Going it alone really, really stinks! Oh, it can kill you too. You may have friendly people on your teams, but how do you actually become friends?
Packing up the dreams God planted, in the fertile soil of youth… sorry to get that one stuck in your head.
I'm stunned whenever I meet with a worship team that only does music together. Conversations are warm but shallow, we carry our own burdens in…and then out, we hear scripture in the songs but don’t open the Book together, there’s learning that’s happening but we don’t share it with each other, and we’ve never shared a meal or been in each other’s homes.
That’s so, so sad.
Maybe you’re experience isn’t that bad, but I bet you can be more intentional to go deeper, grow spiritually, learn intentionally, and experience human community. Every week, I’m helping bands to play better together, so I certainly value creating fantastic music. The tragedy comes when that’s all we do. And I get that it’s a musical rehearsal, but if we’re intentional, we can build so much more than great music. There’s this unspoken sentiment that says “well, we have to get the music down…if something else happens, it’s a bonus.” So often, there’s no bonus. Sad face.
How can you be more intentional?
If I’ve led your team, you’ve probably heard me say “I have a rule. I don’t lead worship with strangers.” And then I break out the (dreaded) question: “What do you wish I knew about you? And you should probably share the first thing that comes to your mind.” All it takes is a little question to give people the chance to begin sharing themselves. Be interested in each other…ask curious questions.
We are to take great pains until…Christ is formed in each other. Have a different band member lead a five-minute devotional each time. Take your bible and open it up and read a psalm together. Pray for each other. Stop taking so long doing inefficient sound checks and making copies of chord charts at rehearsal so you carve out space for this.
I believe that we’re learning all the time…a little here, a little there. It’s one of the reasons I share on Twitter and Facebook. I reflect on an experience and find a nugget of learning and share it. How did you get that part of the song down? What made those voices work well on that song? What is going through your head/heart when you sing this song? As a leader, you can simply ask “What are you learning with this music tonight?”
Experience Human Community
Be Italian already! Eat! (together) There’s a church whose worship team eats a meal before each rehearsal. Every week, a different team member brings a simple meal to share together the thirty minutes before they play. Get this: the band, the tech, and sometimes even the pastors eat and talk together. Hey start doing this even once a month and see where it goes.
So let me ask you this: Are you friends with the people on your team? (and that sounds like a pretty good definition for a friend: a person you go deeper, grow spiritually, learn intentionally, and experience human community with.)