What does God desire in our worship and worship leading? One word: Brokenness.
In our worship and worship leading, God desires us to be humble, dependent, reliant, weak and broken. This is very opposed to what we find in the church today. Church / Worship Leaders are bold, self-reliant, have all the answers, and are on a mission to change the world. But are we fooling ourselves? Today we talk with our friend Sam Salerno about embracing, even boasting in, our brokenness, weakness and dependance on God. No self-righteousness allowed. Dive into the deep end and feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.
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We’ve created a false religious system that says “if you’re a church leader, you can’t have any struggles.” -Tweet That!
Fear about what others think about us causes us to hide, but hiding breaks intimacy, with people and with God. -Tweet That!
True gospel love is being fully known, and fully accepted. -Tweet That!
When we “let it out of the bag”, others can be honest about their struggles too. -Tweet That!
Worship that is pleasing to God comes from a place of brokenness (Ps. 51:17) -Tweet That!
If you want to be part of the kingdom of God, you have to be broken. (Mt 5:3) -Tweet That!
God created the world out of nothing and as long as we remain nothing, he can make something out of us. – Martin Luther -Tweet That!
God’s goodness shines through when people see that we aren’t the good ones. -Tweet That!
Alex Enfiedjian 00:12 Hello, and welcome to another episode of the worship team podcast. My name is Alex Enfiedjian. And I am your host today, I wanted to say thank you for tuning in and listening. If you’re a regular listener, thank you for the huge privilege and honor it is that you allow me to speak into your life and into your ministry. on a regular basis, I don’t take that lightly, I counted a privilege. And so thank you for allowing me to do that and have that place in your life. And I hope that in some small way, I’m helping you lead Christ’s Church better in your local context. Today’s episode is episode number nine, we’re talking about humility, brokenness, Authenticity, and transparency, as a leader, just really being okay with letting people see you as you truly are, and not putting on a front. And I think, unfortunately, in the church of America, we’ve gotten really good at putting on a front and acting and making everyone think that we’ve got everything together, we don’t struggle. Life is gravy all the time. But that’s just not the case. And, unfortunately, that has also carried over into our worship leading, and our worship planning and our worship programming. And we just focus on the externals. And that is not what God wants from us in worship. What he wants from us, is for us to be real, authentic, raw, unfiltered, broken, humble, needy, honest, desperate. I mean, these are the words that God wants to describe our worship, he wants it to be true and from the heart. But as we do it week after week, and we lead week after week, and we’re training people week after week, and we’re striving for excellence week after week, it’s so easy to just start to get numb to our own need for grace and to our own desperate wickedness of our heart. And just go through the motions and sing the songs without really having hearts that are needy, desperate, broken, and understanding where we are properly before God, and how good he is. So that’s kind of what this whole episode is about. And I actually recorded this episode about two months ago, during my break from the podcast, and it’s a conversation with one of the worship leaders at Cypress named Sam Salerno. And so it’s a little bit more conversational in nature than some of my teaching podcasts. But it’s still full of gold, because Sam is so wise about this topic. So enjoy that. And if if this is a topic that you’re just really interested in, and you’re like, oh, man, I would love to hear more, we actually recorded a lot more, there’s a lot more to the conversation that I that I cut out because of time. So if you’d like to hear like the entirety of the conversation, I’ll have a link in the show notes to the full conversation, unedited, where you can hear kind of everything. But I wanted to keep it short and to the point and practical for you. So I’ll actually come back at the end of this conversation with some practical ways that you can begin implementing some things to breed authenticity in your church. So let’s get right to the conversation. And then I’ll catch you at the back end with some practical implications. Hey, everybody, I’m here with my good friend, Sam Salerno. Sam is one of the worship leaders at Cypress church. And Sam and I have been going through kind of similar things, different things, but a similar result and, and what we’re really going to be honing in and talking about is just like brokenness, humility, Authenticity, transparency, just like being okay with being not okay. And so I asked Sam to come on, just to share a little bit of his story, and kind of where he’s at. Let me just preface this. I don’t want to tell too much of his story for him. But I do want to say that Sam had gone off to Moody Bible Institute, which is where I graduated from Heck, yeah. And Sam was on track to graduate soon. But through some events that he’ll share about just broke down and had to break down and had to end up abandoning his plans and his dream and he came on to Monterey and Salinas, California and showed up at church and I said, Hey, how you doing? And he was just really honest and said, I’m not doing good at all. Yeah, I I’m depressed, I’m having anxiety attacks, I’m not in a good place. And it’s like, you know,
Alex Enfiedjian 05:08 you don’t say stuff like that in church, like, for some reason, in America, and in the Christian culture we’ve created, you don’t say that you’re not okay. We don’t share how we’re actually doing, because everyone is putting on an act. And you can’t let people in that deep. So I was like, really refreshed by your honesty. So why don’t you tell the listeners of the podcast just real quickly, maybe 30 seconds or less? What happened to you in Chicago? And how you felt kind of just coming back home to Monterey? Yeah.
