So, you want to be a worship pastor? Here are a few "must-haves" to succeed in the worship ministry:
1. A love for Jesus
This is placed at #1 for a reason. Worship should be done out of a place of love for Christ-not a love for music, or performing. We worship because Jesus is worthy of our worship. It's important to remember, and to help others remember, that we don't earn our salvation by worshiping Jesus. We can't earn our salvation by doing anything. We worship as a response to the gift of salvation that has been freely given to us.
2. A love for the church
Worship ministry is not meant to be something you do until you "make it" in the music business. A heart to see God's church flourish is necessary in worship ministry. A love for God's church should impact our decisions as worship pastors. What songs do we, as a church, need to sing right now? What truth do we need to declare over God's people this weekend? As a worship pastor, you're prophesying God's truth into the hearts and lives of your people in every worship service, with every song. Allow God to develop in you a love for his people-his bride (Ephesians 5), and watch your anointing and leadership potential increase.
3. Communication skills
Worship pastoring is about leading-leading people in expression of praise to God, and also leading your fellow team members. As a leader of people, the clearer that you can communicate your vision, the better. Can you communicate the vision for your church in a clear manner? What about the vision for your worship ministry? What is it that you're trying to do?
4. Thick skin
Worship, and the expression of worship is very subjective. The music and songs that really usher YOU in to the presence of God might sound and feel totally different from another person's preferred worship style. Worship and music is very personal, and often times, people voice their approval (and disapproval) directly to the worship pastor. I love the quote from Pastor Rick Warren that says, "If you live by people's approval, you die by their dissaproval." It's truly a skill to be able to receive a negative comment and, instead of taking it personally, turn back to the vision of why you're doing what you're doing in the first place. 1 Corinthians 7:23 says, "You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of human beings."
5. A good team
You aren't meant to be a one-man show. The very nature of worship ministry is that it is meant to be done in the context of community. Isolation can lead to self-centered thinking. Invite others into your process. Become a mentor. Seek someone to mentor you. Believe it or not, you don't have all the skills you need to succeed by yourself. Seeking out people to join your team is crucial to your own mental health, and to the success of your worship ministry. Other people can see things that you can't see. We're better together.
Being a worship pastor is a high calling. It's a great responsibility. Ask Jesus to give you a heart to love Him and His church. Work on your communication skills. Learn how to handle both praise and criticism, and gather people around you that can help you push your God-given vision forward.