Friday Five on Monday: Leading Worship

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I didn’t get as far as blogging on Friday, but I thought I’d catch up today. I got to help lead worship at our church yesterday, and I thought I’d do five things I love about that. I’ve been lucky enough to help out by singing occasionally since I was in college and going to InterVarsity. It was years and years before I realized it was actually a form of service – I thought “service” meant sacrificing and doing something you didn’t necessarily like. Like church nursery, particularly the toddler room. Surely worship team was too enjoyable to be “service.” I sort of forget about the time sacrifice, because I don’t mind it.

  1. Our church has three services: Saturday night, Sunday at 8:30 and 10:30. Sometimes if you’re on for Sunday, you practice Thursday night. I haven’t done that yet. I’ve only been on when you practice Sunday morning. We meet at 7 am. Which means I set my alarm for 5:30 am. On a normal day, if Zoey gets up at 5:30 am, I will tell her it is still the middle of the night, and she should go back to bed. I’m more of a 7 am kind of wake up person. Or maybe 8. While it’s way earlier than I like to get up for anything, leading worship is something that can drag me out of bed at that hour with minimal complaining.
  2. I love practice. As long as we’re not having technical difficulties, it’s usually a laid back and fun thing. I mean, I get to worship twice (or if it’s a Sunday, three times). Plus, I’ve probably been listening to the songs we’ll do for a few days, so come Sunday I am READY TO GO. Can’t wait for them. I also love the collaboration of practice. I love watching musicians work, because it’s amazing to see how people just hear something in their head and suggest it and we try it – sometimes it’s just the coolest thing, and I love being along for the ride. I still remember singing at InterVarsity, and the bass player suggested the song start with an instrumental of a Sonic Youth song and then work into the song we were doing. I don’t remember what either song was, but I remember being in awe of how great it turned out.
  3. I love the view. I consider it an honor to be in front during worship at church, because I get to watch others worship. Whether it’s a group of 40 or 600, when I look out and see a person completely lost in a song and therefore lost in God – well. I just can’t even put it into words. It’s incredibly touching to see people in such an emotionally vulnerable state, and it makes my heart swell. In that moment they are communicating with God in a special way. I’m incredibly grateful to witness it, and I don’t take it lightly.
  4. I just love singing. I love it. Whether I’m in the car or in front of people, it makes me happy. It’s hard to feel sad and discouraged after singing. Music is the thing that God has always reached me with, and I’m really grateful for that, too. I like learning new songs, and I love having them stuck in my head for days.
  5. I love the comraderie of being a part of the team. I’ve been on many different teams, and some have been better experiences than others. The majority have been great, and I have some life-long friendships that came out of it. On occasion it’s been more like a high school clique. But when you can connect with other people who feel the way you do about worship, it’s incredible. One thing I really enjoy about the team I’m on now is the prayer time before church starts. It’s a pleasure to sing with other people that are sincerely there to serve and worship God. It’s also fun to discover singing chemistry with different people. It’s really fun when to sing with someone enough where we just know what each other will do and our voices blend well, and I’ve been lucky enough to have that connection a few times. It makes things really easy. If I’m leading I’m thinking about making sure I do everything right and in the right order so everyone can sing along easily.  On harmony, I just get to worship and sing what I feel. I like both, but I think I like harmony a little bit more.
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