendas and strive to follow with every breath we take. A person who leads worship must be a person of prayer and Bible study and meditation. A worship leader must rise up to lead on his or her knees. Anything less and failure is looming. God is everything. It is all for Him and about Him. To be successful in churches country wide we must quit the humanistic shows and turn off the fancy lights that bring glory to people and get back to focusing on God. There is nothing wrong with a show, but church is God’s and a show is for people to make money or magnify themselves or for entertainment. This should have no place in a church. We need to give churches back to God and build His kingdom and not our own. This is vital to the life and integrity of the church. God deserves better from us.