Balancing a Full Time Job & Full Time Ministry

Balancing a Full Time Job & Full Time Ministry
IBC MusicFest 2008

* Music is one of the most visible ministries in your church
* Many times the music comprises 50% or more of a service
* How can we maintain an active, thriving music department and everything else on our agenda?

Maintain a Balanced Spiritual Life


* Spiritual ‘Fuel Tank’ on ‘E’
* Burnout
* Stress / Tension – Attack the body physically and mentally
* Distractions
* Too busy working the service!


* Learn to say “No!”
* Proper Rest / Diet / Exercise
* Drink lots of water
* Quite Time
* Persistent Prayer Life – Our most effective weapon
* Quality Fellowship – Atmosphere has great influence in our live

Relationship with others


* Must have a good personal relationship with pastor – Trust
* Never take Pastor by surprise especially during a service
* I meet with Pastor 15 minutes prior to every service
* Church Staff must operate as a Team with Shared Goals / Vision
* Friends  with open communication positive and negative
* Show Appreciation
o Birthday Card
o Gift Certificate
o Card  Just because
* Music Budget
o Conferences
o New Repertoire (How many CDs do you have to buy to get ONE good usable song?)
o Subscription Services (I subscribe to Benson)
o Instrument Repairs
o End of the Year Party
o Music Productions (Costumes, Props, Trax)
o Sound Tracks – Some that I use:
* We Have Overcome – Christ Tabernacle Choir
* Psalm 23 – IBC
* You Are God / Lord, I Praise You – Christ Church Singers
* Thou, O Lord – IBC
* Let the Glory Come Down – Christ Tabernacle Choir
* Praise You – Brentwood-Benson

The Congregation

* Know your congregation
* What’s the attitude of your church as a whole right now?
* Focus on their needs – What do they ‘need’ to hear at this moment?
* 4 Principle Responsibilities that I use to govern my ministry in a service:
o Help bring praise and worship into the service
o Set the mood by creating an appropriate atmosphere where God can speak to the church
o Set the stage for the minister – Build a foundation
o Seamless Continuity
* Communication
o You communicate as a leader
o Your department communicates with the congregation – Every person on the platform is a Worship Leader
o Body Language / Facial Expressions

Sound Team

o Good working relationship
o Give praise to the sound team – JUST DO IT!
o Send thank you cards
o Have them participate in rehearsals
o Provide a list of songs / soloists before every service to sound team
and identify any tracks that will be used

The Choir And Musicians

Turn Your Choir into a Family

* People don’t care how much you know until they know that you care

* Dictatorship – Not! Requires patience, long suffering, humbleness, trust
* Rostrum Policy – Pastor must approve all applicants prior to being on
* Have Fun – It’s OK to SMILE and have fun
* Monthly Newsletter (Get someone that’s creative to do this for you)
o Announcements
o Schedule
o Humor
o Birthdays
o Quotes from the congregation (as long as they’re good )
* Encourage your department to listen to the style of music that youperform
* Morale Boosters
o End of Year Party
o Small group rehearsals at your home / snacks / dessert
o Buy an extra CD while here at the conference and give it away
o CD preview / review for you

Incorporate Volunteers

* I don’t have to do EVERYTHING myself
* Put trust and responsibility in/on others
* Music Department Secretary
o Takes care of all correspondence
o Coordinates list of songs for service with sound people
o Keeps attendance
o Coordinates special rehearsals, refreshments, etc. when needed
* Sectional Leaders to teach choir parts during rehearsal

Develop Long-Term Goals

* Organize / Plan
* List the Priorities for your department and for yourself – Not too high
* Stephen Covey’s Urgent vs. Important Matrix (Google it)
* Organizer / Daily Planner / Outlook Calendar
* Annual Choir Clinic – This is a must!
o Consider a One Voice Clinic with Joy Norris
* Monthly or Quarterly Rehearsal – On the Church Calendar from the beginning of the year

Where to Find Additional Resources

* See Back of Handout
* Ask your singers and musicians to help find new repertoire
* Network with other MOM’s
* Use the Internet to search for information, purchase the latest CDs, find articles on how to sing properly, etc.
* Some good web sights when looking for new material:
* The Ultimate IDEA Book for Music Ministry! 500 Great Ideas
o Distributed by “Word Music”
o Volume 1: $60
o Volume 2: $90
* Book: “He’s Been Faithful” by Carol Cymbala
* Book: “The Heart of the Artist” – Rory Noland


