A worship pastor is often prone to thinking that the Church’s peak moments of worship - on this side of eternity - are found in the 15-20 minutes we sing on Sundays. I should know. But it’s not that we’re (all) self-absorbed. Maybe it’s due to the nature of corporate singing, how it reflects the activities of heaven. Or that we’re commanded to sing at least 121 times on the pages of Scripture, more than any other God-given mandate.

Or maybe it’s in the blood, sweat, and tears that go into making it happen just right. If you’ve never really thought about the preparation process for weekly worship, here are some of the basic elements, in no particular order:

  1. Careful, in-depth study of the text being preached

  2. Prayerful song selection, trying to ensure that each word sung is doctrinally sound

  3. Service content/flow meetings with the pastors and staff

  4. Creation, location, and dispersion of resources

  5. Extensive rehearsals with tech teams and musicians.

The worship pastor’s job within the gathering is obviously much more visible. With God-given skill, he pours all his heart, soul, and might into leading the congregation to glorify the Lord through song. Our worship pastor prepares well and leads us well. So be sure to thank God for Matt Mason today.

But as important as congregational singing is (see THIS for some great insight on its significance), I learned over nine years in that ministry that it’s also just one facet of worship. Within the corporate gathering alone, we worship through fellowship, prayer, meditation, reading of the Word, preaching of the Word, response, and the administration of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper...to name a few. So today, church, let’s sing whole-heartedly, but let’s not think that worship is over after the first 15-20 minutes. Let’s view each and every aspect as vital. And let’s participate with renewed joy and energy, especially as we submit ourselves to the preached Word.

It took leaving a ministry of Sunday song-singing for God to convince me that worship doesn’t end there. In fact, when we leave this place today, the call to true worship - to obedience from the heart to all of Christ’s commands - is just beginning. The ‘peak moments’ lie ahead this week as we daily present our bodies as living sacrifices to the Lord (Rom. 12:1-2).

What was lacking in my life was a desire to make an impact on the kingdom of darkness. But gospel proclamation fuels worship! So as we close our gathering by commissioning one another to make disciples of all nations, let’s do so with a zeal for the worship of Christ where He is not being worshipped today.



Josh Meredith serves often with our worship team. He and his wife, Rachel, lead an adult small group and work with urban ministry in Marks Village on Sunday afternoons. They have three children: Hayden, Hudson, and Hannah.