Archives For Worship Leading Tips

I was visiting a church for a night of worship a few years ago. It was a well-known worship artist who was going through nearly every song in his roster. It was a deep night of great worship and great music. Finally we reached the end of the night, and the worship leader thought it would be fun to do a little “blast from the past”.

Announcing they were about to do something a little bit different, they broke into a rendition of Van Morrison’s “Brown Eyed Girl”. Yes, the “making love in the green grass” one. Continue Reading…

Leading Worship Alone

One of my least favorite things in the world is leading worship alone. It can feel extremely intimidating. It might be because I don’t consider myself a particularly wonderful vocalist, and I like having the band help drown me out. But I have had enjoyable experiences leading worship alone.

In fact, leading a solo worship set can actually be a freeing experience if you embrace it. Instead of focusing on leading the band, you can direct all your attention to those in the congregation. You can see where they are and say things when necessary.

Here are five things to consider when leading worship alone that will help you create an engaging worship experience. Continue Reading…

How to Write a Worship Song

There are so many different styles of worship music out there. Consequently, there are many different things people look for in a worship song. There’s no formula for writing a great worship song.

However, there are a few things that are important to remember when writing a worship song. There are a few things that will make sure your song is good for congregational singing and inclusion in a worship service.

As you’re writing, keep these criteria in mind. Continue Reading…

Should Worship Leaders Use Capos?

There was a time I used to be obsessed with capos. I remember playing whole worship sets with at least two capos in use on my guitar. Cut capo, regular capo, and a spare just in case. My band used to make fun of me to no end. They told me real musicians learned how to play real chords.

Of course, I made the case that I liked the texture of the chords I could play with capos. That was partially true. But I also enjoyed the liberty of not having to think that much while I led worship. And that’s the case I make for using capos in worship (or using the ‘transpose’ button if you lead from keyboard).

Why I Use a Capo in Worship Leading

You see; I’m not a guitar player when I stand in front of a congregation. I’m not even really a singer. I’m a worship leader. Now, I use guitar and singing as a tool. But those tools shouldn’t take all my attention where I can’t focus on leading the congregation.

When it came to playing a song in Bb, I could either (1) focus on playing bar chords or (2) detune or use a capo. The first option made me focus on my guitar playing. The second option made playing my guitar easy, so I could focus on leading.

Great musicians often play below their skill level in concerts, because it allows them to focus on the crowd. It makes the song sound effortless. Capos allow me to play below my skill level.

Should You Use a Capo?

Not necessarily. You should use whatever tools you have that make your worship sets sound effortless. You should use anything you can that helps you focus on leading the congregation. If you’re trying to impress your congregation with your guitar skills, you probably aren’t focusing on leading them.

I encourage you to make your musicianship effortless, so you can devote your energy to leading.

You’re a worship leader first. Musician second.


What do you think? Do you use capos or transpose features? What’s your rationale?

How to Teach Your Band a New Song

Introducing new songs in your worship set are the perfect way to keep your Sunday morning worship fresh and exciting. But sometimes teaching your band a new song can be a stressful and less-than-successful task. So how do you teach your band a new song in an efficient and effective way?

While each church and leadership style might have different needs when it comes to this, there are a few things that an really make the whole process much simpler. So here are three steps that will make it easier to teach your worship team a new song. Continue Reading…

6 Worship Ideas

Week after week, churches gather to sing songs and listen to the word preached. Because it’s something we do every week, our church services can very easily lose their effect on our hearts. We can start just going through the motions and not allow the worship to move us. That’s why we put together this list of six worship ideas that can help you bring a special moment into your service.

It’s important you don’t go with one of these worship ideas just because you’re bored with your service. Be intentional. Look for a way that one of these worship ideas will compliment your service—not hijack it.

1. Put Scripture verses at the bottom of your lyric slides.

Sometimes the songs we sing during our worship service can get confusing. For instance, the lyrics to “Oceans” can be a bit confusing if you don’t understand it in context of Jesus calling Peter to walk on the water with him:

You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep, my faith will stand

Why not reference the passage on the lyric slide so people can understand the context? It can add new meaning to the song for those who aren’t familiar with the song.

2. Candlelit worship.

This is one of those worship ideas that doesn’t have to be reserved exclusively for Christmas eve services. When it makes sense in the context of your service, use candles as a chance to demonstrate us spreading our light to others. Either use candles on the stage, or let the light slowly spread with handheld candles.

3. Environmental projection.

Environmental projection is simply pointing a projector on a wall and letting the image fill the whole span of architecture. While it takes a bit of technical know-how and setup, it can be a cool way to create an immersive experience. It’s no longer an image on a screen, you become part of the image. Many churches are using this worship idea on a weekly basis, but why not just try it for one special service?

4. Build a stage design from the congregation’s perspective.

What if you had the congregation “build” a stage design during the worship service. A church in Kentucky did that. It became one of those worship ideas that was massively memorable because it made the congregation feel part of the service.

5. Give the congregation a part in the musical worship.

Uncover the Color creates worship experience elements for churches and special events. One thing they did was to give each member of the congregation a tuned chime. Then they allowed the congregation to take part in the musical experience. Definitely one of the coolest worship ideas I’ve ever seen!

6. Bring in different instruments than normal.

If you normally work with a rock and roll set, why not bring in some classical instruments? You could bring in a Hammered Dulcimer or some large drums. If you’re wanting a celebratory service, why not bring in some trash cans and let your percussionists go crazy? Different instruments and different types of music affect people differently. Why not see how you can shake things up a bit and create a unique emotional texture during your services?

So those are our worship ideas. Got any of your own? What unique things have you done at your church to make the worship moment special? Share your worship idea in a comment below.

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