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5/8/12 at 02:54 PM 1 Comments

How Is Your Worship Team "Really" Doing?

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By Jason Hatley

When is the last time you got on the balcony?

No – not the balcony at your church building or even the hotel from your last vacation.

It’s Jason Hatley here (Pastor of Worship Arts at The Journey Church) with a quick (but important) leadership principle that every pastor and worship leader needs to practice… Getting on the Balcony.

Getting on the balcony simply means taking some time on a regular basis to rise above the hectic pace of your everyday work to see how your worship ministry is really doing.

You see… it’s impossible to know how things are really going in your worship ministry when you’re in the daily grind. It’s like being on the floor during a packed out concert. You can look around and see some things, but you don’t have a good perspective on the whole arena.

So, when you “get on the balcony” you are leaving the busyness of the floor seats for a little while to get a bird’s eye perspective on your ministry. And here’s what happens…

#1 – You find that some areas of your team are not doing as well as you initially thought.

It’s true . . . whenever we take regular time (I’m talking about once a month) to back up and objectively ask, “How are things really going right now?” we’ll often find that some areas of our team that we thought were very strong, actually have a few holes in them and need our attention.

For example, if stewardship and tithing is a value of your worship team members like it is here at The Journey, it’s easy to hope that everyone is honoring God with their finances. But when you get on the balcony and take an objective viewpoint, you may find that fewer members of your team are giving than you had originally thought.

Getting on the balcony lets you know that you still have some work to do on that area.

#2 – You find that some areas of your team are actually stronger than you thought.

If there has been an area that you’ve been really working on with your team (say… everyone on your team being in a small group Bible study), then after a month of putting heat on that value, it’s important to step back and ask, “Are we doing better in this area?”

You will likely find that this area has improved and so now you can turn your attention to another area of growth.

#3 – You find time to dream new dreams for your team.

If your team feels stagnant, like you haven’t tried anything new for God in awhile, chances are you haven’t gotten on the balcony much lately.

You see, when you regularly remove yourself from the daily race to spend some time examining your team, you find you also have time to dream and plan. Some of our most creative worship expressions here at The Journey have come out of some personal balcony time where I put down my to-do list for an hour and went to work on my ministry rather than in my ministry.

If you feel like you’re in a rut right now, you need some balcony time!

Let me share with you a secret to Worship Ministry that I learned many years ago . . .

. . . Your worship ministry is a constant work in progress. (I bet you already knew that – ha!).

No matter how long you lead, there will always be an area that needs your attention. Something that was fine-tuned last month will need a tune-up next month.

As leaders we are constantly on the look-out for areas of our team that need direction or correction. And that’s why it’s so important to get on the balcony once a month and ask, “How are things ‘really’ going?”

The problem is . . . very few pastors or worship leaders EVER take time to do this! Caught in the endless race of the day-to-day, the never take time to pull back and examine their team and dream new dreams for it.

John Maxwell writes in his book Thinking for a Change, “The greatest enemy of good thinking is busyness.”

In over 10 years of ministry at The Journey and over 6 years of coaching worship leaders I’ve found that the key to getting from where you are now to where you want to be is to create monthly balcony time.

In my coaching networks, that is one of the #1 benefits that worship leaders experience… a reason to get on the balcony every month.

Listen to what Mackenzie Pinto from First United Methodist Church writes (she just finished my last coaching network):

“The Coaching Network gave me a chance to evaluate my current systems, or lack of systems, and make the necessary changes to become as effective as possible. The thoughts, ideas, and questions posed throughout the Network kept me constantly thinking about my ministry.”

That’s the power of Getting on the Balcony.

So let me ask you a few questions to help you get started . . .

  • Do you have a system for creating balcony time every month?
  • Or better yet . . . what if you had a system to evaluate your worship ministry every month with me and a group of other worship leaders who are all committed to seeing God’s very best in our churches?
  • What if you had a way to unplug from the hectic pace of ministry every month and get laser-focused on how to bring health to the most important areas of your team and overcome the BIG challenges that you’re facing right now?
  • What if you had a coach / mentor / friend to walk beside you, answer your questions, share feedback, pray for you and help you implement the changes that you know are needed for you to serve your church at the highest level without burning out over the next year?

That’s exactly what my coaching network is all about. And I would be honored if you would prayerfully considering joining.

But — you need to prayerfully consider soon, because the network is getting underway now.

If you want to join with this focused group of Worship Leaders, get on the balcony, and go to work on your worship ministry, then all you need to do is go to, complete the online application (it only takes about 7 minutes) and return it to me ASAP.

I hope you’ll allow me to get on the balcony with you!

Your partner in ministry,


Jason Hatley is Pastor of Worship Arts at The Journey Church in Boca Raton, Florida, and author of Engage: A Guide to Creating Life-Transforming Worship Services and Revolve: A New Way to See Worship.

In 2002, Jason Hatley helped launch The Journey Church in New York City, directing the programming of their worship services. He serves as the Pastor of Worship Arts and built from scratch The Journey’s worship arts team, a group of over 200 artists and technicians who develop and implement the creative and technical elements at weekly Sunday services. The Journey has been recognized as one of Outreach Magazines fastest growing and most creative churches.

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