ABILITIES, GIFTS, AND SKILLS IN
In any given church, the abilities, gifts, and skills of
singers and musicians are an important consideration.
Some prefer they be skillful. Still others desire the
worship team be people marked by a deep, mature walk
with the Lord. Me? I want both!
In order to be effective in the energy we exert in training
and building the skills of singers and musicians, it is
important for us to understand just what abilities, gifts,
and skills are in terms of the worship ministry. It's more
than semantics. There are differences between these
words although we frequently hear them interchanged.
There are reasons why a skillful musician may not
automatically be an effective song leader/worship leader.
An illustration of the differences between ability,
giftedness, and skill would be the differences in the value
of a diamond. At its raw stage, its value is determined
by its carat weight and/or colour. This would be like the
difference between ability and giftedness. The weightier
the rock or the more appealing the colour, the more
potential the diamond has. A gifted person's "weight" or
"colour" would be higher than in a person with "only"
ability. However, this does not mean that there is NO
value in ability.
As a diamond is cut and polished, its value is also
affected. This would be like developing a person's
ability or gift into a "skill". Therefore, in some
circumstances, an unpolished "gifted" person could be of
less value to a ministry than a polished "able" person.
There needs to be effort and discipline involved in the
process. Otherwise, the raw material never reaches its
Some seem to be naturally expressive in their worship to
God in song, even with limited ability. This could be
indicative of a raw "giftedness". With the addition of 1)
an ability, 2) theological instruction, 3) studies in worship
ministry philosophy, and/or 4) studies in worship ministry
practics, such an individual could become a more
effective team member or worship leader.
Having said all this, I have a question: Is worship listed
as a gift in the Bible? No! It's the posture of ones heart.
The giftedness would be either leadership (Ephesians 4)
or aesthetic artistry (Exodus 31, 35; Acts 9). King David
was described in 1 Samuel 16:18 as a "skilled musician",
but the posture of his heart is also reflected in the fact
that "the Lord was with him"
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