“We need more singers and musicians!”
“We need more singers and musicians!” This is the cry heard from my department daily. Granted, we are a large church but we also have 6 different worship teams to put together every week. I need quality players and singers in volume. For example, our weekly needs look like this:
FIVEVILLE (4 weekly services for our 4 & 5 year olds)
3 singers 3 dancers
KIDS ON THE MOVE (4 weekly services for 6 yr olds – 5th grade)
5 singers 15 dancers 5 band (1 drummer, 1 keys, 2 elec gtr, 1 bass)
180 JV SERVICE (1 Wed. night service for 6th-10th graders)
2 singers 5 band (1 drummer, 1 keys, 2 elec gtr, 1 bass)
VARSITY SERVICE (1 Wed. night service for HS juniors – 22 yrs old)
1 singer 4 band (1 drummer, 1 keys, 1 elec gtr, 1 bass)
WEDNESDAY MAIN (1 main stage adult service)
4 singers 6 band (1 drummer, 2 keys, 2 elec gtr, 1 bass)
WEEKEND MAIN (3 main stage adult services)
6 singers 6 band (1 drummer, 2 keys, 2 elec gtr, 1 bass)
So as you can see we have a lot of positions to fill. Now let’s go ahead and admit it – as worship pastors we can get comfortable with the teams we have in place. We know their strengths, their work schedules and we develop a rapport with the people we rehearse with and lead services with week in and week out. And thank God for that! It takes a lot of diligence and patience to come up with effective lineups that we can count on to pull off service after service. But the trap is that we can lean too heavily on volunteers whose lives are transitioning, whose jobs are changing, who are getting married and moving across the country, who, honestly, may not be a part of our church six months from now. In that light we are constantly on the lookout for more talent. Here’s how we continually develop musicians and singers at Church On The Move:
WE START THEM YOUNG
We get kids and teens involved as early as we can. We’ll start them singing and dancing in Fiveville and Kids On The Move. The first thing they’ll learn is how to be energetic and engaging. We’ll also tutor our younger singers and players so that in a few years many of them will easily make the jump to the next level.
WE KEEP THEM ENGAGED
We make sure the music they are singing and leading is age appropriate for them, music that they are genuinely interested in. It’s difficult to get a 16 year old excited about singing a worship song that was popular 10 years ago. Conversely, a 40 year old won’t relate to music that seems too young for them. Musicians need music they can relate to – therefore it’s a necessity to match singers and players with music that motivates them and keeps them wanting to come back and serve each week.
WE SET THEM UP TO SUCCEED
Nothing’s more frustrating than being asked to do something you have no gifting for. We carefully match up singers and players with music they can easily wrap their heads around. If someone’s not ready to lead a song vocally, they sing back-up vocals. The same goes for musicians (ever ask a young drummer to play a shuffle?). We find what their strengths and weaknesses are and make sure they are given songs that they can easily nail. Once they have confidence that they can successfully do what we ask them to do, then we let them branch out from there.
WE CREATE A COMMUNITY
The only distinct difference in our 6 different worship teams is the ages of the worshippers we lead each week. Otherwise, all of our teams operate with the same principles of character, preparation and devotion to the church. Our team members understand that it’s just as important to give your all whether your leading 5 year olds in worship or leading songs on the main adult stage. My most accomplished musicians and singers who regularly sing on the main adult stage realize that I could send them to Kids on the Move or any other service at any time so that they don’t lose sight of what our church is all about. And in that we create community – all of us giving our time and talents for a common purpose: to make great music, to become better musicians and to serve the people of Church on the Move.
We believe that purpose breeds enthusiasm, and enthusiasm attracts more people to want to be a part of what we’re doing.