expressive worship

The Enemy of Love

The last article I wrote kind of opened a can of worms! Not that I didn’t expect it.

A lot of people had opinions… In fact, there were a lot of well-thought out and thought-provoking perspectives. Check out the article What Real Worship Is and the comments here…

And since we all play and sing in many different denominations and church settings, I can’t say what’s right for you. But there is one thing I am sure of: we need to love the congregation.

1 Corinthians 13:1 says “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.”

I like to put it this way for worship teams… love is the attitude of wanting to GIVE anything you can for the benefit of each person in the congregation. Part of love is giving – not thinking about yourself, but thinking of others.

So my question to you is, when you’re on the platform, are you giving? Or are you self-conscious? Because if you are self-conscious, you’re not loving your congregation!

Here are some good tests to see if you and your team are loving your congregation:

  • While you are on the platform, if you are thinking “I need to be humble,” or “I want people to see Jesus, not me!” – if those are your thoughts, you’re self-conscious.
  • Are you thinking “Should I lift my hands in praise?” or “Should I move?” – if you are, you’re self-conscious.
  • While you’re on the platform, if you’re thinking “I hope the pastor likes this,” or “I hope the congregation likes my voice” – if you are, you’re self-conscious.
  • If you are on the platform thinking about how you look, what you’re wearing, or what you sound like – you’re self-conscious.
  • Standing on the platform, if you are thinking “I can’t hear the monitors, I wish the sound guy would turn them up,” or if you’re preoccupied with the musical part you’re playing or singing – then you’re self-conscious.

Don’t get me wrong! It’s a good thing to be humble, have the pastor like you, hear the monitors, and play or sing your part correctly! But these are the things you need to practice and wrestle with before you walk out on the platform – in your prayer closet, woodshedding at home, and at rehearsal.

Because self-consciousness is the enemy of love. And loving the congregation and leading them with authority is what you’re called to do.

For more on loving the congregation, check Tom’s Expressive Worship DVD: Love the Congregation.

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Tom Jackson

Tom Jackson, world renowned Live Music Producer, helps musicians and worship teams develop songs into “unique worship moments.” His Live Music Methods help create freedom in the room so your congregation can express their worship more freely and passionately than ever before! Tom has worked with nearly every genre from rock to pop to Christian Gospel, impacting major artists and worship leaders such as Jars of Clay, Casting Crowns, NewSong, Sidewalk Prophets, Chris Tomlin, Francesca Battistelli, Todd Agnew, Phillips, Craig & Dean, Parachute Band, The Martins, plus a multitude of independent artists.

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  1. Douglas says:

    Awesome word. I will read this to my praise team. It will be challenging to them and me.

  2. Susan says:

    Wow! I need to read this a few more times! …and practice it tonight!

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