7 Signs: When Worship is Just a Gig
Worship team members can be some of the most selfless people on the planet. They volunteer their time, spend countless hours in isolated preparation, and many spend hundreds and hundreds of their hard-earned dollars on their gear. But for those who are “volunteering” merely to display their talents, to them, they view “worship” simply as just another music gig. And even worse, their actions may be telling your congregation that their priority isn’t God, but self.
So here are 7 signs that a worship team member views worship as just a gig:
1. They Don’t Worship. During the parts of the songs when they don’t play or sing, do they clap, lift their hands, or sing? Or are they always using their downtime to tune their instrument, joke with someone on stage, or give off “I’m bored” body language? When a worship team member is excited about God, it’s validated by their on-stage behavior, and will become contagious to your congregation. Likewise, when someone on stage is apathetic toward the glory of God, it can also be contagious.
“Come, everyone! Clap your hands! Shout to God with joyful praise!” —Psalm 47:1
2. They Leave After Worship. Over the past year, we’ve sent out two or three tweets about worship team members who regularly leave after worship and we receive more feedback on this subject than any other. What are their responses? People are shocked—and even appalled—that a worship team member would leave once the spotlight is off of them. If you’ve been in a church for any length of time, chances are, something has come up that you’ve had to leave church and attend to. But those who frequently excuse themselves after worship make it clear that their priorities are anything but God.
“And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of His return is drawing near.” —Hebrews 10:25
3. They Don’t Come to Church When They’re Not Scheduled to Play/Sing. Most of us have taken a rare break from church when we’re not filling a role on a given Sunday. But for those who rarely attend church when they’re not scheduled to play or sing, it’s a pretty clear indicator that the glory of the stage is their priority. And for those who use the “I have to work” excuse, it’s kind of peculiar how they don’t seem to “have to work” when they’re scheduled for the stage.
“…And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day...” —Luke 4:16
4. They Don’t Tithe. Jesus said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21). So if a worship team member hasn’t fully given God their heart, why would they ever give God a tenth of their income? Jonathan Jenkins once said, “If you don’t trust God with your finances, you don’t trust God.” Tithing comes with maturity. We all had to reach a level of spiritual maturity and trust before we began tithing. But if someone has been on your worship team for years and they aren’t consistently tithing, it can only benefit them and your church to find out what (or whom) they’ve given God’s portion to.
“Will a man rob God? Yet you have robbed Me! But you say, ‘In what way have we robbed you?’ In tithes and offerings.” —Malachi 3:8
5. They Don’t Volunteer (other than on the worship team). As stated above, those who come to church only to show their talents in front of an audience are simply not kingdom-minded, but self-minded. Therefore, volunteering in an area that doesn’t provide instant recognition, to them, is unthinkable. As for those in your church who are volunteering in non-limelight positions (children’s ministry, food pantry, church cleaning, etc.), they are storing up quite a stockpile of treasures that will be awaiting their arrival in heaven.
“One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want.” —Proverbs 11:24
6. They Have Little or No Spiritual Fruit. Their days are spent acquiring all they can; their evenings are spent enjoying the fruit of their labor. No time for God…and little time for the people of God. As a result, they are spiritually bankrupt and have little or nothing of (spiritual) substance to offer to God or to others. On the other hand, those who do have spiritual fruit are the ones whom the bankrupt seek after when the chips are down.
“For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. For every tree is known by its own fruit...” —Luke 6:43-44
7. Pride. Selfishness. Perfectionism. Sexual sin. They complain, are unthankful and unteachable. These are all fruits of pride. To be clear, pride will eat your church like cancer from the inside-out; not to mention that it’s highly contagious. Many a worship team has fallen because of a pride source. Pride must be exposed, addressed, and uprooted. Don’t wait until it’s too late.
“God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” —James 4:6
If your church’s worship team struggles with these issues, contact ICWC today…
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