One thing that I learned during my time at Willow Creek was the importance of transitions. It’s very easy to get so focused on the content – the various bits and pieces – of what we’re doing on any given weekend that we neglect look at how they all fit together. You can have a great song, or moving video, or some other very profound service element – and an awkward transition can drain the impact from the moment, sometimes completely.
We make sure that we do two complete runthoughs each weekend (actually three, since we do an abbreviated one on Sunday morning, as well). The first one has every single service event, in order, with every single element, including announcements. The only thing that we don’t do as part of that is the message. In addition, we run through all of the lighting, where everyone is staring, the lyrics and Scripture verses, etc… each Thursday at 1:30pm.
This takes planning. I do think that our worship leaders have to have a certain amount of freedom to react to the moment. However, I also know that sometimes freedom can be an excuse for laziness. The people of our churches that God has entrusted us to serve deserve the best we can bring, and like anything else in life, planning, practice and preparation help us to be able to bring our very best!
Published by creativeworshipideas
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I'm a Christian, a husband, a dad, a son, a pastor, a consultant, a musician, a writer, and bits and pieces of a bunch of other things. My work life has followed three main phases - business to teaching to church. I was the Weekend Services Pastor for nine years at Northview Church, an awesome church in the Indianapolis suburbs. I used to work for Willow Creek, another awesome church in the Chicago area. Plus I've written for various magazines and websites, and other freelancy sorts of things... My life mission is to help the church be as excellent as it can be.
Oh yeah - the name's Greg. Greg Wallace. But not the race car driver or the major league pitcher or the British celebrity chef. Just the creative worship guy. Hi.
It's my hope that these ideas, musings, rants, raves, etc... will inspire you. They're just my opinions - but again, I hope that they'll help to inspire you. Because the church really, really needs inspired creative types. If you're a creative type (and most people are, deep-down), ask God for help. Then take any ideas that are useful to you - borrow them, nab them, use them, adapt them - and make them into something greater...
You can head over to my Instagram site for an abundance of shorter posts: creativeworshipideas. If you're looking for consulting - especially on weekend services, team leadership or multi-site strategies - I'd love to help. Just message me here, and I'll be in touch - Greg
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