Friends, strangers, people of the world. We need your vote!
Before voting below, a bit of background:
When leading worship, connecting to God is just really, really hard.
It’s hard enough being in the congregation to truly feel like I’m worshiping the Lord; but it’s even harder when playing. However, in both those settings (leading and not leading) I find it often takes at least two songs before my brain calms down enough to feel a connection with the Lord. To ignore the distractions, to calm my spirit, to stop thinking about work, to stop wondering about what’s for lunch,to really get into my instrument…it just takes some time for me.
So, I’m proposing more worship music. Now, before you gasp thinking “Church is going to be longer?” hear me out.
Right now, our service is about 75 minutes. Making the service longer isn’t really an option, and yet we don’t want to remove any parts of the service as each part is carefully planned and very meaningful. So, what about this:
Start an optional musical worship time around 9:15 or 9:20. We’ll sing 2-3 songs before church officially begins in which those people who desire more worship will have the opportunity to come early and worship. It will be no pressure, nothing required, just space for those of us who need more than two songs in a row to engage, to do just that.
There are a few possible down sides (and my rebuttals):
- Newcomers might feel late: If we tell the greeters to reassure people it’s just optional worship and they’re not late, that would help. Also, if on the projector screen 2/3 of the screen has the lyrics while 1/3 of the screen has a countdown to 9:30 (or a clock) with the words “Welcome to Restoration!” that could be another way to reassure people they’re not late.
- Pre-service time is designed for meditation, music will be distracting: Right now, most of us are hanging out and talking right up until service anyway (which is probably a good thing for the newcomers), so I wonder if playing and singing worship together might actually be less distracting for those who want to meditate. And, it might allow those who desire fellowship to do so more freely without feeling that they’re distracting those who are silent.
I’ve been to churches that do this (I think I have anyway) and I always liked it.
So, here are the next steps:
Vote! Tell us what you think by voting. And, if you’ve seen this work well, or fail miserably, let us know by commenting.