When I was in Jr. High and High School, leading worship with my peers was my favorite part of youth group. Not only did it help me develop as a musician and as a singer, but as a worship leader as well. Just this fall the youth ministry started hosting our own Creative Worship Night. This is designed for students who want to be a part of the youth worship team that plays at our Syosset and Manhasset campuses for our Sunday morning youth class. I’ve seen our students experience the community of a worship team and the growth that takes place in individual leadership on a musical and spiritual level. One of the main things that we've been talking about when we gather is that we are all worship leaders. When we’re on stage we want to be influencers of worship, inviting God's presence. John 3:30 says "He must increase, but I must decrease." We don't want to make our ministry about us, our talents, or our skills. Instead, every action inside of our ministry should point to Jesus and what He's done. This week, I encourage you to apply this verse to your life and make Jesus evident through the actions of your ministry!
This political season is filled with embarrassing leaks and secret revelations from candidate’s private conversations and e-mails. Most of it is disappointing and disgusting. As I start to condemn them I think about what comes out of my mouth. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21). Nothing is private; I will be responsible for my words. God’s Word gives instruction about my conversations—“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen” (Ephesians 4:29). In a world where most things are beyond my control, I am in total control of what comes out of my mouth. When they play back my tapes, I want those words to be godly, clean, humble, uplifting and peaceful. How about you? Review your words this week.