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Do Worship Leaders Impact The Weather?

Written by Nathan Gifford on Thursday, 06 February 2014. Posted in Blogs

Do Worship Leaders Impact The Weather?

I was born and raised in central Indiana, and while I've spent some of my adult years in other states, I ended up back in Indiana again. "Back Home Again In Indiana" is very applicable to me. If you are remotely connected to the news this winter, you know that Indiana and this area of the country has been in the middle of a pretty rough winter... with record low temperatures and heavy snowfall. This afternoon, while shoveling the snow-covered driveway... again... I had this thought.

I began to think about a worship leader friend of mine that just recently left the warmth of Texas to take a new ministry position up here in my area of the country. Shortly after arriving, he and his family experienced a rude winter welcome. Here in Indiana, it's been said that the month of January that we just finished was the worst January for weather that we've seen in 100 years. Wow! I certainly can't argue with that. Now, back to my friend...

I began to feel sorry for my fellow worship leader, thinking of him having to be out shoveling all the time like I was doing... and probably questioning the recent move to some degree (no pun intended). I quickly thought back to a very similar experience that my family had.

About 10 years ago, we left Indiana to take on a new ministry position in sunny Miami, Florida! That sounds great and all... until hurricane season came. That year was the most active hurricane season that Miami had seen in about 20 years! It was crazy... one tropical storm or hurricane after another. Everyone in the area couldn't believe how active the storm season was that year. I actually had a family member in Florida who blamed me for the increase in hurricanes (not seriously of course)... saying all of their years living there, it had never been so active.

Thinking back to that time, I know there were moments where I second-guessed my decision to move into such an unstable environment. Of course, God had sent us there for a reason... just like He has sent my friend into this cold, snowy region for a reason. The funny question hit my mind though as I thought about our two similar experiences... do worship leaders impact the weather? Did we somehow cause these extreme weather shifts by moving into the area?

I laughed to myself for a moment, thinking how crazy that would be that myself or my friend could move our families into a new area of the country and that act of relocation would throw the area weather patterns all out of sync. Then God took my silly thought and reminded me of a very important fact - that we DO have an impact on the weather!

Now, we of course have no control over the snow, rain, wind, etc... we leave that to God. However, the ministry through praise and worship that we are leading has a HUGE impact on the atmosphere of our church services! The time of praise and worship in your church service is not just a time-filler at the beginning of a service... it's not just something that you do because it's on the schedule. It is a powerful time of entering into the very throne room of God with hearts of thanksgiving and praise, and corporately encountering His presence! He inhabits the praises of His people... and His presence WILL change the atmosphere and set the stage for the rest of the service!

We as worship leaders play a big role in this. Not just the lead vocalist who carries the title of "worship leader", but every member of the band, vocal team, sound engineers, etc... each one is working together to lead your congregation in worship. We must do this by example. We must come ready to give our very best to our God... whole-hearted worship... holding nothing back. We pray, prepare, practice, play, sing... doing everything we can and need to so that time of worship in the service is effective in accomplishing the purpose that it is there for.

Each of us that steps onto the platform in our church is a leader... either a good one or a bad one. Like it or not. As our pastor regularly reminds us, the congregation is a reflection of the platform. What we do affects those we are leading. If we are truly worshiping, the congregation will follow and go with us. If we look like we're bored, irritated, dead, etc as we play our instrument or sing, that will have an affect also... but not a good one.

We have an impact on the weather, the atmosphere in our church. We can't force anything to happen or force our congregations to participate in a certain way, but we can do our parts to be ready... so when Sunday comes, it's game time. We're going somewhere and we're taking a church body with us!

What kind of impact will you have on the atmosphere in your church this week?

 

About the Author

Nathan Gifford

Nathan Gifford

Nathan has been a worship leader for 20 years, serving in multiple churches from a new church plant to a large urban congregation... serving mostly in the state of Indiana. He grew up as a PK in Indiana and was actively involved in worship music from the age of 12. Over the years Nathan was involved as a saxophonist in his church band and also played in many other groups and events. While in college at the Indiana University School of Music, Nathan began moving into worship leading. Then after graduating, he went right into full-time ministry as a music pastor. He began writing new worship songs that have continued to be a part of his ministry as well as many churches across the country. Nathan has recorded 9 projects, which are mostly live worship projects. He is currently an active part of the music ministry at Citipointe Church in Loveland, CO.

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