I get it. The early service is starting, and there are more people in the band than in the pews. People will file in as we lead our rocktastic worship opener, and we're wondering why they're not jumping right in.
That very morning, good dads and good moms in your congregation were in their homes losing their patience trying to get their kids out the door. Some husbands and wives might have just found out for the 15th time that they can't be parents just yet. People are coming in, weighed down from tense weekend conversations. Oh, and others are just plain tired. Right now, not everybody is ready to worship God, much less call Him loving and good.
And then there's us worship leaders. Yes, we're probably going through some junk as well. But, we have a distinct advantage here. At this point in the morning, we've already spent maybe an hour singing truths about and praises to God. We've also chewed on the set's themes for a week, and have hand-picked songs that fit oh so well. Oh, and we probably already enjoy singing in general. Our souls are primed, are voices are warmed up, and all lyrical content has already been digested.
So, how can we help this smattering of lives come together to earnestly worship our God? Here's the trick: lead them. LEAD them. Don't just plow through the opening song, hands stretched way high and eyes way closed. Let your first song and scripture be filled with sweet truths about who God is, and not about how we feel about it. Give your church some transition into worshiping, and don't be afraid to intentionally engage them where they are. Sing the song with them, not at them.
I can't say for sure how the Holy Spirit will use that space you've established. But, it is a clear recipe for drawing people into something that isn't always natural.
Be their leader. Help them transition into worshiping God, and then get the heck out of their way.