Worship leaders are among the most prominent and obvious leaders in the church. They are in front of congregations weekly helping people enter into corporate worship, primarily through music. So it seemed fitting on a leadership podcast to dig into the role of “worship leader.” To help Todd Adkins and I with this we had Stephen Miller on. Stephen is a worship leader at Real Life Church in Austin, TX and before that served as the worship pastor for several years in Saint Louis, MO at The Journey. He is an author and musician who has produced several albums (see the resources list at the end of the post for details.) In this episode we asked the following questions.
- What’s the difference between worship leading and music leading?
- How can a worship leader best work with a preaching pastor to put together a seamless worship experience (thematically, stylistically, etc.)?
- How do you balance skilled musical performance with not being showy or like a concert? What’s the place of musical solos, riffs, and the like?
- Since being a worship leader differs from other pastoral/staff positions, how do you blend your ministry with that of the whole church staff?
- Do skinny jeans and v-necks make worship leaders better at their jobs?
“When you’re leading worship you’re leading people.”
“Before you’re a worship leader you’re a worshipper. That should be you’re primary identity.”
“Cantatas, that’s not a Greek yogurt.”
“The best worship leaders I know are not just leading worship in their churches but are also pastor/shepherds.”
“In the end, the lead pastor is the worship pastor of the church.”
“The constant tension is to ask the question ‘what’s the purpose of this?’”
“What do worship leaders do during the week? Well, they better be worshipping!”
“One of the best things we can do as leaders is to open ourselves up to that clear consistent feedback as leaders.”
“From a congregant’s perspective excellence by the leadership makes worshipping in a seat or in a pew so much easier.”
“Let people lead with excellence where they’re excellent then let the governing body of the church oversee where it intersects.”
“If you have passions that are outside of your responsibilities, crush your responsibilities. Then look for ways to live that out.”
Stephen-Miller.com (Music, blog, book)