Perhaps you’ve thought that being a media team member simply requires the ability to select slides in a computer program so they might be displayed for the church. You might not have realized it, but being a part of the media team is helping to facilitate worship in ways you might not even have thought of. Usually what people notice most in a worship service is the worship leader, the quality of the sound, and the smoothness of the media presentation. In effect, these three positions make up a key leadership team and it is important they are on the same page.
Essentially as a media team member, you are leading worship from the computer. In other words, what you do with the technology and media presentation of the service adds to or takes away from a person’s ability to enter into worship and engage in the elements of the worship service. These next few best practice principles will help you to focus on the key things of leading worship as a media team member.
Remember You Are Here to Serve
As a member of the media team, you are very important. You are not, however, the most important part of the team. In fact, no one person is. Everyone shares in responsibility and effort in pulling off the service. If you have to defer, though, defer to the worship leader of the service as the key leader of the worship ministry. Further and beyond this, defer to your lead pastor of your church. It is their larger vision you are trying to outwork and your goal is to help make this happen to the best of your ability. Furthermore, take time to get to know your worship leader, sound man, and lead pastor. Let them know you are here to serve them and help them however you can. The more they know that you respect them and want the best for them and the team, the better your team will be. More importantly, it’s how God would have us approach all of our peers and leaders.
Matt 19:30 (NLT) But many who are the greatest now will be least important then, and those who seem least important now will be the greatest then.
Enhance Worship, Don’t Distract From It
It can be very easy to add elements to a service that you think may be cool but another person might find distracting. Talk with your key leadership team to find out what elements they feel would be appropriate for your church body and who you are trying to reach. In one culture, moving backgrounds might work great; in another, a simple black backdrop might work better. Find out what will help others engage in worship and then adhere to that. Remember, this isn’t for your entertainment or amusement, but for the benefit of helping others encounter God. At the same time, you should really enjoy it!
Develop Good Timing
Timing is a huge part of running media for a church. Although important in every element of a service, timeliness is especially critical for the worship team during the worship set. The worship leader, in particular, will be relying on you to get the lyrics up on the screen just at the right time. Many churches don’t have music in front of them as they lead. Therefore, they often rely on TV monitors or projected lyrics on the back wall of the church or on the stage for their next lyric cues. If the lyrics are late, this will really disrupt the flow of the worship for the team. Practice cueing up the lyrics for the next screen as soon as the last word is sung from the current slide. Your worship leaders (and congregation) will thank you!
Know the Songs
A big part of having good timing with the songs is actually knowing how the songs go. This is particularly important for instrumentals, intro, outros, and “dead space” in a song. We often encourage our media team to construct a slide with no lyrics specifically to be used for instrumentals or other parts of the song where there are no words being sung. Make sure you know your song orders so that you pull up those slides at the right time. Although the worship leader can likely tell you these things at rehearsal, you will be making his or her job a great deal simpler by learning the songs in advance.
- Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
- What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
- What do you think is the most important job of a media team member?
- Which of the current job responsibilities listed above do you think you currently do well? Explain.
- Which of the current job responsibilities do you think you could do better at? Explain.
- What does the concept of leading worship from the media booth bring to your mind? How can you lead in this position by serving?
- How is your relationship with both your lead pastor and worship pastor? What might you do to improve that relationship even more?
- What is the morale of your media team? What are you doing well to help in this area and what might you do to help improve it?
- How is your timing and with running the slides of your worship set? Other than learning the songs more, what else could you do to help improve your timing?
- How is your knowledge of song order and your ability to follow a song order accurately from start to finish? What might you do to improve where you are currently at in this area?
- Read Matthew 19:30. Discuss how you think this relates to being a media team member.
- TAKEAWAY: Line up a meeting with your worship pastor, worship leader, or lead pastor this week and ask them to give you some constructive feedback on how you can help the media in the service flow better. Remind them you’re here to serve!
- Write a personal action step based on this conversation.