In preparing training for our worship teams recently, I came across a startling definition of communication.


15% – content
30% – tone or emotion
55% – body language

There is was, 55 %, the ammunition that I needed to convince our teams that they simply have to invest more time preparing so they can be more expressive on stage. When reviewing our services on video, I still see frowns and unsmiling faces which communicate that they don’t believe what they are singing and playing.

It sometimes feels fake or as if I am asking for a performance to teach about stage presence in church, but I feel we must. A performer makes it all about themselves, a lead worshiper makes it all about God. I feel compelled to help them embrace this definition of communication.

If the definition holds true, and I feel it does, than our content can be completely lost in the delivery. There are times that we have worked to choose just the right songs to support the Pastor’s teaching, prayed over them, convinced that they were God’s choices – only to find that they seemed to fall on deaf ears with our congregation.

As I review our services on video each week, the biggest difference I see is in the delivery. When the team looks distracted, under prepared or unhappy the congregation just stands there.

I direct our services. But, I force myself to remove my head set and walk up front and worship during our final service each weekend. My worship is directly affected by the team leading. I am either encouraged, by their body language and emotion to join in – or, when their body language distracts from the content of a song, I close my eyes avoiding distraction.

That is what my training will try to convince them of: the CONTENT, EMOTION and BODY LANGUAGE all have to match to look authentic in worship. People cannot hear the content unless your body language supports what you are saying. You cannot sing “Praise to the Lord” and frown!

The second part of the training I will be doing is to let them watch a silent sample of our 4 worship teams.

What better way to see if your leading is distracting, then to watch yourself in silence. This is brutal evaluation! No beautiful melody to fall back on, no amazing guitar skills to mask what isn’t happening on your face. Just your silent body language.

I pray God will use my time with our teams to encourage them to live out their love for Him on stage!

I count it my privilege and responsibility to continuously look for ways to lead our teams to a higher level of connection with our congregation and our Lord.

I would love to know, do you teach stage presence to your teams? Why or why not?