You've probably noticed Sarah Brown on stage, rocking the guitar (and the purple hair!) - but it's her heart for worship that shines the most. Here's what she had to say about bringing her gifts as part of the worship team:
Which serving team are you part of?
I'm on a few. I'd say the majority of my time is with the worship team--I play guitars (acoustic, electric, bass) and sing. I think I've played in literally every area a musician CAN be involved with, but currently I'm mostly just doing Twenty20 and Woodstock campus.
How long have you been serving in that area?
I guess it's been ten years now! I joined when I was a fresh 14 year-old!
What’s the best part about serving on that team?
As a musician, I think it's beautiful to be able to bring to the table something you love and invest a lot of time in. One of the super cool things about the Church is that it's one of the only "organizations" in society where pretty much everyone is welcome (at least that's the goal). You can be any age, gender, race, in any financial bracket and with any education level and into any hobby under the sun.
Being a part of the worship team is one of the reasons that I've grown a lot as a musician because it put me in an environment where I had to learn to play with lots of very different people. And to be honest I can look at it the opposite way too--being a musician on the team helped me grow as a PERSON because I got to do life with lots of very different people.
What’s the greatest challenge you’ve experienced through serving? What’s the greatest lesson you’ve learned while serving on that team? How does serving in that area contribute to the big picture (Building relationships with God, one another and the world)?
I would have to say it's the challenge of handling the platform. I've gone through a bit of a personal evolution on this one, but what I mean is it's a privilege when people trust you to lead in a public way and there is a lot of personal maintenance necessary for anyone in that position.
I'll say it. I've been very vain, very self-centered, very self-conscious, very pretentious, very hypocritical, very fake. THIS IS REAL TALK.
Sometimes it's just easy to roll with the "I've won the Best Christian Ever award, like, every year" story! The fact of serving in a very visible way at church is that sometimes people know your name, family, and birthday before you've ever had a conversation with them. And people LOVE music, so as a young musician you get loads of kind people buttering your ego. But when all those kind people start to blur together and you finally realize you have a highly-advanced performance complex, it's time to step back and assess what serving is really about.
It takes a conscious choice to stop seeing crowds and start seeing individuals. It takes a steady feed of Truth to deconstruct why you care so much--why I care so much--what people conclude about your character. It's not your job to protect your reputation (Phil 2:7 - Jesus made Himself of no reputation, and became a servant).
Ask Jesus who He says you are and listen for the answer. Ripping out a guitar solo or collecting offering buckets or shaking hands at the door are the small things. The big deal about serving isn't about any of these things in the end; it's about being there for people. It's about being YOU for people and enjoying when they are THEM.
Seriously, just open a new browser right now and look up 1 Corinthians 12 and 13. Start in verse 12 of chapter 12. It explains what I'm getting at way better than I'm saying it. Heck, there's even musical instruments mentioned in there, so you can be sure the worship team is a great place to live this one out.