A season of building…

Since returning from Poland, it’s been a flurry of activity leading up to two Worship Arts training conferences that our team recently helped host for college students.
Between one in Minneapolis and one in Indianapolis (pictured above), we were able to train over 160 college students from 3 dozen different campuses. We offer training sessions on the biblical and practical elements of leading worship, and sessions in musical and technical subjects as well.  In very simple terms, we have courses, talks and clinics that focus on the HEART, and also on the ART.

The students that attend are using their musical talents and leading worship on their campuses each week, but there aren’t many people helping them grow in these areas. So for us, it’s a way we can build into the next generation of musicians who want to use their talents for God’s kingdom.

At each of those conferences, we also auditioned student musicians (over 80 of them!) who will make up the worship teams for two large student conferences that happen in Minneapolis and Indianapolis from December 28 to January 1st.

Each team will only take about a dozen students, so there were many hard decisions to make. I will be serving again this year as the music director for the Indianapolis conference. That means I’ll help choose the music, run rehearsals, and get a dozen students (many of whom are complete strangers) made into a band in a very short period of rehearsal time, so they can lead worship for 1800 of their peers.

No pressure.  🙂

It’s stressful and challenging, but the result is students who get an incredible glimpse into how God can use their talent when they are willing to work really hard to give their absolute best. And it’s also a great way for us to recruit students for our own staff – many of them get a clarified sense of their calling by being involved in conferences like this.  So it’s been a season of building into students, and it will be fun to see how things develop as we head into the conferences.

While I am gearing up for that, our team is also preparing to send out Anthem City, a seasonal Christmas-themed rock band, to do outreaches in prisons, homeless shelters and other places where the holidays are not always merry and bright.  They’re in rehearsals now and have about 20 shows in December booked already!

Thanks, as always, for the part you play (and OF COURSE, that pun is intended) in keeping us in ministry. We’re excited to see how God meets us as the year builds to an end.

Please pray…
…for my left hand, again!  My carpal tunnel surgery earlier this year was a success, but I recently had to get two cortisone shots to address some tendonitis that the surgery didn’t cover. If the steroids don’t help, more surgery may be unavoidable. The surgical risks are low, but would involve a lot of downtime that I’d prefer to avoid!  So, please join me in praying for healing, and for wisdom and discernment in the process of diagnosis.