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Author: Becky Ykema

Developing More than the Musician

So much of being a leader is about calling the best out of the people with whom we work or serve. As ministry leaders, we have the responsibility to encourage the best out of our people. This includes helping them grow deeper in their spiritual walk with Christ. It goes without saying that we want our musicians to continually grow, learn, and try new sounds or beats in order to have more tools in their toolbox. But sometimes we forget that—more important than a great sounding guitar player—it’s important to have a guitar player who is growing spiritually and...

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Dealing with Irresponsibility

Question… how do you deal with a brilliant but irresponsible musician? The absurdity! Musicians are always on time, always responsible. They’re never forgetful and never indulge in the tempting things of life. Never. Right? Well… Often with brilliant artistry comes weakness in other areas. It might be time management, might be pride or ego, or might be addiction of some sort. The most important thing to remember is that nothing trumps the health of the person. In some instances it might require a break from the team. In other instances it might just require a moment of failure that...

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The Nature of a Worshiper

What is the nature of a worshiper? Among many things, a worshiper is— … someone with a broken and contrite heart. (Psalm 51:17) … thankful and worships with reverence and awe. (Hebrews 12:28) … someone who prays and seeks after God. (1 Chronicles, 22:19, Psalm 9:10) … someone who reveres God.  (Psalm 5:7) … able to outwardly express praise. (Exodus 15:21, 2 Chronicles 5:13, Ephesians 5:19) But let’s take the microscope out and look a little deeper into our own context. What is the nature of the worshipers in your congregation? This is a culture conversation. Answering this question...

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Turning Up Your Volume

Humor me for a moment. Think about a baby chick. God designed it so that, within the confines of a shell, a tiny little speck grows miraculously into a baby chick. It’s protected from harm’s way. For roughly 21 days it’s kept safe and warm allowing it the space to grow into a tiny version of what it will someday be – a clucking chicken. But the baby chick needs to break out of its shell at a certain point. It needs to stretch its muscles, tap its beak, and stomp its feet until the walls begin to crack...

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The Secret Power of Words

A few months ago I sat down with one of our pastors to ask how I can be a better worship leader. I wanted to know in what areas I needed to grow. Our conversation was great. But at one point he began sharing how he tends to see weakness in worship leaders in a very specific area. “Worship leaders have it easy,” he said, “most of their words are already written for them through song lyrics and Scripture.” Our conversation continued around the importance of the words we speak as ministry leaders. He had a point, and it...

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The Dream Worship Leader

Oh, to have a magic teakettle! When you rub the side of it, instantly your dream worship leader appears – ready to serve at your church. Oh, to make ourselves into the dream worship leader that churches are looking for! If you could define what makes a dream worship leader, what would they be like? In a perfect world, my answer is, “A dream worship leader has all the good and Godly characteristics possible. They never sin. They never mess up. They are all good things to everyone.” But the more I think about it, this is laughable. Why?...

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Men, Women, and Distractions in Worship

What’s a distraction in worship? There are a lot of different ways to answer that. But for this little article, I’m going to touch on distractions for guys and gals. In most worship settings, we get the opportunity to create space for both men and women to pray, sing, and engage with God. It’s an amazing thing that we are both made in the image of God and we both bring out unique aspects of God’s image – also known as Imago Dei. God made us both and God called us good. So what does this mean for worship...

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Teaching Your Band Simplicity

Every weekend people gather in churches and ministry centers to participate in singing songs of worship to God. For those of us who are worship leaders, we have the immense joy in choosing those songs. Now there are many different cultural backgrounds as well as schools of thought in the choices of music we play. All of it has value. However, I would like to offer some thoughts in encouraging us to playing simpler music. Music of great complexity can be stunningly beautiful, drawing us near to the heart of God.  It can be a symphony to our ears...

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