Five Actions to Prepare for Growth
By Jon Nicol
Last week we started talking about how to get more musicians and, specifically, two huge factors that affected that:
- the size of your church - the larger your church, the more potential musicians you'll have
- the quality of your church music - good musicianship attracts good musicians.
There are plenty of resources telling how you should take care of the first issue - growing your numbers, aka "church growth." If you can wade through the pond of shallow promises filled with magic bullets and quick fixes to find something that works for your church, great.
But as worship leaders and musicians, we're likely to be more effective growing a worship ministry if we focus on the second factor, good musicianship. There's a problem with this this concept that good musicianship attracts good musicians. It chases its own tail:
We need more (and better) musicians in order to attract more (and better) musicians. So to get more (and better) musicians, we'll need to find more (and better) musicians. So we need to find more (and better) musicians...
Let me first say this - this is not the ultimate key to landing more musicians. While it's a significant factor, ultimately God is the provider. He can work with or without these factors. But there always seems to be a pattern of preparation in scripture. And becoming a church with better musicianship is likely part of that pattern.*
I liken it to building a bigger bucket. Through God's strength and guidance, we build buckets. But it's up to God to fill those buckets.
If we all we build is a 5-gallon worship ministry bucket, then why would God fill it with 10 gallons of musicians? There is no way we could be good stewards of that.
So what are some ways to build a bigger bucket specifically in the area of musicianship? Here are five ideas, and I'd love to hear more:
1. Care and develop the ones you already have.
Why would anyone want to join a team who's leader doesn't invest in them. Again, it's a stewardship thing.
2. Create an administrative structure (bucket) that can handle more than you have right now.
There's more here than we can discuss today. But the structure it takes to manage a team of 10 will woefully fail when that teams grows to 20. So move to a structure that has room to grow.
3. Cast vision for growth.
Keep your team looking outward and upward. Too many times teams put out an "us four and no more" vibe that turns potential musicians away. Help them to think like stewards and not kings and queens of tiny fiefdoms.
4. Increase expectations for preparation.
This doesn't necessarily mean practice more and rehearse longer. Raise the quality of your musicianship through the right kind of practice and rehearsals. Grow in your understanding of team musicianship. Develop some arranging skills.
And try stuff that you might fail. The fear of failing can be fresh motivation for musicians stuck in status quo chord-pounding. (And remember, teach your team that failure is acceptable as long as you learn from it.)
5. Look at what some the "next-size" churches are doing.
Look at how their worship leaders lead. Study at their administrative and communication structures. Talk to their musicians about how they prepare.
And the "next-sized" thing is important. If you're a church of 250, don't spend time looking at churches of 2000. You might learn a few things, but their structures and practices will probably be too big a leap from where you're at.
Instead, look at churches that have passed the very next growth barrier that your church will face. As a church of 250, check out churches between 500 to 700 attendees. You won't be able to do a lot of what they do, but you can start to cherry-pick those methods and principles that will help you grow your bucket.
What this is not...
I want to be clear. This bigger bucket thing really isn't about some "build it and they will come" version of the prosperity gospel. We can do all this activity of building a bigger bucket, and still never see musicians come in.
It's really about opening up our hands even wider and asking God for more. More for His glory. More for His Kingdom. Anything else, and we're just building buckets in vain.
Question: So there's five suggestions to prepare for growth - what would you suggest?
Post graphic: Stock.xchng
November 19, 2012Tweet