I doubt that anyone reading this has this problem: You have too many musicians signing up to give their time and talents to the Lord.
Maybe I’m wrong, and you have gifted singers and instrumentalists knocking down your door. But I sure don’t. Finding and retaining worship team members has been an ongoing struggle ever since I got into leading worship. This can sometimes lead to us looking at someone’s talent and neglecting to evaluate them spiritually. And then we end up with people on the platform who just aren’t ready for that.
We Are Worship has published a three part article by Lex Buckley on the topic of recruiting new musicians. Lex writes:
Many musicians move to a new church enthusiastic about getting involved in the worship team, and they are likely to approach you as the worship pastor and let you know they are interested in joining. It can be tempting to let them start playing up front straight away, particularly if they are a great musician or if you really need that instrument in your band. Even so, it is my advice that you let them be part of the church for four to six months before they get involved. This is something that my husband and I have found to be wise, and it’s a boundary that we put in place for four reasons.
The second part of Lex’s article lists five important questions to ask about your worship team recruits, including:
Are they servants?
Using our gifts to worship God and serve the church is an incredible privilege. Being part of a band means remembering that you are there to give and to serve. So although it is often someone’s dream and passion to be on the worship team, they still need to remember that they are involved firstly to serve – it’s not about them.
Finally, Lex concludes with some information about auditions and trial periods:
One option is to use the traditional auditioning process, where a potential new recruit will play or sing on their own in front of their worship pastor, and their musical ability will be assessed in that environment. For many, this has proven to be really effective. Another option is to hear the musicians play in a group setting. This is what we have chosen at our church, and we call it the Worship Jam.
If you’re a worship leader, it’s your job to looking for new worship team members. Lex’s three part post has some great information on how to bring new people onto the team.