Not Just Leading the Music
Across the Canada and Bermuda territory, there are examples of music leaders that have been a part of a particular corps for years and have provided leadership in some capacity for many of those years. Recently, it occurred to me that music and arts leaders are often a consistent presence in the lives of those in their groups. Because of this consistent present, a corps music leader has a tremendous opportunity and responsibility to walk with their people on their discipleship journey.
We cannot ignore our mandate from the Great Commission to “go and make disciples.” Acts 1:8 tells us that we will be witnesses to the ends of the earth. In Matthew 4:19-20, Jesus invites us to follow him and then go and be “fishers of men.” As music leaders, we hope that our music and the message of our music draws all people into a closer relationship with Jesus. In addition, we should consider the people of our groups, the people already in our care. Are we helping them in their discipleship journey?
I will openly admit that when I started in music leadership at my corps while in my early twenties, I didn’t think that discipleship was a big part of my “job description.” I only thought my job was to pick the music and conduct it. I attended that corps for 15 years and the reality is that I developed friendships with so many members of the corps through my consistent involvement in music leadership. It was through these friendships that many conversations about faith and the Christian journey would happen. I recognized there were many ways that I could encourage, teach, and learn alongside those who are walking the same discipleship journey as me. If you’re anything like me, talking about faith, even with Christians, is sometimes hard when I feel I don’t have the answers, or when there is a passage of Scripture that I just can’t figure out. I have to remind myself consistently that, “The Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.” (Luke 12:12)
Can we walk a discipleship journey with someone as we walk through ours? Absolutely! For those who are under our care, they need us to do so. If we are all to have the wisdom, strength, and humility needed to minister in music, then we have to learn with each other, grown in our faith alongside each other, and hold each other up as we continue to live out our lives for Jesus.
I spoke earlier about the consistency that many music leaders provide in the fabric of their churches. It is through our commitment and consistency as music leaders that we can build friendship and relationships that allow us to walk in a deep faith with those around us.
22-25 So let’s do it—full of belief, confident that we’re presentable inside and out. Let’s keep a firm grip on the promises that keep us going. He always keeps his word. Let’s see how inventive we can be in encouraging love and helping out, not avoiding worshiping together as some do but spurring each other on, especially as we see the big Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:22-25 MSG)