Service in the Music Ministry through the years has taught me that an individual music department is much like a human body. A Music Ministry must be healthy in four different areas to function effectively in the church. Like our bodies we must feed these four areas to be healthy. A human body must have balance in the physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional areas to be balanced and healthy. In a Music Ministry there are similarities: physical (musicianship), mental (leadership), spiritual (discipleship), and emotional (fellowship). If any of these areas are out of balance there will be struggle and strife in your Music Ministry. There must be a holistic approach to building an effective Music Ministry.
In addition to musicianship, leadership, discipleship, and fellowship to assure effectiveness you must build a foundation/vision to keep your ministry fresh, alive, and working. An effective music ministry has four foundations that will keep it solid and functioning properly. The first foundation is Discipleship (Our commitment to Christ as a group), the next is Fellowship (our commitment to each other) the third area is Musicianship (our commitment to our musical craft) and finally Leadership (our commitment to making the right decisions to move our ministry to where God wants us to go.)
Most worship leaders and Ministers of Music deliver “ excellent presentations” sprinkled with scripture and prayer. The foundation and focus of an effective music ministry however, must be discipleship (spiritual).
Discipleship – What is it?
Discipleship speaks to how closely we walk with God. It’s a measure of how in tune we are with how the Holy Spirit moves in our lives. Are we listening to God? Are we following His will, are we seeking His will? I have observed through the years that music ministry members are very enthusiastic about singing on Sunday, tolerable about attending choir rehearsals, and totally absent from Bible study and Sunday school. Moreover, this attitude ties the hands of the pastor as any type of enforcement of a “Bible study required before you sing” rule would result in the dismantling of the choir. Basically they are afraid if they make attendance to Bible study mandatory that the choir membership will drop. If we continue to only be concerned with have a large attendance at rehearsal without a concern for building the spiritual maturity of our members we will continue to grow carnal, mean-spirited, hateful Christians in our music ministry.
There are three keys leadership must emphasize to establish a Discipleship Foundation in your music ministry.
- Participate in a consistent bible study.
- Pray without ceasing.
- Worship with your whole heart.
When you focus on these three areas you increase your ministry’s spiritual maturity and its overall effectiveness. Move your ministry forward!
Darryl Mason has served as Worship leader, Minister of music and Director of music in various ministries on the each coast. He and his wife Michelle live in Upper Marlboro, MD. He has 5 children and 7 grandchildren. His church is Westphalia United Methodist Church, Dr. Tim West, Pastor.