Sam Salerno 05:43 You know, as you said, I’m a student at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, and I’ve been there the last two and a half years. This last fall semester, was kind of when that crash just, I just got hit really hard with depression and anxiety. And it just kind of came to the point where I was just, I was so stressed out that it started affecting my physical health. And as the semester went on, I started having panic attacks, I found myself being really depressed. And, and God was just, it totally just my life just turned around. By the end of the semester, I actually made the decision that I wasn’t going to be able to go back to school in spring. And there’s just a really hard decision. So that’s kind of where I’m at.
Alex Enfiedjian 06:29 Yeah, and you probably felt like a failure. You’re like, what the heck is wrong with me? Like, I’m a Bible student, I’m a worship leader. I write I’m like, I’ve always loved God, like, I shouldn’t be struggling with this stuff. Why am I depressed? Why am I anxious? Why you probably felt like a loser, you know? And yeah. And so when you came home, you know, and everyone’s asking you, why are you home? Yeah, you could hide that and be like, Well, you know, I just needed to, because that’s what we do in the churches, we hide our sin and our brokenness, which is stupid, and it makes me angry. But But you could have you could have like, made up reasons or told me Hey, oh, yeah, I just whatever, but you just were straight up honest with me. Like, I’m not doing good. I’m depressed. I’m having anxiety. What made you share honestly, like, here’s the question, were you always that honest with others about your struggles? Or did that kind of transparency come after God had truly shown you your weakness and your frailty? Well, I,
Sam Salerno 07:30 I grew up in the church, I grew up in a Christian school grew up Christian home. And it’s, I consider both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because I was just raised, knowing the Lord. And it’s just, it was awesome. And I, I’m, I thank God for it every day, because I have a lot of friends that didn’t get to be raised like that. At the same time, though. Just, there’s always this. I feel like a pressure to perform almost a pressure to have that good face of everything. I’ve got everything together. I love the Lord. I’m doing worship. I’m involved in leadership. I’m at school. I never struggle. I never struggle. Yeah. And it came last semester, it came to the point where I literally came after the openness and honesty came when I hit my ultimate low where I was just to be honest, I was feeling suicidal, I was having suicidal thoughts. And that’s when I realized, just in my brokenness, there’s no possible way that I could go, being on my own. There’s no possible way that I could make it without the Lord. There’s no possible way I can make it without my friends or my roommates. And it came to the point where I just started saying, you know what, I’m just gonna start being honest. And when people ask me how I was doing, if they if I knew they had like, five minutes of time, I’d say, Hey, you know what, I’m I’m things aren’t good right now. And it was people were surprised. But there were also very appreciative of just the sincerity and, and genuineness and authenticity. Yeah,
Alex Enfiedjian 08:57 yeah, I think, you know, the honesty, like you said, came after you hit the bottom and you realized, Oh, my gosh, I, I am weak. I don’t have this together. And I need people to come alongside of me, and help me. And I think everyone who’s listening, whether they’re a worship leader, or like a worship team member, everyone who stands on the stage understands that, that tension, they felt that tension of not feeling worthy. Like, gosh, I’m supposed to be a leader. How could I struggle with this? I’m supposed to be an example to all these people like, right? So I’m just going to suck it up and fight it with my own strength and put on an act until I figure this out on my own. Until I, I’m going to pretend until I have it all together, right? Why do you think that leaders worship leaders or worship team members? Why do you feel like they can’t be real, that they aren’t really allowed to show where they’re truly at in their life? What causes that lack of transparency?
