NEW! Free Worship Team Devotional Series Part 1 – The 6 must-haves for a worship musician

NEW! Free Worship Team Devotional Series Part 1 – The 6 must-haves for a worship musician


We kick off an exciting series of 10 short worship team devotionals written by guest blogger Jon Nicol from

This week is an introduction to the 6 “Must-Haves” of a worship musician.

What makes for a good worship team musician?

Gotta have talent, right? But is talent enough?

Or is it good enough to be faithful to the ministry?

Where does passion fit? Or spiritual maturity?




How about that often intangible idea of being “called” to the ministry?

Think about the building materials of a house – not the granite countertops and the hand-carved mantle you see on HGTV – but the stuff that holds the house together. From the foundation to the roof, it’s all important, but each element plays a unique role. In the next several “200 Words…” articles we’ll explore six elements that build a great worship musician. From the apex down to the foundational elements, here they are:

  1. Called
  2. Teachable
  3. Available
  4. Talented
  5. Surrendered
  6. Passionate

We’ll be starting with the base and working our way up over the next several weeks. Be open to what God might want to teach you through these 10 weeks.

Read: Psalm 127:1

Without the help of the LORD it is useless to build a home or to guard a city. (CEV)

Unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain.


  1. What are some of the different ways the principle from Psalm 127:1 applies to our worship ministry?
  2. How would you rank these “must-have” characteristics?
    Follow up: And why?
  3. If you could add one characteristic to this list, what would it be?
    Follow up: which current characteristic would you replace to add this one?
  4. Which “must-have” is the one that you’ve given the least thought to?
    Follow up: Why do you think that is?
  5. Which characteristic do we need the most improvement on as a team?
    Follow-up: How do we strengthen that area?

How to use the Must Haves team devotional

This “Must Haves” team devotional was born out of a series within a series of blogs, “200 Words or Less About Being a Worship Musician: The Key Elements of a Worship Musician.”  The six “Must-Haves” are in no way the only “must-haves.” And with only 200 words, I only scratched the surface to get people to think about what was underneath. In several entries I was able say some things that are often a little difficult to say directly to a team member (or a leader). And let’s face it, even if we tell the hard truths to our team, they often don’t “catch it” until they hear it from an outside source.

There is nothing magical about 200 words; however, it is something you can read in about 2 or 3 minutes (the attention span of the average musician) and gives just enough space to make a single point to get people thinking. As I was finishing up this series, I thought it just might work as a worship team devotional. While each reading is largely unchanged from the blog, I added some extra supporting scripture and discussion questions for this devotional. I also included a bonus week from an entry entitled: “The Worship Musician as Teacher”

“What if I don’t agree with a point an article makes?” Good question. Go ahead and use it, but discuss why or why not this is a valid point for your ministry. The things that provoke discussion and deeper consideration are often points we don’t completely agree with. But it will either a) change our minds, b) solidify our beliefs, or start us down a new journey to discover “c”.

I know what you’re thinking: you or your band have past horror stories of “team devotionals” that dragged on at the hands of a verbose leader or a well-intentioned team member who shanghaied the discussion and prayer to his/her agenda. In light of that, consider using this resource not as a “devotional,” but as a 15-minute “centering” time before you rehearse:

3-4 minutes: Read the “Must-Have” article and scripture(s) for that week. Engage others by having them read the devotional or scriptures.

7-10 minutes: Spend time discussing the questions. Try to move through all the questions, even if it seems like people would like to talk more on a certain one. If you leave your team wanting more, 1) impromptu discussions will likely resume later and 2) it makes them more open to participate in the next “centering.”

2-5 minutes: Prayer. Be sensitive to the fact that the discussion of these issues will be on your team’s heart as they pray. Some ministry teams may be accustomed to longer prayer times. Others simply pray to open.  You pray how your ministry feels led to pray, and allow for what God may be doing in your team members’ hearts as a result of the discussion.

Each week’s devotional can separately e-mailed to your team members who aren’t scheduled that week, so they can connect with future discussion.

Get the Must-Haves Worship Team Devotional

We’ll be running this series over the coming weeks but if you liked it and would like to download the whole 10-week devotional ebook for free you can do so using the link below. It not only includes the ebook, but a printable version so you can take a hard copy to rehearsals. Also the download includes a separate pdf for each week so you can email it to your whole team. This way, you can foster an email discussion with those who aren’t scheduled that week.

Must Haves Devotional – Introduction session (that’s this article)

Must Haves Devotional – Called

Get “The Must Haves” Devotional

Must Haves – Teachable (part 1)

Must Haves – Teachable (part 2)

Must Haves – Passion

Get “The Must Haves” Devotional – the full series

Thanks to Jon for his generosity in making this resource available to us.

Other posts you might find helpful:

Free discussion resource for housegroups from Seth Godin

Walking Bible video clip – explore the Bible with the help of music

Advice from Graham Kendrick on spontaneous improvisation in worship

Graham Kendrick on spontaneous worship – Part 2 Praises from the belly of a whale