Archives For Jimi Williams

We all struggle at times as worship leaders, musicians and techs on the right balance between presentation and performance, humbleness and showiness, reverent yet engaging. There are a hundred words to describe the point where a worship service crosses our proverbial red line. In many ways our creativity is at war with our conscience. To aggravate things, musicians and techs are often called out as being too slick or showy – much more than teachers and preachers are – even though we implement many of the same techniques to communicate with our audiences…

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Planned or Spontaneous?

Jimi Williams —  February 13, 2014

Whenever I teach about preparing for worship at an event, I inevitably have someone raise their hand and say “I don’t like to plan too much. I’d rather be spontaneous and respond to what the Spirit is doing.” Or I’ve heard people say they won’t use tracks during worship because it limits there spontaneity.

Let’s think this through. There is nothing spiritual or unspiritual about making a plan. In fact, Proverbs 16:3 says “Commit to the Lord whatever you do and your plans will succeed.” The Bible is filled with examples of people who made detailed plans to do something important for God. Nehemiah rebuilt the entire wall around Jerusalem. David built the first temple for God. Jesus’ plan was to endure the cross…

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I had a very wise pastor tell me once to never do ministry alone. As worship leaders we need to understand that we can lead a band every week, be surrounded by a team of people, but still operate our ministry as a “lone ranger”. Here are a few questions to ask yourself to see if you are really building a team…

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A Walk One Winter Night

Jimi Williams —  December 12, 2013

What started as a simple, late night stroll to clear his head from the hassles of the season turned into something that can only be described as…real. The new Christmas story by Al Andrews is a wonderful insight into the real story of Christmas. Beyond the shopping, the ornaments and plastic portrayals of the baby Jesus, Al uncovers the real Jesus, Joseph and Mary behind the facade.

“A Walk One Winter Night” started as an invitation from Dave Barnes for Al to share a Christmas story at Dave’s Christmas concert. There was such an overwhelming response to the story that Worthy Publishing decided to turn it into a book…

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Mercy Tree

Jimi Williams —  November 14, 2013

Telling the story of Christ’s death and resurrection is a fundamental part of worship. Yes, we worship our magnificent God and all His attributes. However, the true nature of God, His justice and mercy, is never seen more clearly than through the cross. May we never loose the wonder of the cross and grow weary of telling the wonderful story of how God became a man, died in innocence on a cross for our sins, and rose again to deliver us from the chains of death.

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Platforms

Jimi Williams —  October 31, 2013

Recently, I’ve heard a lot of talk about platforms and movements. We see it often in the entertainment business, sports and politics. It’s Hollywood stars hanging out with the “right people”. It’s associating with the “right brands”. In politics, a platform can be a public office (Congress), an organization (Rainbow Push Coalition or Tea Party), or a cause. Sometimes a family name can be a platform. Being a Kennedy will open quite a few doors regardless of whether you are a genius or intellectually challenged.

“Leveraging a platform” means using an association with a personality, movement or organization to raise one’s own public persona. Often a platform makes an individual, who is not well known, an industry leader and public figure. We’ve seen this with people like Steve Jobs (Apple) and Yahoo’s Melissa Mayer…

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A few months ago we talked about how to choose songs for your setlist. Now we have five more things to consider when planning your worship set:

THEME

Not every church gathering is going to have a theme or even a subject focus. Many pastors I’ve served under are still forming their sermons on Thursday for the coming Sunday. However, if you do have a theme, it’s powerful to plan songs with the same theme to create touch points with the sermon. For example, if the sermon is on grace, at least a couple of songs with a grace theme, like “Your Grace Is Enough”, will help connect worship to the teaching. You can search for songs by theme at www.WorshipTogether.com.

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Worship and Missions

Jimi Williams —  October 11, 2013

One Sunday after our morning rehearsal I was approached by a man who looked in his 40′s. I could tell by his dress (and smell!) that he had walked in off the street and was probably looking for some money. Since the service was about to begin, I asked if he would mind staying through the service. After which, I would try and find him some help.

My first impulse was to search out our pastor who was over benevolence. I figured that would be the easiest way of getting him help and relieving me from the responsibility. Of course, I couldn’t find the pastor anywhere…

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Church Gear Swiping

Jimi Williams —  October 9, 2013

Dear church music gear swiper,

This is a plea. I am calling on your sense of kindness and compassion. Please stop swiping gear from different worship venues without letting someone know or bringing the item back once you are done.

When I was rehearsing for worship last Wednesday night I realized that the monitors weren’t working, so I went to the soundboard to investigate. I noticed you had swiped 2 cables that connected the soundboard to the monitor sends on the snake.

I corralled one of the students who helps out with sound and blamed him for the swipe. He assured me that it was you and he went and swiped the 2 cables back that I needed from where you left them!

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I was chatting with a friend who is a worship leader the other day and he was telling me about a guy at his church that approached him about helping out in worship. My friend informed him that there was a pretty big rotation of musicians for Sunday morning, but that the church could really use some help at a small recovery ministry that met on Friday evenings.

After spending a day “praying about it”, the guy told my friend that he would not be able to do the Friday ministry and emphasized that he really wanted to play on Sunday morning.

You’ve probably had similar experiences. There’s the musician in your church that is certain that if he/she could only play with the band, their playing would certainly take worship to a whole new level!

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