The Merriam-Webster defines intentional or intentionality as something done with intention or on purpose. How often do we do things purposefully? When we act with intentionality towards someone or something we are giving them or it perceived worth in our eyes. That’s huge. To whom or what do you give worth?
Here are a few things within our ministries that we as worship leaders should approach with intentionality and allow God to in turn use for His glory:
Your Personal Relationship with Christ
This may seem like a given, but it is far too easy to get in the flow or into a routine and to become a full-time worship leader and a part-time follower of Christ. We as human beings are very good at faking things by becoming “excellent” at what we do without even thinking about why we do it. We all have the church or spiritual mask that we can put on to make people believe we have it all together even if we don’t. Sometimes I myself can be so “task-driven” or goal oriented that I forget to be intentional with Christ. Improving our ministries and getting things done isn’t a bad thing in and of itself, but if we do those things while sacrificing personal devotion then what are we really working for? I lead worship a lot… but I hope that I can be a personal worshipper of Christ even more. Let’s decide right now to never become more focused on the things that we do and how we do them than the REASON behind what we do. Take time to spend with Jesus… your congregations will thank you.
Communication is key! Be intentional to communicate among your leadership and your ministry. I have found that the leadership in any church loves to take time in order to find out what is happening within the body. Fill them in! We don’t have to do this alone.
This also can have another side to it. As worship pastors we are really good at spending time to create structures and worship services and then keeping our reasoning to ourselves! Let people know why you choose the songs you do and place them at certain parts of a service. Some people are better at putting the pieces together than others and I personally am very poor at providing them with all the pieces on a weekly basis.
Think back to the last time someone or something had a problem that they approached you with right before rehearsal or a service… if it wasn’t sometime in this last week I am thoroughly surprised. It would be hard for an outsider to understand the amount of stress and last minute emergencies that we as worship leaders deal with on a weekly basis. I have just come to accept them as a part of leading within a body of believers. I also know, from personal experience, how easy it is to stay busy and yet get nothing done. Our time as ministers is limited and often times we are stretched in every direction, but in order to serve our congregations with Godly excellence we must work to be intentional with our time. It’s far too easy to get overwhelmed by all the last minute things that come up, but if we are careful about scheduling in advance and thinking ahead not only will we get more done, but we will free up more time to be intentional in other areas that are on this list. We should strive to never treat our ministries like a list of tasks or jobs that we have to get done every week, and one way to do that effectively is to have a schedule!
Jesus was intentional about building relationships with His followers. We should follow that example in order to disciple and mentor those around us. As “Worship Pastors” we need to be acting like a pastor, and that requires more than just singing or playing an instrument. Being intentional within a relationship is essential in establishing influence and developing those around us into productive disciples who can, in return, spend their lives mentoring others. Jesus walked, talked, and ate alongside His disciples. They experienced life together. It was in that way that they were able to be ministered to.
Chip Bell says, “Effective mentors are like friends in that their goal is to create a safe context for growth. They are also like family in that their focus is to offer unconditional, faithful acceptance.” There can be no discipleship without relationship… and relationships are intentional.