Chris Farley might be at your church next weekend...sort of.
I promise there is some application for us in here some place...just let me finishing wiping the tears out of my eyes. I cry every time I see this. So…
As worship leaders, we can completely leave members, regulars, visitors, guests, and first timers behind if we plan worship services that aren’t accessible. By accessible, I mean, worship gatherings that lack handles and don’t give everybody a chance to grab on tightly. While presupposing that worship services are to and through the Lord, there is a communal/social element of united groups that has to factor into our planning.
The mandate of every believer is to love God and love others. A way to love others is to learn to speak their language. Worship leaders direct the congregation vertically to look at the Lord, we also direct them horizontally to declare Him to the people around us. This might mean spending a few extra hours each week getting to know who you are serving.
Once you understand who you are serving, you are going to begin planning better worship services. Not only will you be leading familiar content, you will also be bringing your congregation along to new places of expression through new music.
One of the understood axioms on our team is to use the 80/20 rule. This means that during any given gathering, people will be singing 80% familiar songs and 20% new or unfamiliar songs. I find that the average church attender is not as familiar with the “latest & greatest” worship tune that has just hit the air.
One of the biggest mistakes I’ve made is introducing too much too fast. Once I hear a great song that I think it going to be immediately accessible to my church, I want to throw it in Planning Center and start singing it! I’ve found it best to hold off for a few weeks or months and let the song “bake” in me in my times of private worship before “going public” with it.
I guarantee your congregation will engage more quickly if the are singing something that doesn’t really depend on the screens. Once engaged in what the Lord is saying to them, they will be more likely to adopt to songs that might express their hearts to God in a fresh words.
The question for us is how to know when a song if familiar enough to be placed in the 80th percentile?