Church is a place of love and support. It is a place where you can surround yourself with people that will help you put your shit back together. They will help you pick up the broken pieces of your life, and of your self, and help you put them back together. It is a place to build relationships, to get together with other broken people and grow together. Church is a dynamic environment where stagnation doesn’t belong. Where you can bare your soul, and you will be loved. Church is a place where you can find validation. This happens at Sunday morning services, at weekday small groups, and even during coffee with friends.
I think in order to fully immerse yourself in that love and support, and in order to provide that love and support, your ego has to be kept in check. Everyone needs validation, and everyone needs to be told they are important. Everyone needs a little recognition, some more than others, and everyone needs a place where they can feel safe. We are all broken, and we all need people around us to help us out.
More importantly, I don’t think that the worship team is a place for egos. As part of the worship team, we are leaders. We are just as broken as those in the congregation that we are leading, but I think we have to be careful what we bring to the stage. We need to ensure we are providing the best environment we can to bring people to worship God. This won’t happen if we are letting our egos run the show.
Over the past few weeks I have been overly interested in whether or not people can hear me when I’m on bass. First of all, the point of being the bass player isn’t to be heard. It is to be felt, and missed if not there. The bass (along with the drums), is the foundation of the music, and isn’t supposed to be hanging out in the front. I was looking for validation, but not in a way I should have been, or in the place I should have been. I shouldn’t be asking people if they can hear me during worship, they should be worshiping, not listening for the bass. I have been letting my ego get in the way of my worship.
The worship team isn’t a place for coddling or ego-boosting. It is a place for worshiping, and growing, both musically and spiritually. We need to provide an atmosphere in which people can worship, but we also need to provide an atmosphere in which we as leaders can worship. This cannot happen when we are scared about stepping on someone’s fragile self-confidence or over-inflated ego.
Everyone on the worship team is a musician, be it with our voices, a guitar, a bass, the piano, the organ or the drums.
I don’t really know what I am getting at. I love playing on worship teams, but I’m not very good at dealing with peoples egos. If I suck, tell me. If you have an idea that might improve my playing, or have a cool run for my bass part let me know. I just want to get better, always. I’ll never be good enough. And I just expect that same attitude from everyone; an openness to grow and change and to take constructive criticism. Be they singers or guitar players or drummers. I also expect patience. Everyone is learning and growing. Pushing the limits is the best way to grow, but it also needs to be controlled.
This is less a problem that I have with worship teams, and church in general, and more a problem I have with humanity. It is an ideal that I strive for, and I forget that not everyone strives for the same ideals as me. (which is probably a good thing) Not everyone wants to put in the effort to improve themselves and those around them. Some people find it easier to settle into a holding pattern that they know works, and are content to sit there.
I am not that person. Well, I try not to be anyway.