Here's our set from this morning:
"Kingdom" [Kristian Stanfill] "God is Alive" [Steve Fee and Eddie Kirkland] "Beautiful the Blood" [Steve Fee] "Lord of All" [Kristian Stanfill] "True Love" [Phil Wickham] Message: "5 Love Secrets" by Pastor Jay Response: "I Want to Love You" [Todd Fields] Offertory: "Love is Not a Fight" [Warren Barfield]
I was ready for today. I have been looking forward to it on many levels. We had the entire youth group in the service this morning, which was awesome. Today was billed as "I Love My Church" Sunday, where every Connect Group made it a point to bring their friends with them, and to get people to identify what is about their church that they love. Today was also Pastor Jay's 14th anniversary as pastor of Church at the Mall. My first day as the worship lead for this great church was his 10th anniversary celebration, which means that I have been leading for this church for 4 years today. It's hard to believe. At any rate, there were a lot of reasons to be excited about today, and it really was.
There were quite a few mishaps, be it technical or performance-oriented. Each of us had a mistake in the band, except for our keyboardist, Amanda and our pianist, Melanie. I got thrown off by a miscue, and proceeded to sing the wrong line in the second verse of "Beautiful the Blood." We could not, for the life of us, find our groove on "God is Alive" with the click. "Lord of All" was right on (this one continues to be a favorite for me and for our people), and so was "True Love." Our Pastor was pulling in the parking lot with this song blasting on his car stereo. I love it. It was a perfect fit with his message today. I love how the Spirit makes it all fit together so beautifully.
The biggest technical mishap was at the beginning of the offertory, where we did "Love is Not a Fight" by Warren Barfield, which is an amazing song. When I went to begin the acoustic-only introduction, there was only noise. Nothing was getting through but static. Of course, at this point, everyone in the room is watching me try and figure it out. I unplugged my mute box send to my tuner, which didn't help. I then jiggled the XLR cables on either side of the mute box, and it came on extremely loud, because my sound man had boosted it to try and get anything. However, because I unplugged my tuner, it was a different, crazier-sounding static. Meanwhile, our executive pastor, Steve, brought a mic out to put in front of the guitar to go old-school. Right as he got it set up, everything was fixed with my guitar, and we got rolling. I had to say something, so I joked, "Sorry about that!" and everyone (thankfully) laughed along. The song went great after that. It is really a beautiful, honest, and powerful song about love. It was borne out of adversity. See the story here.
It was just that kind of a morning. It seemed and felt like the enemy was trying to interfere with what went on today. God was certainly at work. During the prayer time, Jay called on the men of the church to pray and ask God to help them be the men He has called them to be for their families. Dozens of men came down to the altar to pray in the middle of the service. It was a beautiful thing to witness. The people responded powerfully in worship of our King, and that was also very encouraging and a reminder that it doesn't depend on everything going perfectly. I struggle with that, because of my perfectionism, but in the end God receives the glory because He is the one who makes the spiritual happen. I cannot manufacture it, nor can anyone else on the team. We can only facilitate. While it doesn't alleviate our responsibility to lead and to plan, that is truly a freeing thing.
I love my church, and I am so thankful that the Lord has brought me here. Happy Valentine's Day, by the way.
All the Glory belongs to Him,
p.s. be sure to check out Sunday Set Lists at www.theworshipcommunity.com to see what other churches/leaders did this morning.