Have you ever pondered the idea? I know I have. How do we tackle this one specific question?

For starters, we have to think of why we are even asking it. Are we afraid that they aren’t skilled enough? Not mature in the Lord? Not mature period? Not full church members?

These are valid thoughts, but lets walk through each and break them down. Firstly, skill shouldn’t be as big a concern as we might make it. People can learn instruments. Now, in order to have them play as a part of the team, they obviously need some level of proficiency in their instrument. I will warn against, however, continually putting them off until they reach some misguided standard. When I first joined a worship team, I was BAD at playing the guitar. I had no sense of team dynamics, I was in love with distorted sounds (which by the way were very harsh and distracting) and was all around just not that experienced. But I learned more on my first “real” Sunday than I would have in hours of practice by myself. Because the invitation was extended, I can now play with confidence on a team. Who knows how long that would have taken otherwise. Remember, you can work on skill, and it can be earned quite quickly.

Dealing with maturity in the Lord, and in general, you have to remember that none of us are perfect. We all have ways to grow, and we can all be immature. However, it is the striving to be more mature in God that we are set apart. If your youth in question can see this in you and you actively encourage it, you just might see some major changes. Also remember not to mistake immaturity for having fun. The two are often confused, especially when people are experiencing a poor attitude towards a situation. (Now you can recall that situation in elementary school where you had a great laugh, and someone waaay too serious labelled you as immature.) Being able to laugh and have fun as a team is actually a great sign of maturity across the board, and should be embraced. Just make sure that you can be serious when it is called for, and the youth, who is looking up to you by the way, will follow.

Some churchs require that you be a member before you actively engage in ministry there. If that is church policy, there isn’t much that can be done about it except to abide by the rules. There isn’t too much to be said here, as we don’t want to simply charge off and change the rules for the sake of the youth, nor do we want to weild it in their face, saying “Neener neener, the rules say this.”

Personally, I encourage youth presence in a worship band. Not just for a youth band, but for the congregation on Sundays. I don’t know the stats off hand (moslty because the worldwide church statistics are tough to come by), but youth participation in the church is drastically decreasing. We seem to be ineffective at engaging them and really showing them what the church life is like. We honestly can’t afford to push youth to the side. Instead, they should be leading teams, and evangelizing the people around them. When we minister to them, God will minister to us. Think about it.