Today’s guest post comes from Jason Hatley, Pastor of Worship Arts at The Journey Church in Boca Raton, Florida. Jason is the Founder of WorshipLeaderInsights.com and author of two books as well as over a dozen worship leader personal and ministry growth resources.
I admit it… I may be the most un-hip worship leader on the planet.
This became immediately clear when I stopped by a local high school recently and I saw up-close what pop-culture looks like. If that’s hip, then I’m not!
Hip is a hot topic in worship circles these days and most of the new music coming out for churches reflects it. Worship Leaders are wrestling with the question of whether certain styles of music for congregational worship are just keeping with the times, or creating a culture of congregational onlookers and worship team performers?
Recently I kicked off this new series about what has become one of the major issues facing worship leaders and churches today: the decline of congregational singing.
Let’s face it… more and more congregations are singing “less and less”.
We’ve already talked about music being to high and too hard. And today we’re going to look at the third reason your congregation isn’t singing…
REASON #3: THE MUSIC IS TOO HIP I grew up in the 80’s, so that puts me on the back side of thirty-something. I’m married with two kids who roll their eyes at my jokes. I have a full-time job, a yard to mow and a shaven head by necessity rather than stylistic choice.
And while I am a musician, and desperately trying to hold on to some of the “cool” I think I once had, I find more and more that I’ve become… normal. And guess what… so are most of the people in my congregation. I would venture to say that’s the case for most worship leaders. There’s nothing wrong with being hip… I wish I was more hip.
But being too hip, especially in your music choices on Sunday, can make your congregation feel like I did that day I stepped foot on the high school campus: on the outside looking in.
So… how to do you remain musically relevant while not alienating the people you’re reaching?
Simply stated: Design your music to reflect who you are and who you are trying to reach.
When you understand who you are and who you are best able to reach in your community, you will select songs that the congregation can (and wants to) sing. And you will do your part to help the church fulfill this command and sing worship to the Lord.
Click here to read the full article.
PS – This series of articles on Congregational Singing was inspired by a leadership talk that I gave to my Worship Leader Gold network recently called, “Seven Ways to Help Your Congregation Sing (Lessons from John Wesley)”.
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