“From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” -Luke 12:48b
I taught a Music Ministry workshop over the weekend and anytime I have the opportunity to do that, I’m always thankful and humbled by the experience. As much as I can, I try to observe those that I am teaching to see what kind of response I’m receiving not necessarily to me, but to the subject matter. The general thing that I come across when I teach is how music ministries are trying to overachieve without either a solid foundation or a foundation period. For example, while most choirs want to sound just like their favorite song on the radio, so many considerations are not taken into account as to why a song is NOT ministered. Considerations like:
1. Relevance to the worship service
2. Overall capabilities of the singers and musicians
3. How long that song will take to learn (because sometimes one rehearsal is just not enough)
…so on and so forth…
Unfortunately, the “song NOT being ministered” part is the only fixation that a choir member may have which can lead to division and strife. While that is unfortunate, this gets moreso to foundational issues as opposed to ability. In order to be “excellent” at anything, you must have a mindset for “excellence”. In my lifetime, I have never seen where an apple seed will produce an orange OR where a mother dog will give birth to a kitten. The Bible says in Genesis 1:11 that “fruit will produce after its own kind” (paraphrasing). If we apply that meaning here, then we can ultimately say that “excellence” produces “excellence” because excellence will produce after its own kind.
Is that to say that your Sunday morning church choir can’t sing what’s on the radio like the people sing it on the radio do?
NO! It can be done, it has been done, and it will be done, BUT that is conditional on the type of foundation that your music ministry is built on. For example, to sing a song above the difficulty level of the overall choir, the foundation needs to be solid. To know if your overall foundation is solid, ask yourself these questions:
1. Do all choir members show up on time for rehearsal? (and YES “choir members” includes leaders, singers, and musicians)
2. Do choir members practice their music on their own time? (because there is a difference between “practice” and “rehearsal”)
3. Are choir members paying attention or being disruptive during rehearsal?
4. Do you trust your ministry leaders to lead you, teach you, and lovingly correct you?
5. Do you take the ministry seriously? (because you’re part of the foundation too)
We’re always looking for God to do the miraculous (which is something that He’s more than able to do), but I submit to you this question:
“What if God is basing His miraculous on our minimum?”