In Part One of this post, we discussed:
What is the Vision?
Initial Set List
Prepping for Rehearsal
Band and Vocal Rehearsal
We’re going to move on from there and talk about some of the other things I get to do on a weekly basis.
Final Set List
Usually by the time rehearsal is done on Wednesdays, we have a finalized set list. Occasionally, it changes Sunday mornings, but that’s not the norm. Personally, I spend a lot of time with the set list each week. I have a 30 minute commute each way, which is a great blessing when it comes to having time to absorb and meditate on the music and on Jesus. As I listen to the set list each day (multiple times per day), I think about how we are going to use these songs to really engage with people in our church. One major goal of our worship experiences is audience participation. I thrive on hearing the congregation sing the songs back.
Typically, on Thursdays I spend some time on our IMac refining the lyrics to the songs in ProPresenter so that the congregation can follow along on song that they are unfamiliar with. One new thing I had a opportunity to do for our last Night of Worship (Feb 12) was to add scripture to the beginnings and ends of songs. Like I’ve said previously, all of the songs we do go through a lot of scrutiny. We always want to ensure that our songs are shaped by sound theology and that our songs do not influence our theology in a negative way by teaching us something that is Biblically incorrect. Music/lyrics have the power to change culture, and that power MUST be used to make the truth of Jesus known and not to promote our own agenda.
Usually on media prep days, I spend a good bit of time coordinating with David Emery, our tech director. He is the one who makes many of the cool promos you guys see on Sunday mornings. He also oversees everything in the background on Sunday mornings. When things happen flawlessly and you don’t notice David, it’s because David is good at his job.
It’s very easy to get caught up in the stuff. The work of making Sunday mornings happen is great fun, but we cannot afford to lose focus on what we are doing it all for. We can have every detail finely tuned, but if we haven’t prepared ourselves spiritually for the battle we are going to face on Sundays, we have prepared for nothing. There have been Sundays where we’re singing songs of adoration, praise, and worship when I’ve felt excitement and anticipation of what God is doing. And then there are Sundays when I walk into the building and know that we’re in for the fight of our lives. It’s easy to forget that we do have an enemy who is ultimately fighting as hard as we are for the souls of men and women. Prayer is important. Understanding the Word is important, because the Word tells us Who our God is…that He wins! We must abide in Christ so that it is Christ who is seen on Sundays.
On Sunday mornings, the band gets to church at about 7:30 ready to rehearse. We run through the songs a few times, until we feel comfortable with the sound and with the music itself. It’s amazing what we forget from Wednesday nights until Sunday…haha. We get a 10 minute break usually at about 8:50am, and at 9:00am, we do a complete run-through, where we rehearse lighting (which hopefully we will be able to improve at some point), 1st set, announcements, 2nd set and closing song. We try to be done by 9:30am so that we can be a part of our church. I’ve been to churches before where the band lived in the green room. We don’t have a green room, and we will not have one in which the band will hang out/hide out from our congregation. It is absolutely vital that the people in our band are approachable and not haughty. And I’m thankful that they do a great job with this! We do meet in my office or Marilyn’s nook for a few minutes prior to service to pray together, but other than that we try to be a part of our church!
Well, that brings things full-circle. I’m sure there are many things that I forgot to mention, but this is it in a nutshell. Hopefully, with this 2 part post, you’ve been able to see the heart of our ministry. We do not exist for ourselves but for others. We want to make Jesus known!