expressive worship

Relationships Up, Down and Sideways

During the Christmas season, I think a lot about my relationships with family, friends, and neighbors. I’m reminded that, whether I am speaking at a worship conference, working with an artist, or out shopping somewhere, I need to keep this proverb in mind:

“A good name is more to be desired than riches.” (Proverbs 22:1)

When I interact with people I want them to be honest with me, respect me, and even show a little kindness on top of that. So I need to follow the same standard with them!

That kind of relationship building with others can go a long way to help your ministry in your church. And if you’re out on the road, trying to make a career in the music industry, then I would advise you that honesty, loyalty, and integrity are key ingredients to a lasting career as well.

But it isn’t just the “sideways” relationships with others that I need to be concerned about; there’s also the “up and down” relationship between me and God. Proverbs 3:3-4 says “Never let loyalty and kindness get away from you. Then you will find favor with both God and people.”

I believe I need to be in right relationship with God, too, for many reasons. I’m less self-absorbed which allows me to think of others. I don’t worry so much about getting credit. If I’m taken advantage of or ripped off, although it may discourage me, it doesn’t derail me.

Being in right relationship with God teaches me to forgive because I’ve been forgiven. I seek other’s interests, not just my own, and it causes me to be grateful instead of demanding. I become more compassionate. And that’s just the beginning!

Career-wise, a right relationship with God helps me be more creative. I believe the Almighty is the author of creativity, and if I have a relationship with him, I can tap into that creativity.

In fact, I always say that in rehearsal my job is to create freedom in the room so the Spirit can move. And when the Spirit is moving, ideas seem to bounce all around and come from everybody in the room. Rehearsals are exceptional when this happens!

And I also believe the Lord is my provider. Yes, I work hard. Yes, I have found a niche in the music industry. Yes, I have a great team, a wife that supports me, and kids who give me grace when I travel so much. But I truly believe none of the success I’ve achieved would have happened without God and his provision.

By the way, I just want to let you know… it’s not that I have it all together! But because of my relationship with God who has forgiven me and treated me with so much grace, I now have a model for how to treat others.

So when I’m in right relationship with man and right relationship with God, I’m more creative, more teachable, more confident, more aware, and more compassionate. These are attributes that will help me experience true success in my career!

And that’s what I want for you: to be a success on the platform or in a music career that will inspire artistry, strongly minister to others, and bring fulfillment to your life!

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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. Chris Lovejoy says:

    Thanks Tom, really needed that word today. May God continue to bless you.

  2. Angie says:

    I love this, Tom. Thanks for sharing!

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