This is a post from my friends over at The Rocket Company. They do an awesome job of equipping church leaders to LEAD better. Check them out today!
Does this scenario sound familiar?
The hum of conversations floating around the sanctuary go quiet.
The worship service is starting.
The worship team starts the first song. Then they move to the next song…and the next.
But, as you survey the congregation, not many people are singing.
In fact, you see a lot of blank stares, and then—out of your periphery—you see the guy with his arms crossed looking like he’d rather be somewhere else.
You feel your insides deflate.
They must not “get it,” right?
Our first response is, oftentimes, to blame the congregation.
But, the reality is it’s our job (as pastors and worship leaders) to—through the Holy Spirit—invite people to a response and lead them in connecting with God.
Here are six ways to engage your congregation and lead them in worship:
1. Know your audience.
We have to know the people we’re leading.
The more we become students of our audience the better we’ll be able to lead them.
What struggles might they be facing? What did they walk into the room with?
2. Know your environment.
Oftentimes we need to change our approach depending on what environment we’re leading in.
For most of us we’re leading in the morning. It’s 9:00 am and we’re asking people to sing.
That’s the antithesis of what anyone naturally wakes up wanting to do. Well, most people anyway.
3. Help them see where they are.
Your job is to help people see and respond.
We do that oftentimes by acknowledging the season that someone may be in or acknowledging the ordeal they may be dealing with in their life.
When we speak that, as a leader, we’re making a connection to their hearts and they’re going to be more apt to respond and sing.
4. Help them see what we’ve seen.
We’ve got to know the people we’re leading and we’ve got to take them on this journey to see, to bask in, and to know the God we know.
5. Give them an opportunity to respond.
You need to make room for people to hear themselves. We’re inviting them to take the volume of their voices, raise them out, raise it up in the room, and make an awesome sound.
6. Call a response.
You need to engage your congregation, and invite them to participate before your band ever plays a note.
Here’s the thing. All of those steps don’t happen at random.
They require prayer and planning. And, that planning part is usually what creates the most headache. It can be a struggle to do that week in and week out. Join my friends at The Rocket Company for their next Whiteboard Session with Todd Fields—Director of Worship Leader Development at Northpoint Community Church—as he walks you step-by-step through how to plan creative worship services that engage your people.