We were recently blessed to host a Leadworship Workshop with Paul Baloche. His first breakout, Worship Journey, was full of profound wisdom from this veteran worship leader as he spoke from his heart. I was given permission to post this video on this site for the benefit of worship leaders all over the world. Set aside some time to watch this video. It can change your life.
Here are a few of Paul’s insights (in random order):
- Flow begins with our ministry to God.
- We can’t lead others into something that we’re not practicing ourselves.
- Worship at its best is when we do publicly what we’ve been doing privately.
- Worship should feel like a journey to the heart of God utilizing songs, prayers, and scriptures.
- We need to move from being a song leader to a worship pastor.
- Always think about the people we are serving.
- Some of the most powerful worship can be with a mediocre musician with a heart for worship.
- Worship leaders are there to serve, like washing feet. Our churches are starting to look more like The Voice, with an us and them dynamic. We are not here performing or entertaining. Remove the us and them thing.
- We are pastors that create an environment that makes it easy for people to connect with the Lord.
- How do we keep our hearts fresh and alive toward the Lord so we don’t feel like a phony? We need 2 or 3 things that help us to connect with the Lord. We must stay fresh. If nothing is happening in us, how should we expect things to happen in our church.
- Begin memorizing familiar songs and medley them together. Wean yourself from songbooks. Get the songs off the page and into your heart.
- Learn 10 classic hymns. 10 classics from the 80s. 10 from the 90s. Have a balanced master list. Like going to a buffet. Have a variety. Don’t just get stuck in one style. Get the songs off the page Into your head.
- It should feel more like you’re singing prayers to God versus singing songs.
- Praying some lyrics will help with transitions by increasing your worship vocabulary.
Put songs in keys the congregation can sing in. The highest note should be no higher than a D.
- We need to go and minister to the Lord as priests.We need to back up and think about the ministry to the Lord in private and secret. Helps us keep our heart fresh to the Lord. A practical way to minister to the Lord is to sing Psalms and pray Psalms.
- The more we get in our heart, the more the Holy Spirit will lead us in worship to a scripture or a song.
- Think pastorally, picture some of the faces. Whisper some names. Think of the trials some of them have gone through recently. Pray for the families. “Break my heart for what breaks yours.”
- Doing this personal worship time will change everything. As you do this more, God will give you answers to your problems.
- Put some humanity and life into your worship leading. People so much DO NOT NEED A SHOW.
- Think about your verbal transitions practice them in rehearsal. Practice the transition as much as the songs.