Worship Facilities is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Team development
In a world dominated by social media, the sin of comparison has never been more tempting. For instance, we find that after listening to Bethel’s latest release on Spotify, we feel the pressure to reproduce it as accurately as possible for our own church.

Team Development: Building Worship Teams in Small Town Churches

In my experience, small churches have poorly produced worship services, because they are aspiring to a level of production, which is unattainable with the resources available to them.

I live and lead worship in a quaint New England town of 15,000. Having grown up in northeast Philly, I can assure you, I indeed reside in a small town. When walking out of my house, I can’t seem to avoid running into someone I know.

It is only incumbent upon us to do the best we can with what we have.

My wife and I are always going to the same few restaurants, because they are the only ones to choose from. I was elated when a decent coffee shop finally opened downtown!

Small towns lack people, and with that, resources. You can see where I am going with this. Building teams in small churches that are in small towns is difficult, because we lack one key resource: people.

So how do we go about building teams for small churches in small towns?

Here are three suggestions:

Do Your Best With What You Have

In a world dominated by social media, the sin of comparison has never been more tempting. For instance, we find that after listening to Bethel’s latest release on Spotify, we feel the pressure to reproduce it as accurately as possible for our own church. Our friend from the big city posts a picture of her church’s new lighting rig to Instagram, which only reminds us of the sorry state of the dated lighting that is in our sanctuary … we can’t even dim our lights!

We who lead small-town churches are constantly being confronted with increasingly high production standards, which we cannot possibly attain. It is not incumbent upon us, though, to meet those standards.

It is only incumbent upon us to do the best we can with what we have.

Develop Your Production Around Your Resources

In my experience, small churches don’t have poorly produced worship services, because they lack resources. Small churches have poorly produced worship services, because they are aspiring to a level of production, which is unattainable with the resources available to them.

Musicianship is a problem for many small-town churches. But that’s OK! We can produce viable worship services with limited resources, as long as we limit our expectations to those resources, developing our production around our resources, rather than the other way around.

If you only have an acoustic guitar, a flute, and a Cajón, then Oceans, by Hillsong United, will never sound like the recording, no matter how hard you try. It will only sound empty and incomplete.

What if you start your arrangement by asking the question, though, what would Oceans sound like, if it was written for our three-piece? You might just come out with a beautiful arrangement that serves your congregation better, than the Hillsong version ever could.

Tailor your worship experiences around the church that you are, not the church that you wish to be.

Build Up the People Who Are Your Team

In small-town churches, we can make announcements week-after-week, stating among other things that we need a new drummer. Even though we hold open auditions every quarter, the likelihood that our team will expand, as a result of our efforts, is low. Anyone who works for a small-town church knows this frustration all too well, as team building rarely translates to team expansion.

But we can still build up our team by building into the people who make up our team.

Every team member should be on a trajectory of personal growth and development. As the team leader, it’s our responsibility to facilitate that trajectory. This trajectory should include the development of two main components, character and competency.

A team member with high character and low competency, is limited in the good they can do. She may be a positive spiritual presence on the stage, but her presence is going to be impeded, if she can’t carry a note while singing. 

On the other hand, a team member with low character and high competency is unlimited in the bad they can do. He may be able to shred on guitar, but that skill will be impeded if he’s an egomaniac who is only there to serve his solo.

Chances are our teams will be made up of members with varying degrees of character and competency. The challenge for us as leaders, is moving them to an overall higher degree.

Maybe you could arrange for the goodhearted lady with a pitchy voice to take some vocal lessons.

Maybe you could read through a book on service and humility with your guitar player.

Whatever the context may be, you build an awesome team by building into the team you already have.

Hide comments

Comments

  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
Publish