Have you ever been frustrated, confused, or saddened by a lack of response from the congregation that you’re leading in worship?
What can you do about it? And how do you know you’re even working on what’s really causing it? Well, let’s talk about just two of the dynamics.
THE HOLY SPIRIT
First, there are those unexplainable moments when we as worshipers (on and off the stage) are compelled by God's Spirit in our encounter with Him. It has little to do with the music and much to do with either His divine moving or (very often) our own choice in drinking from the Well and experiencing the spring that's described in John 4.
There's a spiritual dynamic when our hearts are engaged, our spirits are activated, and our bodies choose to express this sense of God among us…the reality of Emmanuel. Sometimes we deeply resonate with a truth we're singing, or we have a moment of intimacy and vulnerability with the Father, or we share the joy of being with fellow believers singing to our Creator. It's more than magical. It’s so beautiful and delightful that it seems to be removed from everyday life! I love that!
From a leadership perspective, what we can do to enable those transcendent moments is to listen to what God is saying and then obey. I think this obedience almost always results in us activating people - calling them to make a draw on the faith and Spirit in them. In the words of my friend Daniel Hazelwood: "I’m peering into heaven, looking at that model of worship, singing to a God who’s not far off. The God that I sing to is hovering in this room and He’s giving me windows, so I know when to sing, what to sing, and why." (You can listen to a podcast that goes more in depth here) This is the core of our calling as worship leaders: activating people.
Okay, so that's one side.