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Pass it On

Tue, 25 Nov 2008 - 1:50 PM CST

Who's next? Who is coming behind you? Are things in order for your departure?


It may only be November but the time is coming for some of you to move on. Things in the future look great for you, but how about your youth group? Are they prepared for you to move on?


At National Fine Arts this year I was asked, "What do you do when someone who wants to be in the band doesn't have any talent?" At a later time we will discuss this in length but for now my simple response is "Have you worked with them?" Sometimes we need to help others try to discover their talents before we simply say they don't have any.


My Personal Journey:

In 9th grade I wanted to be in the worship team. I liked to sing, but had never been part of a team. I also wanted to play guitar. I asked Josh Silverburg, a Senior and the worship leader at the small Christian school I attended, to teach me. He taught me by involving me in everything he could think of. I learned most stuff by having a new song put in front of me with him teaching me the chords. The next day he would have me play it in the band. For him great things awaited. He went on to become the lead singer of the Christian band Edison Glass, but before he left he started teaching me how to play guitar and lead worship. The following year I started leading worship at my youth group and continued to be taught by the next senior worship leader at my school, Peter.  At the end of that year he, along with the teacher overseeing worship, prayed over me to become the next school worship leader. Looking back it is amazing to see how prepared I was because of other student leaders. My last year of youth group I spent time training up the next worship leader, and she did the same the following year.


Here are some simple techniques to pass it on:

  1. Have a teaching time each practice. Have more experienced musicians/singers work with less experienced musicians/singers.
  2. Give them the opportunity. It may not sound the best, but let them play along at times. Practice is one thing but "live" is another. Then follow up with helpful and encouraging words. Mistakes will happen and that's ok. Remember we all made them. It is how we learn.
  3. Give the inexperienced player/singer the opportunity to play with the experienced in a practice so they can feel and hear how it is suppose to.
  4. Teach them what worship is, what it means to lead others and that worship is more than just music, but that it is life.  It sounds simple, but this is the most basic part that can easily be overlooked.
  5. Pray about the right person to follow you. He or she may not be the most talented person, so it may take extra work.  It is very important you pray about it and tell your youth pastor.  It's always good to keep them in the loop.
  6. Each worship team will have different obstacles and methods that will work.  Just remember that the most important thing is inclusiveness. Make sure everyone one from beginner to experienced knows they are a vital part of the team. This will encourage growth both musically and spiritually as all parts work as one.
  7. Work your way out of the team. As you develop new singers/players/leaders, let them take the lead more and more so your departure will be smooth, like nothing ever changed... because it's about God, not us.


What are you leaving behind? Will worship and ministry continue the same or even better? Believe it or not, it's not up to your youth pastor to take care of all that. A good leader (all band, worship team, sound included) will train up others to leave behind. That is what the Apostle Paul did with Timothy, encouraging and guiding him to become one of the leaders of the early church (I and II Timothy). I would encourage you to do the same with the next generation of worship leaders, guitarists, vocalists, soundmen and the list goes on. It is amazing to form a great worship band and have great worship, but it is even more a blessing to come back a year later and see students you trained taking it to the next level. Go pour into others. Pass it on!


rock hard, worship harder

~brad bichsel~



Please feel free to contact me to talk more about worship and worship leading.

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