* Plan Rehearsal Times / Schedules – Try to schedule when other things are going on at the church that don’t conflict
* Maximize the time that you have for the rehearsal  Many times we are the ones that waste the most time because of our lack of preparation
* Create a Rehearsal Time Schedule
o How long do we have?
o What songs are we going to practice, learn, relearn, etc.
o How long do I plan to spend on each
o Eliminate lag time
o Have your music in order and ready to go prior to the rehearsal
o Share the schedule with your musicians
o Play one of your new songs in the rehearsal room that you plan to start teaching in this rehearsal while the choir/group is arriving

Rehearsal Techniques

* Make sure you know the vocal parts well before you start teaching the song
* Choir members should not be afraid to make mistakes
* Choir members should feel free to request the playing of a single part
* When teaching one part, other groups should be listening to learn the words or singing their part lightly if already been taught
* To suggest a difficulty is to make one. Only emphasize if absolutely necessary
* Elaborate instructions prior to starting a selection will be forgotten. Make the requests simple
* Be sure to conclude each rehearsal with a feeling of accomplishment
* Variety is `the spice of life’. Try not to conduct each rehearsal after a ‘set pattern’
* Do not spend too much time in one section or selection before moving on
* If a selection doesn’t click after a reasonable amount of rehearsing, drop it
* Avoid generalizations such as ‘the tenors were flat’ or ‘the sopranos are dragging’. Correct the difficulty
* The choir will learn more easily and retain what they learn when it is rehearsed ten to fifteen minutes a week for six weeks as opposed to thirty minutes a week for two weeks
* Prepare Tape or CD of New Songs for next couple of months – Will greatly enhance your productivity in rehearsal
* Provide choir with words – Yes or No?
* Annual Music Department meeting – Request feedback (If you’re not going to do anything with the feedback, don’t ask for it.)

Running a Smooth Rehearsal

* Start on Time – regardless of how many are there
* If problem with people getting there on time, teach a new P&W chorus at beginning of rehearsal
* ALWAYS begin with Vocal Warm-ups
o I use “Oh, How I Love Jesus”*
* Start in a low key (Ab) and hum in unison – get the resonators buzzing
* Up a key with an ‘Ooo’
* Up a key with an ‘Ahh’
* Up a key with words  parts
o The Vocal Workout Series: “Choir Warm Ups”.
* Chris & Carole Beatty
* Follow Your Prepared Schedule
* GET EXCITED! Your attitude can make or break the music department
* Humor  All sing better when relaxed
* Always give praise  Find a reason
* Building people up
* Work as Quickly as Possible  Eliminate lag time
* Discipline Tactics
o Don’t Out Shout the Choir – Why ruin your voice
o Tell them you’ll wait for them to finish their conversation
o Talk about using time wisely
o Single out a person in the rehearsal (Be Careful!)
o Compliment 2  Critique 1
o Pre-Planned attack

o Stop the rehearsal and ask God to help you and the choir to be good stewards of the time together
* Leadership
o Sample of sources
* Dr. John Maxwell  Christian Author
* “The 21 1 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership”
* “Developing the Leader within You”
* “The Winning Attitude”
* “Thinking for a Change”
* “The 360 Degree Leader”
* Steven Covey
* “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People”
* Dale Carnegie
* “How to Win Friends and Influence People”
o Personality Traits
o Many of these resources can be checked out of your local library

The Musicians

* Team Work  There’s no stars in the work for God
* Separate Rehearsal (if possible)
* Challenge the musicians
* Always offer praise for things well done

Your Own Family

* Include spouse / children when appropriate
o Preview CD’s
o Critique specific songs
o Type lyrics
* Honor their quite time
* Quality time – Give them some of your Best time, not just the leftover time

Additional Resources

1. Music Conferences: Contact other conferences and purchase their packet even if you don’t go. Great source for new material.
2. Latest Projects by Pentecostal Artists:
a. Pentecostal Publishing House:
b. White Steeple Bookstore:
3. Latest Projects by Black Gospel Groups:
4. 4. Notes Of Joy – Learn to play an instrument or start a band program
a. Internet Address:
b. Sam Kelly: (303) 810-5311
5. 5. J&J Music
a. Choral (Adult, Youth, Children), Orchestral, Drama, Handbell, MIDI, Musictalk
b. Sign up for a free Magazine, “The Communicator”. Music Director Mailing List.
c. Internet Address:
d. Phone: (800) 456-49666.
6. Gospel Melodies Chord Exchange – Mostly exchanges of chords for Black Gospel style songs:
b. This site changes its address quite frequently. You might have to do a search on Yahoo or Google to find the latest site.
7. Internet Sights that provide lead sheets for many of the new choruses and songs that are coming out. Just a few examples:
8. Help learning to play Gospel style music with videos:

The above article, ‘Balancing a Full Time Job & Full Time Ministry,’ is excerpted from the IBC Music Fest 2008 Binder.

The material is most likely copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study or research purposes.