Kingdom Servants

This week’s QUESTION FOR RESPONSE was:

 

What aspect of your ministry through music and worship leadership gives you the greatest sense of Kingdom accomplishment?

 

Here are some of the responses I received to the posted “Question for Response.”  Several of these are compilations of multiple responses that were very similar.  As promised, names are withheld to promote candid responses:

o    My greatest sense of accomplishment for the kingdom is when one of the children that has been in my children’s choir or has been one of my Sunday School students, comes to know the Lord Jesus as their personal Savior.  There is no greater joy than to think that in some way I contributed to their understanding of their need for a Savior.

o    My greatest sense of accomplishment for the Kingdom comes when my choir “gets it”. I really try to instill in the choir that they, too, are worship leaders, not just me. When the choir worships during a special or during the congregational music, I know that God is pleased and that He is speaking through them. Time and time again I have told the choir “We will work to get the music as close to perfect as we humanly can. However, I am willing to sacrifice some rhythm and notes here and there as long as we are getting the Spirit of the song right and are worshiping when we sing.” That, to me, is the best way to lead our congregation in worship and into worship.for us to worship  and not be preoccupied with the mechanics of the song.

o    When I see a student begin to show signs of understanding what a song means, or why we sing it in worship I feel I have accomplished something for the Kingdom.  Although it is true for any age group I find it especially meaningful when one of our youth catches on to what music in worship is all about!

o    I have taken several mission trips with different age groups.  Music has a way of breaking down barriers in other countries and when that happens I feel like we have done something that will have eternal value.

o    Sharing my faith in music with passion.

o    When a child, youth, or adult passes a milestone in their life musically or spiritually and I have had part in helping them (like learning to sing on pitch or beginning to play guitar), I have a sense of accomplishment that will last.

o    When I stand to lead worship I have confidence that it is about God and not me.  I feel close to God in those moment

o    Watching young people grow to become leaders.  Not just in music but in all phases of the church.

  •  I have found that among all the aspects of music and worship ministry that I am involved in, I get the greatest sense of accomplishment in seeing people that I have worked with become leaders themselves. One might think that the thrill of leading worship, seeing a massive pageant come together, directing a full choir or building a program would be the facets of ministry that would rise to the top of the list.  These are all wonderful when they happen, however, I feel the greatest sense of satisfaction in the results that I see with a handful of people. In ministry it is not possible to invest in the lives of your entire church congregation.  It is possible, however, to focus in on a few key people.  They, in turn, are able to invest in the lives of others as well as using their gifts and talents for the benefit of worship and praise to our almighty God. It is amazing to see kingdom work carried out when the body is “fitly framed together, growing unto an holy temple in the Lord”. (Eph. 2:21) It is, indeed, a thrill to lead in worship, but it is an even greater thrill to see those that I have invested in leading others in worship. As always, we must be careful to have the attitude of the psalmist when he said, “not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but to Thy name be the glory”.

I find these responses to be an encouragement and very positive word that I want to pass on to pastors and other church leaders.  I am afraid that too often many look at music ministry as something that entertains rather than understanding its profound effect in Kingdom work.  The old “there’s no business like show business” jowokes do not really apply when you hear the heart of the vast majority of our worship music leaders.  I say that with great confidence as one who fellowships often with so many of our ministers through music.  The words in these few representative responses above should demonstrate the real heartbeat of those serving in music ministry leadership – and these responses are not just from professional ministers of music.  They include replies from children’s choir leaders and others.

There is a level of maturity reflected in these representative replies that I am convinced we desperately need in our churches.  A Kingdom perspective that is critical to the churches’ ministry, and often undeveloped in less mature ministers.  This is part of the reason I often appeal to churches not to throw away good leaders, ministry practices, or methodologies just because they are “old.”  Biblical truth, trusting in the Holy Spirit to work, and worship itself are all quite old realities.  Granted we must always be fully aware of our context and make appropriate adaptations accordingly, but we need a balanced response that is careful to keep a right focus on God as the subject and object of our ministry with the people we serve and those to whom we will proclaim Christ as Lord!

Having just returned from a week with teenagers at the Georgia Baptist Youth Music Camp I have been freshly reminded of dependence upon the Holy Spirit to do His work.  I went to the camp with a game plan for teaching the music, reflecting on the meaning of text and underscoring biblical foundations of the songs, while at once developing a sound and moving toward a Saturday “end of week concert” before parents and friends.  The balance of voices was less than perfect.  The group was younger than expected.  The music was a bigger challenge than anticipated.  A group of adults, fellow music ministers, stepped up to help and worked to bring about a positive result.  The students responded to the challenge and worked extra hard to conquer the music.  On Friday night in a time of opportunity for open response, students stood to testify of lives changed, commitments made, lessons learned.   Themes of the week turned out to be humility in lives of worship and strengthening of Christlike character, and understanding our place in the stream of endless praise of our God in Christ.  The Spirit spoke to me deeply about all of those through these students and their leaders.  All of which affirms what the statements by many of you in response to this week’s question mean.  God is still at work in us, through us, and among us.

Lord, help us to remain sensitive to You in all we do.

Humbly seeking to be more like Jesus,

Paul

QUESTION FOR RESPONSE (replies will be kept anonymous):

 

What aspect of your ministry through music and worship leadership gives you the greatest challenge while striving for Kingdom accomplishment?

Explore posts in the same categories: Choir Ministry, Church keyboard players, Church Music, Leading Worship, Singing Worship, Spiritual formation through singing, Worship Leaders, Worship Pastors, Worship Reminders, Worship thoughts, Youth Worship

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