Today is the day after my first Sunday at Level Grove. We had a wonderful time and the folks were very gracious. Now I find myself sitting in the office seeking the Lord’s leadership in planning the worship services for the remaining Sundays in July and into August. Fifty years ago my role was to simply “fill in the blanks.” Today, however, as I have grown in my understanding of my faith and ministry, it is a totally different thing. I certainly don’t criticize the way we did it back then. I may have not had the understanding of the focus and flow of a worship service, but I did love Jesus and my heart was to encourage others to love Him too. Yet, “in my old age,” I have learned there is so much more that can be done for services to be engaging and effective.
Taking the time to pray and seek what the Lord wants us to do when we gather is the key to it all. Studying the scripture focus of the service followed by considering the fast amount of music available, determining who is available to sing and play, and considering the crowd and the setting is vital. Leading people in worship is a serious and often an awesome responsibility that I take quite seriously. With the pressure to sing the “latest and greatest,” I never apologize for singing a great old hymn or gospel song that has a proven record of ministry.
Well, I’d better get back at it.