Ain’t No Such Thing as Just a Volunteer

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In my role as Worship Minister, I have the amazing privilege of leading worship with the help of a tremendous band of individuals.  Yes, this includes the band; that is, the drummers, guitar players, keyboard players, etc.  But it also includes the team of singers, audio technicians, power point operators, service coordinators, communion preparers and on and on.

From time to time, I hear one of these dedicated leaders say “I am just a volunteer.”  I’m here to tell you, “there ain’t no such thing as JUST a volunteer.”  This excellent band of disciples is the heart and soul of what happens each time we gather on Sundays to praise and worship God.  They are leaders, colleagues, innovators, truth-tellers, inspirers, problem-solvers, learners, servers, and above all that, friends.  I love my calling because I love the people with whom God has surrounded me.

When I take my place front and center on the chancel, with my trusty Breedlove strapped in front of me, and my wireless mic snugly fastened to my face, and I count off, “one, two, one two three four,” I know that Lisa, Joe, Larry or Greg will lay down a tasty drum track along with Chuck or Mark on bass to set the foundation for the music.  I am confident that Wade, Scott, Liz, Courtney, Adam and/or Greg will have worked on riffs and phrases that will add the spice to what we are trying to do.  I trust that Lindsey, Miranda, Karen, Molly, KJ, Quin, Amanda, Jackie, Steve, Melvin and Mike will know the notes and harmonies, and bring the songs to life for the people of God to follow.

Words will appear on the screens before us at exactly the right moments and in a manner pleasing to our eyes, so that we might worship with confidence.  Well-adjusted sounds will emanate from the mains and the monitors to fill our bodies with the passion and the energy that a great song needs to take us to a spiritual place of adoration and gratitude for the music, the moment, in praise of our Creator.

Candles will have been lit.  Communion will have been prepared.  Cue sheets are in hand.  Routine and order create a springboard from which the Holy Spirit can send our spirits soaring.  Yes, much of the behind the scenes work may have been done by paid staff, but an equal and probably more important amount is done week after week, year after year, by “volunteers,” who, I fear, underestimate the significant part they play in nurturing the people of God.

And so today, as always, I praise God that I have the honor and joy of leading worship at Middletown Christian Church.  I extend an even greater praise that when I stand to sing, I am surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses who do what is required so that the whole church might join our voices together to magnify and adore Creator God and Jesus Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit.