Share the Platform – 10 Years Series

This is the second post in my blog series entitled, “10 Lessons From 10 Years of Worship Ministry.” If you didn’t catch the last post, you might want to check it out as it sets the stage for this one. Without further ado, let’s dive in.

2. Share the platform.

My buddy Rob is a long-time student pastor. Early in his ministry, he was interested in preaching. As he approached his pastor about it, he was told, “This is my pulpit, Rob.” This is my pulpit? While this is an incredibly arrogant thing to say, there are times that I non-verbally say the same thing. Let me explain.

Leading worship 50 out of 52 Sundays a year is tough. It’s exhausting, right? Standing in front of God’s people prepared to lead them week in and week out, in season and out of season is difficult. What’s more difficult is leading worship 40 out of 52 Sundays. It’s difficult because it means you have to share. It’s difficult because it means you don’t get applauded. It’s difficult because it means you must develop others.

The first five-ish years in ministry I felt so inadequate as a worship leader that most of my brainpower and energy was spent on self-development. While it’s healthy for leaders to constantly get better, I wanted to get better partially for the applause of man that came with it. That was toxic, not healthy. I expected my church to make disciples while I didn’t. I was just like the parent who says to their children, “Do as I say, not as I do.”

“But God gives more grace” (James 4:6).

By God’s grace, I began to give leadership away. I now realize (most days) that I will never arrive as a musician, as a communicator, or as a theologian. Assuming that one must “arrive” before bringing someone else along is a lie that keeps us from making disciples. No one receives enough pre-marital counseling to really be ready for marriage, no married couple reads enough books to be ready for the task of parenting (can I get an “amen”?), and no worship leader leads worship enough to be ready to multiply themselves.

But God, in His kindness, is ready to extend grace that is sufficient for the tasks he calls us to. “God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8). The truth is, my inadequacy only makes the gospel shine brighter (2 Corinthians 12:10). I don’t have to arrive as the perfect worship leader, because there is only one perfect worship leader and he has “Lord of Lords” tattooed down his leg.

Worship leader, the church needs to see that there are many singers, but One Savior, a plurality of leaders, but only One Lord. Sharing the platform can start by giving away a song, a Scripture reading, or a whole service. God calls you to equip the saints for the work of ministry (Ephesians 4:11). What are you waiting for? Start small, but start somewhere. Share the platform.

Diagnostic Questions:

How many times did you lead worship in the last year? 

Who are you intentionally praying for, preparing, and giving leadership opportunities to? 

Reading Further:

I understand that some of you may have the incredible blessing of not only leading worship but being paid for the task of worship leading. Perhaps like me, you have had leadership above you or around you who have expressed concern that you would have others lead in your place. Rather than bowing to the pressure in a sense of false submission, why don’t you graciously explain your heart for developing others? Perhaps it would be best if you set goals with your pastor or supervisor for how many weekends others could co-lead with you or how many Sundays you could not even touch the microphone. Establishing a healthy worship culture and a culture of development won’t happen overnight, but praying and planning can start right now.