Anything that we as humans do, in some way, shape, or form, involves other humans. No matter your type of work, you will most likely interact with other people. One career which requires much people-interaction is congregational ministry. In the context of the Christian church, we are called to live our lives with others, constantly growing in love, encouragement, and accountability. Whenever two or more people are together, a natural leader often emerges. As someone who thinks a lot about leading song in the church, I've wondered: What kind of leader will best lead music in the church? What leadership qualities will they embody? I’ve found a helpful perspective in Greg Scheer and his book, The Art of Worship: A Musician’s Guide to Leading Modern Worship.
The most prominent reoccurring theme throughout this book is the importance of good communication. It is absolutely essential to be a good communicator when leading a congregation’s music ministry. Scheer encourages song leaders to provide detailed instructions to the assembly you are leading in order to minimize confusion. I agree: communication is probably the biggest contributing factor in effectively leading a congregational music ministry.
Another important consideration in music ministry leadership is the call to serve others. As Christian leaders we are called first and foremost to serve. If a leader is just someone who barks orders, they will face challenges in gaining respect. Healthy leadership begins with serving those we lead, modeling the practices we hope they will emulate. In the context of music ministry, we need to be able to gauge, motivate, and utilize the gifts of those in our midst. In fact, that is a primary task of leadership in the church.
Leading people is a challenging task, especially in a ministry setting. To be an effective leader in music ministry, we must become effective communicators and servants. Those practices will help us become leaders who make a difference.