David Santistevan

17 Habits of Effective, Local Church Worship Leaders

Sometimes I’ll ask the guests on my podcast, “When you think of the word ‘successful’ who is the first person that comes to mind?”

Often, they are taken off guard and feel a little awkward. I love the question because successful means different things to different people. I become a better person when I learn about what other people value.

Most people define successful on a personal level: having this much money, possessing this much freedom, having this job, family, possession, status, etc. That is great. But when it comes to following Jesus, there are some additional markers we need to judge “successful” by.

We humans may have an opinion of what success looks like on this earth, but God’s definition of success is completely different. It’s a whole new world (cue Aladdin soundtrack). It’s a different value system. Today I’m not here to undermine personal, career, and financial goals. Those are important and often are reflective of a life that has its priorities in order.

But what does the Bible say about success? What is God’s opinion? And more specifically, what is the definition of success as a worship leader? I’m looking forward to the comments one this one, because the answers simply can’t be contained in a single blog post. There is simply too much depth to this answer.

What are the habits of highly effective worship leaders?

What do successful worship leaders do?

17 Worship Leader Habits (you should look into)

Let me get the conversation started.

Effective worship leaders:

1. See (and continue to see) the Glory of God – You become what you behold. You grow into what you consistently lay your eyes on. A good worship leader has history in God and continues to make history with God every single day.

2. Know the Depth of their Sin – A truly great worship leader isn’t very impressed with himself. He sees the darkness in his own heart and sees himself in light of the overwhelming glory of God. When you know who you are in and of yourself, there’s not much to be impressed by.

3. Know the Greatness of God’s Mercy – At the same time, a great worship leader knows the greatness of mercy. Deserving of wrath, the true and just sentence over our lives should be everlasting separation from God. But God…but God who is rich in mercy…This truth causes one to lead worship with a brokenhearted, humble joy.

4. Value “Serving” Over “Performance” – A true worship leader doesn’t waste time trying to impress people. They have a heart to serve people. Their preparation, practice, and programming are aimed to pastor people in their pursuit of God, not build their fanbase.

5. Are Influenced by the Needs of their Local Church – It’s one thing to be influenced by the songs, creativity, and artistic vision of the latest Bethel Music release. It’s another to know the stories of your congregation – to know what they are going through. Sure, you can’t know everyone’s story. But knowing a few will change the way you lead.

Continue reading.


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