Sam Salerno 09:56 I think it’s not just for leaders. It’s for everyone. nobody really wants To show weakness, no one wants to be seen as like reliant on somebody else. And it’s kind of I guess it’s kind of the culture we all have grown up in is a church culture and also an American culture that you don’t want to be seen as having to be reliant on someone. And I think, especially for church leaders, I think it’s, there’s that pressure of, oh, you’re in leadership, you are leading the church and worship, you are leading the church from the pastor. And you should have this together, because how can you lead other broken people? If if, you know, if you’re broken yourself? And it’s just a pressure, I think,
Alex Enfiedjian 10:38 yeah, it’s like that, that strange. Thought of like insecurity, like, if they really know, the thoughts that I thought, or the way that I talked to my spouse, or the way that I neglected my family, or if they really knew me, like, I would be disqualified. Like, they wouldn’t let me on the stage. Right? It’s that it’s in a sense, it’s Satan, whispering pretend, just pretend that you’ve got it together, be self righteous, you know, put on the Act, which is exactly what Jesus like, criticize most harshly, right, which is the actors, the hypocrites, the Pharisees who had it all together on the outside or pretended they had it all together. but inside they were, you know, rotten bones. And they call them whitewash to whitewash, Tim. So, I’ve just decided, like, you know what, I’m okay. with other people knowing that I’m not okay. You know, and that’s where I think you’re at, too. Yeah. Which, you know, the whole faking it thing is really like, diametrically opposed to the kingdom of God. Because we’re supposed to boast in our weakness, right? We’re not supposed to like, think we’ve got it together or show people that we’re strong, we’re actually supposed to boast in our weakness, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. This is First Corinthians 12. And then for the sake of Christ, then I’m content with weakness, insults, hardships, prosecutions calamities for when I am weak, then I am strong. Right? Right. So when we realize our brokenness, it like becomes about God. And not about me trying to prove, you know, to people that I’m cool,
Sam Salerno 12:19 yet I’m good. Yeah. And it’s in realizing a weakness that God really can shine through, you know, there’s no way that I can do some of the things that I was planning on doing. If God doesn’t come in, if he doesn’t step into my life and actually work through me.
Alex Enfiedjian 12:32 Yeah, now, it’s like, God has to get the gallery because you know, you there’s no possible way like he either has to be there, or I’m going to, I’m going to fall. Yeah. And there’s this quote that I’m reading this book called humility right now, by Andrew Murray,
Alex Enfiedjian 12:47 or marae.
Alex Enfiedjian 12:48 I’m not sure how to say it. But it says, This is the true self denial to which our Savior calls us the acknowledgement that self has nothing good in it, except that it’s an empty vessel for God to fill. And that’s what we’re saying, right? It’s like, I really am nothing. except God can now be good through me, because like, I realized that I really have nothing good in myself. Right. So I don’t know. Do you have any other thoughts just on brokenness as a leader or as a worship team member? Like? What would you I don’t know, what would you say just to the worship leaders or the worship team members listening? regarding their brokenness, and or maybe they’re, maybe they don’t see their brokenness yet, maybe they haven’t quite experienced the depth of their brokenness.
