Awkward Turtle Goes to Church
I've been leading worship at my church on a semi-regular basis; earlier this summer I spent a week tucked into the hills of Kentucky, at Bethel Camp. While I've been playing guitar for worship teams for a several years now, leading worship has been quite different, both a source of blessing and neurosis. There is this sense in which I feel the weight of leading the people of God to say the same thing; it can be a bit overwhelming. When I sing something like, "Show me how to love, like you've loved me. Break my heart for what breaks yours." my mind brings to light all the deficiencies I see in myself and the people singing along with me, then feel the desperation of the congregation push through me. I'm really not much of a feeler most of the time, but it seems like every time I lead there is a line or two that squeezes us all together into a tasty church sausage. That is a beautiful thing.
Of course it doesn't all feel this fluid. What time is it. Good, enough time for the last couple songs. Man I'm hungry; what's for lunch. Don't flat that note again. Should I bring it down here, maybe pray or something, no you just want to use prayer as an opportunity to transition to the next song smoothly, although is that all that bad, your putting together a liturgy right, plus you could use that time to tune. Maybe next time you should just use written prayers. Does God even want us to meet like this once a week? Yes I have theological debates mid-song.
I realize most of my neurosis is self-inflicted, but there is a consumer mindset in Christianity that puts a pressure on people to get things right and make something happen. As a worship leader, no one ever said I have to pray out loud, but what if I hardly ever did, or only read written prayers? My insecurity tells me that people would find that strange.
I'm going to leave it hanging here, at least until Friday.