I Am a Choir Member

A few years ago, Thom Rainer put out an excellent book called I Am a Church Member. It’s a quick read that puts forward six characteristics found in mature church members, then spends a chapter discussing each of the six. I highly recommend the book, which can be purchased at lifeway.com. (I don’t get anything if you buy the book.)

That book title was the inspiration for this blog post. Of course, these concepts can also apply to praise band members, orchestra players, tech teams, and others who serve on worship teams. Most of these are thoughts I share with our team at church from time to time, but I’ve never compiled in this way. The second and third ones are great additions to my original list suggested by my friend John Brewer, a worship pastor in Oklahoma. Check it out, and share your own thoughts below.

I am a worshiper. Yes, choir is fun. Yes, I enjoy music. But above all, this is my opportunity to join my voice with others in worship of God Almighty. Nothing supersedes that.

I am a servant. My primary role is to serve the body of Christ through biblical worship leadership. This means I should pray for them regularly and lead in such a way that serves the congregation’s best interest before my own.

I am a soldier. When I praise, I join my brothers- and sisters-in-arms in spiritual warfare, equipping myself and the congregation to be better followers of Christ. We turn the attention of our minds and the affection of our hearts toward the King, that we might push back the enemy and bring glory to God.

I sing through.  Sometimes, I don’t feel at my best. Colds happen. And allergies. And even sore throats. But if it’s not enough to keep me awake from work, or a ballgame, or going out to dinner…it’s not enough to keep me out of rehearsal. Sure, I may have to listen more than I sing one week, but I’m there because it’s important for me to be there…if for no other reason than to be there for the people around me.

I check my ego at the door. Maybe I’ll get that solo. Maybe I won’t. Maybe the solo I had before will turn into a congregational line the next time we do the song…or maybe it will even be someone else’s solo. I won’t be bothered by those things. Because it’s not about me.

I am not a volunteer. Volunteers are, well, volunteering. I am serving in worship ministry because of the calling and gifting of God in my life.

I am the only me. When my family has a reunion, I don’t skip it because “enough people will be there.” If I’m on a sports team, I don’t lay out of a practice or a game because I know enough other players will show up to keep the team from forfeiting. I have a unique role that no one else can fill. When I am missing, I am irreplaceable.

I’m never a no-show. I inform leadership of my absences in advance. Can emergencies happen? Yes…but 95% of the time or more, I know if I’m going to be out. I make these dates known when I know about them…and the rest of the time, I’m here.

I’m not more important than my team members. That means I’m not late, because we can’t truly rehearse as a unit until everyone is there. That means I don’t think I can do without rehearsal or outside preparation because I’m good enough to get by without it. To lead well as a team, we must prepare as a team.

I help those on my team. Because someone helped me learn and grow to where I am today. Because when my teammate gets better, our team gets better…and so do I.

What are other marks of a choir member? Share your comments below.

11 Comments

  1. I am a cheerleader. When the coach of the team makes a great decision, I cheer like crazy…to encourage him. When the coach makes a mistake, I cheer like crazy…to encourage him. When I think I might have another way of doing things, I cheer like crazy…to encourage him. I’m the cheerleader, and he’s the coach. I’m the choir member, and he’s my director.

  2. I love it, Clay. It says pretty much how I feel about choir. I wish I could be there every Wednesday and Sunday but with my job that’s not possible. But when I am there, I’m always blessed by the Holy Spirit. Thank you for your leadership and dedication.

    1. Thanks, Ricky! I know that in some ways, it takes an extra level of commitment when work schedules conflict with rehearsal schedules. Thanks for being so devoted and so faithful! It’s an honor to get to serve with you.

  3. You’re killing me! We both hate that we can’t be there year round! Hopefully we make up for it in the months that we ARE there. At least we are responsible no shows!

    1. You guys are out for a season every year, and we know when and why and when you’ll be back. You are both so faithful and committed, and we miss you when you’re away… But we know you’ll be back! Looking forward to that time.

  4. I like your blog. I too participate to give praise to The Lord who saved me an undeserving sinner. I always want to be a person who encourages others!
    Sure we should work through being tired or feeling bad but I will not come with a cold, sore throat, or flu as it may infect others around me

  5. Opportunist. I got to thinking a few years ago about how many more times I would be able to sing with a choir. It humbled me and made me more grateful for the opportunity.
    Colossians 3:16 is a great memory verse. “Let the word of Christ dwell with you richly and in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

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