Sam Salerno 13:35 I would you say, don’t be afraid to embrace it. It’s one of the things that I learned early on in depression and anxiety was I was always trying to fight I was trying to fix it, make it better on my own power. And it wasn’t until I embraced like, Hey, I’m really I’m really struggling. And it wasn’t until I told my friends, you know, it wasn’t until I actually held on to and said, You know, this is an issue that I need to bring into the light, that I actually started receiving healing, I started receiving more hope, more joy, because when you keep it all bottled up inside and you’re, you’re, you’re not going to receive the joy that Christ promises really, when it comes to being in a body of believers in that that’s promised in Scripture over and over and over again, when it comes down to just being open and honest and living in community and fellowship and allowing people to know where you’re at allowing people to pray for you. And really, that’s allowing the gospel to be seen. Christ coming down and dying for us while we were in the depth of our sin. He didn’t come down to save, clean, put together people the, you know, the sick people are in need of doctors, not the healthy ones. He came down to save people that were that were broken. And when you truly realize you’re broken, I think that’s really when the gospel can be seen. And when it comes for worship, leading worship, I think that when you realize you’re broken The songs you’re singing are going to become a million times more real. I just think of the song Amazing Grace, which has been going through my head over and over. And we actually played this last year you let it lie, let it I didn’t even ask delete it. And it’s something that you know, Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me like, holy cow, you can’t sing that song and not be drawn closer to Christ when you realize how much he’s loved you.
Unknown Speaker 15:27 Yeah, but that only happens when you actually understand your brokenness, because if you think you have it all together, you then it’s not amazing grace, it’s just it’s amazing earned something, I have it together how sweet the sound? Everyone’s looking at me.
Alex Enfiedjian 15:41 It’s Yeah, it’s not. And it’s like you said it’s about us, instead of about God. Whereas when we admit our brokenness, not not just to God, but to others, then it becomes it’s, I’m not good. But God is good, right? I’m a wretch. But God is good, right. And I think what you said, just for worship teams listening is like, we need to start being authentic with where we’re at with each other. Like, if you’re the leader, if you start sharing, and if you start creating a culture of openness, and transparency and authenticity with where you’re at, and where you’re struggling, your team is going to catch on. And then when your team starts worshiping Jesus for what he’s worth, because he’s good, and they’re not, then the church is going to catch on. And that same spirit of authenticity and realizing that, you know, we don’t have to have it all together, that’s gonna permeate the congregation too. So it’s like a really, it really is a ripple down revival effect. But it starts with us, like, being okay with sharing that we’re not
Sam Salerno 16:41 okay. Yeah, and you know, quick story just was, I was able to share with the guys on my floor was able to share a lot of the weakness that I was having during this last semester. And I cannot tell you how sweet of a time it was. When guys are saying, you know, I struggle with the exact same thing. And I didn’t, I don’t want to admit it. We had the sweetest times of prayer in the club, I cannot tell you how close you just feel to the Lord, when everyone’s on their face, just realizing how how broken they are. Some of the sweetest times of worship, sweetest times of prayer, sweetest times of just fellowship were had when everyone is just honest and open and and we’re able to see Christ more for who he is the truly good God that he is. Only after we were all able to share. Yeah, so it’s just to prove your point. You know, it’s a ripple down thing.
Alex Enfiedjian 17:35 Yeah. And I hiding is like exactly what Adam did in the garden. Like, you know, like, as soon as sin came in, and he was scared, and fear, fear of what others think about us fear of what our congregation might think about us fear about what our leaders might think about us. Fear causes us to hide. And that’s exactly what happened with Adam. But But hiding breaks intimacy. And what you just said is like, when, when you all shared truly what you guys were like, where you were at, and what you’re feeling and where you were struggling, like you guys all got closer, and I’m experiencing that with my wife, like we’re being totally honest and open and transparent with each other. And we’ve never had a sweeter sense of closeness and intimacy and love. It’s like, true, like true love. And true gospel, love is being fully known. And being fully accepted. Right, right. And the thing is, we’re afraid to let ourselves be fully known because we think we’re the only one struggling
Alex Enfiedjian 18:41 with something.
Alex Enfiedjian 18:42 But really, when you let it out of the bag, everyone else is like, Oh, me, too. I’m so glad you said that. Because that’s exactly what I’m struggling with, too.
Sam Salerno 18:52 Yeah, even more. So if you can’t have 500 people at church or 1000 people at church and not have somebody that’s struggling with the same thing you’re going through, right. And you know, you won’t know that person until you’re open and honest. And there’s, there’s definitely safe places to do that. It’s not like you should just go around and throw your sin on everybody and just say, Hey, this is what I’m going through. This is what I’m struggling with. But there’s a call that we need to be open and we need to be honest. And it’s only when you do that you’ll be really be able to accept the gospel for yourself, and also help others around. You see the power of God working through you.
