So I have been a ‘Worship Leader’ full time for over 6 years now. I am still constantly learning, and hope to always be growing in this regard. I am so grateful for my position at Northstar Church, I have been here all 6 of those years and have seen this church grow and shrink and morph constantly, and it is very cool to see that from behind the scenes.
What I wanted to share is something that has really occurred to me just recently, and that is the seriousness of my job. I believe that a lot of times a ‘worship leader’ is just a guy/girl that is talented and thrown into it because of that talent, and a lot of times they flourish and grow with that. But I think because of that it sometimes seems as though the position is not as serious a position in the church. But I have come to realize that it is something you can not take lightly.
In Matthew 21 we see an angry Jesus. There are other times where you see Christ angry, but really this is the passage we see Jesus make a whip to drive people (and animals) out of His Fathers house, and he is downright mad. Why? Well we see Jesus convey that this it is a house of prayer and that the people were making it a den of thieves. Why are these people thieves? To be very business minded it’s a good spot to set up for these guys, they have a prime spot to sell goods that people need. Think of how much a bottle of water costs at a festival or sporting event, they can charge whatever they want because you aren’t going to leave the premises to go purchase else where, so they up charge the consumer. From what I gather from scripture, in regards to the temple, Jesus calls these people thieves because they are making money off of God. They are using His place, His commandments and twisting those things to make a profit.
Why are you leading worship? Are you just talented and leading worship cause you are ‘good?’ I think an angry Jesus is a very scary thing, and I think that there have been times in my ‘career’ where he has wanted to drive me out of His Fathers house with a whip because I have used his Father to make money. I know that sounds harsh, but it is true. If you are currently leading worship for just a pay check, I ask you to check your motive. Musicians are needed, talent is involved of course, but Christ sees your heart and you may be able to fool everyone around you including your staff or elder board or whatever, but Jesus sees who you are.
It is time for you to pause, and check yourself. Maybe it is time to make a whip and drive out your own ambitions in ‘worship artistry’ and get back to guiding people into worship, because that is your job. No matter what other people think your job is (including your pastor), it is to lead others into the throne room to worship the one true living God. How in the world do you expect to do this if you are just looking at this as a way to play music in front of people? How do you expect to do this if you are just using your talent to collect a paycheck? You can not effectively lead people to a place where you don’t go yourself. Pick up a guitar, put on a worship song in the car and sit there and worship in your spot and remember why you do what you do.
Rekindle that passion to worship and say to yourself – ‘I am called to lead worship because He is the only thing worthy of my worship. I am called to lead worship because I know He has gifted me in that area. So, I will use my gifts and talent for that and not to push myself into some form of ‘famous’ that seems on the human level more appealing at times.