Summer is upon us, soooooo:
Take some risks. This is a great time of year to bring up that new leader or bass player. It’s a great time to invest in some of your middle and high school kids who might have a little extra time on their hands. And speaking of taking some risks by sharing leadership, it’s also a good time to give these “green” leaders some extra slack and let them lead a few Sundays in a row. I’ve found that most people need reps back to back to back in order to settle in and really grow. Often, the first few times a person leads they are overcoming nerves and working on an in-ear mix that is actually helpful.
It’s probably time to go through your storage closets and reorganize. The weekly grind of worship ministry and dozens of volunteers has a way of leaving our storage and staging areas a mess. You might find some things there that you forgot about...things that might need to re-appear for Sunday usage. I’m sure there’s probably more than a few things that need to be thrown directly into the dumpster too. You might have to “Marie Kondo” some things too...if it’s not bringing joy, let it go! Maybe give it away to a church plant or sell it on Craigslist.
Summer is also a great time to call the band and organize a night to go out and see a really inspiring band. Check out the upcoming schedule for the venues close to you and see if there are a couple bands coming through that might be a fun night out for your worship leaders and band volunteers. It would be even cooler if your church was able to buy everyone a ticket. In addition to being a nice way to say thank you, it’s also a really good way of saying to the band, “This is the bar we are shooting for as players and singers”...but without having to ever say those words. Seeing great things always inspires me to practice again, and to learn something new.
Okay… another thing on taking risks... why not pick up a new instrument and learn everything you can this summer. Lay down the guitar and sit at the drum kit or maybe a piano. Or maybe you need to pick up that guitar and get some calluses. IMO, more worship leaders would do well to sit behind a drum kit a time or two — it’ll help in giving them the language they need to communicate better with the rhythm section.
What’s summer without road trips? Why not hop in the car and go see someone who’s in the same fight? Go see a worship leader or two who live an hour or so away, or maybe drive to see a pastor or a more-seasoned worship leader for a mentoring session. No one can make it in ministry on their own, and sometimes what we need is actual face time with other people who know what it is to lead teams and congregations. A day on the road with an up-and-coming leader is a real win, but even more so if the two of you are going to see and be with another leader. One of the great things about the Vineyard is that we have people all over the map doing kingdom work, but one of the challenges is that actual miles separate us from people who might be the source of wisdom and friendship that we need for our current season in life. Don’t wait for them to come to you...hop in the car and go to them!
Adam Russell is a husband and father of four. In addition to his role as the Director of Vineyard Worship, Adam is Lead Pastor of the Vineyard Church in Campbellsville, KY and also serves on the Vineyard USA Executive Team.