Today the topic is how to change the culture of your worship ministry. We are going through eight practical steps to help you change the culture of your worship ministry. Be sure to read Part 1 of this post for the first 4 steps.
We’ll jump in on step five in just a moment, but before we do, I want to encourage you about two things that are really exciting to us that are coming up soon. One is our ReFOCUS Conference. It’s a worship conference in Pigeon Forge in the Smokies. We have Aaron Keyes coming and some other folks. It’s going to be amazing. We’re going to be at the Black Fox Lodge, a beautiful new lodge there, right in the heart of Pigeon Forge. Hope you can join us for that. Go to our website at NextLevelWorship.com/ReFOCUS for more information and to register.
The other thing I want to talk to you about for a moment is a worship leader coaching that we start again in January. A group of us will be going through some very important practical things to deepen our leadership ability and we’re going to start by focusing on your personal leaderships. I hope you can join us for that. You can go to our website at nextlevelworship.com/training/worship-leader-coaching/ for more information about that.
Now, let’s jump into how to change our culture. Just so you know a little background on me, I have worked in many different churches and different sizes over the years and I’ve found myself having to come in after culture’s already been established in certain churches. That is difficult to do because a certain philosophy and certain habits are already ingrained in people, so it takes time to change those habits and change that philosophy and change that culture. That led me to write out these steps that I have used to help transform the culture of the worship ministries that I’ve worked in.
5. Mentor individual members in character and competencies.
Let’s start today with step five. (Steps 1-4 can be found here.) If you want to learn of the first four steps, you need to check out our part one of this podcast. Step five is to mentor individual members in character and competencies. There’s three parts to that. It’s very important.
First of all, identify them. Who are those people? Not everyone is ready and willing to be mentored. Mentoring requires face to face interaction and an invasion of some personal space. Much prayer and discernment is needed to know who should be mentored and by whom.
The second part is to challenge and teach them. Mentoring is a step above classroom style teaching or discussion groups. Mentoring someone means investing your life into that person for a period of time and intentionally helping him or her grow.
Finally, hold them accountable. In Proverbs 27, verse 17, Solomon wrote, “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.” Help those you mentor to set goals to grow spiritually in leadership and in their skills development.
6. Empower and expect your overseers to mentor others.
Give them guidelines and parameters. Mentoring is the most important part of this entire process. It will be your key to years of continued growth and ministry success.
Mentoring is the most important part of this entire process. It will be your key to years of continued growth and ministry success.
To be most effective and enthusiastic, your overseers need to know your expectations and where their boundaries are regarding mentoring. Carefully explain what you need them to do and not do.
Encourage them. Mostly likely, many of the overseers in your ministry have full-time jobs, families, and tons of other responsibilities. Be patient with them and empathetic to their full schedules and life pressures as they carve out time to pour into others.
Finally, continue to coach them. Many churches tend to place someone in a position of leadership and then leave them to their own devices. It’s like we barely teach them to swim before we throw them into the middle of the lake to survive alone. Check in with your leaders occasionally and keep an open door of communication in case they need your help or advice.
7. Evaluate your team’s progress and adjust as needed.
Compare your ministry’s values to your activities to keep yourself and your ministry on course. It’s imperative to take time to step back and see where you are. Have you made any real progress? What have you done up to this point that directly supports your stated values?
Assess individual skills and accomplishments. After months into this growth process, you now need to access the skills of your band members, singers, and tech team members. What has each one learned? How have they improved? Are they still in enthusiastic about growing and about serving the Lord in the worship ministry? One way to know is to schedule time to sit and talk with them.
Third, innovate for more change. Think creatively about ways to improve your process and better serve your team in church. No matter how much you may have honed your plans, be willing to change them. If some part of the plan isn’t working well, then do something different. Constantly ask yourself, “What can we do better to reach our goal of growing our team?”
8. Repeat these steps over and over.
Recognize that real change takes time and patience. There’s no cookie cutter approach to discipleship, and there are no instant out-of-the-box solutions for helping people grow as worshipers, musicians, and mentors.
There are no instant out-of-the-box solutions for helping people grow as worshipers, musicians, and mentors. It will take time. Lots of time.
Refine your vision and never lose sight of your calling. It’s not ultimately your job to help someone mature. That’s God’s role as the author and finish of our faith. Just keep faithfully repeating these important steps. He’ll do the rest.
Finally, realize that people need constant reminding and reshaping. Paul said in Philippians 1:6, “And I’m certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” Learn to look beyond the warts, issues, and imperfections of your team and know that God is making them and you into His perfect image. Never give up on them. Pray for them. Show to them the same graciousness they show to you.