In 1996, I began my journey as a worship leader, minister of music, or whatever title you want to give it. I had no plans to stay in it as long as I did, but I learned quickly that it was a war zone. Some people just hate music, but most people choose their style of worship music based on one of these things:
- Nostalgia – They like music that brings back good memories. Whether those memories are from the front porch while granny had dip in her mouth while shooting squirrels and singing her favorite songs while she spit in a Pepsi bottle, people will often exalt certain church music because of the memories. They like what they know and won’t try anything new.
- Style – As long as they like the beat, it doesn’t matter what it says to this crowd. Their favorite style might be southern gospel, alternative, rap, or black gospel. The lyrics can totally contradict the Bible as long as it makes them feel good.
- Message – Some can worship with any style, with or without nostalgia attached, because the lyrics of the music lift up Jesus and do not contradict biblical teaching. This is a great balanced place to be.
Worship wars would cease if worship became more about Jesus and less about the worshiper. It’s okay if your church doesn’t sing your favorite songs. You don’t have to leave or start a gossip group to overthrow the worship leader. It will be okay. Focus on Jesus, and everything else will align properly.