8 Important Things I’ve Learned in 40+ Years of Being a Worship Leader

by vernsanders on September 27, 2010

Every month I write an article for Monday Morning Email (which you should subscribe to if you are reading this and you are a church musician…). The latest one concerns some important things I’ve learned from being a worship leader. You can get all the details here, but here are the 8 things:

People Feel Strongly About What is Familiar to Them

Unless Everyone in the Building is the Same Every Week, There Will Never Be Complete Agreement on What is Familiar

Whatever Worked Wherever You Were Before is Not a Formula For Success Where You Are Now

Whether You Like It or Not, Someone is Always Watching the Clock

Without Rehearsal You Never Know What is Going to Happen

Without an Established Level of Trust, Creativity Can Be Misunderstood

As Creative as You Think You Are, It is Still Not About You

Evolution is Better than Revolution Unless the Situation is Desperate

You may not agree, but I think these things are important. Please leave a comment and let me know what you think. I’d love to hear what you’ve learned…

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Cathy Kelso September 27, 2010 at 10:15 am

Last example cracked me up :-) . I am much more a revolutionary by nature. We got through the “wars” fairly smoothly by being an equal opportunity offender. I love the Biblical examples of getting the army to shoot each other instead of you (okay, that was just mean). Really we changed slowly and gradually. I call it “boiling the congregational frog”. Warmed them up a little at a time until they were cooked. Now we’re blended or pureed, or something, but it works.

vernsanders September 27, 2010 at 1:02 pm

I like the frog analogy…I’ll have to remember that one…


Margaret Marcuson October 6, 2010 at 12:44 pm

Vern, this is a great list. Pastors as well as musicians really need to know these things (especially the part that “it’s not about you.”

vernsanders October 6, 2010 at 4:16 pm

isn’t that the truth…



jim van matre October 25, 2010 at 11:28 am

so where is the controversy? that was not a difficult article on pastors – just very practical….you presented in a well-thought out manner too

good job -

vernsanders October 25, 2010 at 11:25 pm

Thanks, Jim, I appreciate your comment. Perhaps there is more controversy in this one, where I talk about pastors: http://is.gd/gha4B



Bob October 26, 2010 at 8:48 am

Re: October 25, 2010
Don’t you think that a church with a pastor who is poor at preaching or with out great managerial skills can still do well if he loves the people where God called him?

I have seen great orators, well educated speakers with managerial skills to rival some CEO’s. They could manage the time you need to use the restroom or be gone to lunch down to the second…BUT (there always has to be a but) they either didn’t care for their congregation or didn’t know how to show it.

You can love most people into something easier than you could beat/coerce/drag/shame them into it and usually with much better and longer lasting results.

Just my $1.00′s worth.
Bob P

vernsanders October 29, 2010 at 5:20 pm


That was my point exactly. Just because a pastor is or is not a great orator doesn’t make that person a great pastor.


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