What musicians should look for in a church

In recent weeks many of my fellow artists and musicians on social media have asked for recommendations regarding churches and ministries to visit. Here are a few tips for artists who are looking for a church family.

What to look for in a church

If you have already found a church home, then you should continue to cultivate a strong relationship with your church family. If you have not, you should prayerfully look for a ministry and pastor that preaches and teaches the Bible in its entirety and presents the unaltered gospel of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Denominational labels can influence how the church chooses to practices their faith, but don’t let denominational differences stop you from joining a great church – unless those practices conflict with Biblical truth. Secondly, check out the culture and relational behavior of the members. Look at whether the church promotes love, family, personal connections and care for those outside the church. Are the members strong, happy, balanced, God – loving, and open to new people and friends? Are the pastors/ leaders walking the talk in their own lives and in their families?  The Bible says that church leaders must rule their houses well. If there is clearly a spirit of division and unforgiveness in the families of leaders, then you can guess that spirit resides in the members as well.

If those qualifications are met, examine the church’s view of your profession. Do they understand your calling to play music both within and outside the church? Do they see music as being owned by the church, or owned by God? Does the pastor have a heart for artists and the role artists play in the culture? If the pastor is a musician (as many pastors are formerly or currently involved in music ministry), is he or she willing to nurture other musicians?  Or, are they controlling and judgmental of the next generation of musicians?  I’m blessed that my pastors at  Metro Life Church, Steve and Mary Alessi,  are keenly aware of how music and the arts can affect culture, and they encourage our team members to reach beyond the church walls with their gifts. This freedom is a blessing to a musician like me that once struggled with the notion of being called to a profession outside of full-time ministry.

I advise you to pray, ask lots of questions, and to seek out wise counsel when connecting to a pastor and his / her vision. But by all means, connect with one. Being a part of a healthy church family is essential to your spiritual health and your musical career.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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One thought on “What musicians should look for in a church

  1. Hello Allen,
    I am so glad that I am finally able to take time to read your blog! I love your respect for God’s Word the Bible! I wholeheartedly agree that we must search for a religion that accurately teaches the truth based on the Bible and not on human philosophies and traditions.

    As you know, John 4:24 tells us that, “God is a Spirit, and those worshipping him must worship with spirit and truth.” And that truly should be the determining factor in finding the right religion because if not, Mark 7:7-9 indicates, “It is in vain that they keep worshipping me, for they teach commands of men as doctrines. You let go of the commandment of God and cling to the tradition of men.” Further, he said to them: “You skillfully disregard the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition.” So it is actually “in vain” (a total waste of time) to worship God incorrectly.

    As you mentioned, prayer is a vital factor in finding the religion that pleases God and can do that by asking for his guidance as did the Psalmist at Psalms 43:3, “Send out your light and your truth. May these lead me; May they guide me to your holy mountain and to your grand tabernacle.” Praying for HIs light and truth will help us to, “Draw close to God, and he will draw close to you.” as is mentioned at James 4:8.

    But also notice what Psalm 145:18 tells us, “God Jehovah is near to all those calling on him, To all who call on him in truth”. So just calling on God is not enough, it clearly says “to all who call on him in truth”. We know the Scriptures make this clear as shown at Matthew 7:21-23 “Not every one saying Lord, Lord will enter into the Kingdom of the heavens……”
    See, 1 John 4:1 warns us, “Beloved ones, do not believe every inspired expression, but test the inspired expressions* to see whether they originate with God, because many false prophets have gone forth into the world.” So what does that mean? We actually have to study God’s Word the Bible ourselves, because as it states at Romans 14:12 “Each of us will render an account for himself to God.” and at John 17:3, “This means everlasting life, their coming to know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ.” So ultimately we are responsible for our own knowledge of the Bible.
    By taking it upon ourselves to look into the Bible and to pray for guidance, we can learn the answers to many of the questions that confuse many people today including many religious leaders that should know the Bible.

    For example:

    What is God’s real purpose for the earth?
    * Psalms 37:29 “The righteous will possess the earth,
    And they will live forever on it.”
    * Psalms 104:5 “He has established the earth on its foundations; It will not be moved from its place* forever and ever.”

    What really happens when we die?
    * Ecclesiastes 9:5 “For the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing at all, nor do they have any more reward, because all memory of them is forgotten.”
    * Psalm 146:4 “His spirit* goes out, he returns to the ground;
    On that very day his thoughts perish.”

    What’s the Hope for our dead loved ones?
    * John 5:28 “Do not be amazed at this, for the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice+ 29 and come out, those who did good things to a resurrection of life, and those who practiced vile things to a resurrection of judgment.”

    Revelation 20:13 “And the sea gave up the dead in it, and death and the Grave* gave up the dead in them, and they were judged individually according to their deeds.”

    Revelation 21:4 “And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes,+ and death will be no more,+ neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore.+ The former things have passed away.”

    1 Corinthians 15:26, “And the last enemy, death, is to be brought to nothing.”

    Looking into the Bible for ourselves can be a major blessing!

    Proverbs 3:5,6 let’s us know, that if we, “Trust in God with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding. In all your ways take notice of him, and he will make your paths straight.”

    I love you brother and hope to see you soon!!!