I had the honor of serving at the Coaches Time Out conference this weekend. It was hands down the best conference I have been to in a while. I knew something was different when I didn’t see any skinny jeans, hipster beards or  horned-rimmed fake glasses but instead it was all track suits and golf shirts. I also was not asked how big my church was or what kind of guitar I was playing. If you feel that subtext you can understand how refreshing it was to to get out of my usual crowd. I know the change in demographic helped me to see and hear God’s truth through a different perspective. Here are 3 things I took away from the weekend that I know will help to make you a better worship leader.


 

1. Lead

I know, you already know this, I thought I did too, let me explain. At the first production meeting the conference coordinator pulled me aside and said something like, “Loren, I don’t want this to be like a Sunday service. There are a bunch of coaches here, if you want them to stand you need to tell them to stand. They don’t do well with the feel free to do whatever you feel led to do mentality.” That conversation put me on my heels and a bit of anxiety started to make its way into my heart. If I am honest, it is easy for me to become a worship musician instead of a worship leader, I don’t like telling people what to do or how to do it.

To effectively lead worship for a roomful of coaches I had to adapt, I am really glad Joe pulled me aside to talk or else I would have done what I do week in and week out. On any given Sunday there are all kinds of people in front of you, many with different learning styles. Are you leading all of them, or just the ones you are comfortable with?


 

2. Get Beyond The Music

At the conference they taught about 3 dimensional coaching, they stipulated that most coaches never get past the first dimension and here are the 3 dimensions they used.

1st Dimension – FUNDAMENTALS – Strength, Power, Cardio, Speed, Quickness, Technique, Repetition

2nd Dimension – PSYCHOLOGY – Motivation, Confidence, Emotions, Team Cohesion

3rd Dimension – HEART – Value, Identity, Significance, Worth, Character

I loved this because if you took Strength, Power, Cardio, Speed and Quickness out of the 1st Dimension and replaced it with Musicianship, Instrumental Skills and Vocal Skills you would have a guide for 3 Dimensional Worship Leading. We need to take our teams past the music and into the heart of the what and why of worship. If all you are doing is rehearsing music at your rehearsal you aren’t reaching your team’s full potential. But this might be the most counterintuitive part, your team will actually sound better, be a tighter band and connect with each other when you take them deeper, beyond the music.


 

3. Get Real

In the middle of one of the sets from the conference a coach yelled out, “The words aren’t right!” This was mid-strum mind you, I was immediately jolted out of whatever groove I was in .  My point here is that coaches don’t hold back, it is their job to get the best out of you. I know that I have shied away from sharing my inner thoughts during practice, but I might be doing my team a disservice because of my fear of confrontation. It is our job to make our teams better, you can’t do that by letting it slide, however it must be done in love.

 

 

Thanks For Reading,

Loren Miller

Helping People Worship

BFF “The Crash”

Jimmy 1-23-13

Vertical “5 Question Method”

Jimmy Kozy 10-31-12

@Home “What the gospel is NOT”

Austin McCann 10-24-12

Stop giving and become generous.

Service is the new fad it seems, volunteering is a resume builder now, required for graduation. While it is not necessarily bad, in the long run it does nothing.

We need to be transformed from selfish people who do good things every once in a while to generous people who don’t just give but are giving. Think about it…

So I am starting a series of posts, sort of little thoughts that are rolling around in my mind.

A popular song that brings tears to many eyes for various reasons. But true friendship is a gift from God, a spiritual discipline even. You see community is not a one way street, but when you give you find you get more in return. And we aren’t doing this for that reason, that is just the effect.  To know/be known, love/be loved are God given yearnings. However, in our day and time we often find community the most convenient way, we join one every week for an hour or so on this magical device.  This is where the 2 way street analogy comes in, I have to pick up the phone, stop by, make plans etc. and kick myself for thinking that I am too busy.

 

I want to thank my friend and fellow Pastor, Maggie Mraz for reminding me that Michael W. Smith was indeed correct!

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