Church, Music, and some other stuff

Worship Leaders – 4 Ways to Encourage People To Worship

Screen Shot 2015-03-25 at 11.23.00 AMIf you’re reading this, I’m assuming you’re a worship leader, church leader, or something similar to that.  And it’s very possible that you’ve been in a service, like I have, where it seemed like the worship was just… dead.

If you’ve never been in a service like that, congratulations on reading this to simply better yourself.  For the rest of us, we need some help.

Whether you’re leading worship in a boring religious service, or a “things get crazy” Holy Ghost throwdown, there are a lot of ways to effectively encourage those around you take that next step in their worship.

Before I talk about a few things that have helped me over the years, I want to be clear in that; just because someone isn’t raising their hands or showing the typical signs of worship, doesn’t mean that they aren’t worshiping or that God isn’t doing something inside of them.  I wrote a post on that exact thing here.

1. Worship, but don’t get lost in worship

Yes, I’m saying hold back on your worship if you have to!  This may go against everything you’ve ever been taught, but allow me to elaborate by asking this question.  How can you lead if you are lost?  Your number one job as a worship leader is NOT to worship.  It’s to LEAD others is worship.

This is why worship leaders MUST have a personal worship time.  If the only time you worship is on stage, you are failing.  How can you lead others to a place you’ve never been?

2. Know your audience

I’ll continue that statement with: know your audience, see where they are, and build on that.  This is an obvious example, but I’m typically not going to ask a large group of older people to jump up and down.  And I dare you to ask a Southern Baptist church to lift their hands!  (I’m kidding…kind of)

It’s like when we come back home from a worship conference on fire and expect our congregation to have the same fire.  We’re jumping up and down crazy, asking them to start a praise train around the church, and they are looking at us like we’re stupid.  Because we are!  See where your congregation is, and take baby steps with them!

3. Watch the people who are engaged in worship

This is for your personal benefit.  But why?  It sure makes you feel a heck of a lot more confident, that’s why.  Don’t tell me that when you see those few people worshiping in a crowd of downers, it doesn’t make you feel a little more confident.  And people are much more likely to follow someone who is confident about where they’re going.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been in a service where no one is engaged in worship except for 1 or 2 people.  People are more likely to follow someone who is confident about where they’re going. Be aware of where everyone else is, but keep your eyes on those people who are engaged.

I’ve been doing this for years and it helps me stay confident and energized.  Try it next time you are leading.  Then come back here and let us know how it works.

4.  Expect God to do things you can’t

There is a lot of power in expectation.  When people gather in His name and expect him to do amazing things, he never fails to show up and work!  He is going to do much more for your congregation than you ever could.  So step out of the way and let him do it.

If you are reading your Bible and talking to God regularly, you can’t help but expect Him to do something big!  Because you know Him and how He works, and you know that He loves to touch his people!

What are some actionable things you do to be an effective worship leader?  Share in the comments!

It’s been a little while since I’ve posted, so thank you guys for sticking with me!  I’ve been working harder than I’ve ever worked in my entire life this last year on a new project that is really a dream of mine. And we are getting closer and closer to it’s release!  I can’t wait for you guys to get to be a part of it.

We have a simple page up at WorshipOnline.com if you want to check it out in it’s early stages before it releases!  We also have an Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter that you can connect with us through!  Do me a favor and follow/like us on at least 1 of those.  Building a brand from the bottom up is tough!  Thank you guys so much!

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2 Comments

  1. Eric T
    Eric T03-26-2015

    HI Shalon,

    I think that this is one of the best articles you’ve written yet. Your point of meeting folks where they are, but working to lead by confidence and example is wonderful. Especially when our confidence is in God. Point number 2 is so important for those of us in the Southern Baptist churches where so many folks do not connect with what many of us in the CCM/P&W arena desire to lead them in. I think in many cases, they just do not feel comfortable or understand that it’s okay to get a little emotional, as the Lord gave us these emotions to connect with as long as they’re God-centered.

    Thanks again

    • Shalon
      Shalon03-26-2015

      Thanks so much Eric! I like what you said about them not understanding. And too often we want to give up and just push them aside. But part of our job as worship leaders is to teach them.