Alex Enfiedjian 19:28 Yeah, and I just want to read two more verses before we move on from the topic of brokenness. As worship leaders and worship team members, like we always think about worship and worship and what it says that God desires in our worship is a broken and contrite heart. the sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, that Psalm 51 he does not he does not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it he is not pleased with burnt offerings, but the sacrifices of God are a broken spirit. A broken and contrite heart, oh god, you will not despise. And then I think about like, Matthew five, where he says, Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. These are not people who have it together, right? They’re not people who think they have it together. If you want to be part of the kingdom of God, you have to be broken. Yeah. Or you have to at least know always know that you’re you are broken, it’s Yes, if they know that you’re broken. And it’d be like, except I can’t do this on my own. And that’s where I think true humility comes from, which is why you were able to come to me and say, You know what, I’m not doing good right now. You’re honest, because you had nothing to lose? You know, I mean, you had already lost it all. Like, yeah, you had, you had to ditch your plans to go to finish school, you did come back home to your parents house. And it’s like, you’d already lost it all. So you had nothing else to lose. So you could be totally transparent, because because humility is when we fully understand our weakness and brokenness, and we stop pretending, you know, we just stop pretending that we have it all together. And if you think about it, humility comes from the exact same word root as humiliation. And so humiliation is where you’re so embarrassed, you’re like, so laid low, that there’s nothing left to prove. Yeah, you know, it’s like, I don’t have to, like, try to make other people think I haven’t together. Like, I have nothing to prove, like, I’ve already been fully exposed. You know, I mean,
Sam Salerno 21:28 I mean, it goes, it goes back to broken. So humility is the next thing that follows. When you realize you don’t have it together, a lot of people think, Oh, I have to be more humble. I have to, you know, humility is seen as like something to attain to. And really, I think humility doesn’t come when you don’t work to become more humble. I think it just humility comes when you realize where you’re at. In reality, we’re all broken reality. We’re all sinners, we’re all in need of a Savior. And I don’t think it’s you can’t truly be humble until you realize that even saying, that can be a point of pride. And like, you don’t want to be like, Oh, I’m humble
Alex Enfiedjian 22:02 now, because I’ve reached that point, because that goes back to it points to you. Yeah, whereas true humility, like, there’s nothing to point to here. I’ve been like, completely emptied on myself. And the only one who I can point to at all is God at this point. Like, if anything is good in me, it is not from me, it’s from him. See, I have two more questions that just to ask, like, if we all started doing this, and living the way that you and I are starting to feel? How do you think that will change the church, the global church or or a local congregation? How would it change the church if the leaders of the church started just being real and authentic?
Sam Salerno 22:41 I think, you know, you said it earlier, you mentioned a ripple down effect, kind of when a leader comes forward in his team, and says, You know what, you know, I’ve just come to this point where I realized my brokenness, and I realized my reliance on the Lord. There’s truly a ripple down trickle down effect, where people can just truly see the gospel. And I think that if, if we really want to see the Lord work in his church, I think we have to start saying, you know what, the church isn’t perfect. We don’t have it together. But we are loved by a God that has called us to himself and desires relationship with us amidst our brokenness. And he promises to redeem us. And he’s sanctifying us. And I think that’s going to be so appealing, because I think a lot of non believers look at the church and see, that’s where all the good people go. And they don’t want to be in church, because they feel this isn’t the place for me. I’m, I’m broken, and I see myself they can see their own brokenness. And they’re surrounded by people that are afraid to admit that they’re, that they’re broken. So I think first, you know, if a leader steps up and admits brokenness, I think it’s going to trickle down to the team. The team is going to start leading the church in a way that really encourages openness when it comes to sin when it comes to struggle. And people are going to start seeing that that’s a church that is a lot of broken people. But they have something going on that is, you know, beyond words, but their God is good, but their God is good. They are broken, but they’re guys that their God is good. And if they’re saying all the power and glory is going to God, like I want to know this God. I really think that’s where it’s that’s where the gospel comes alive for most people, is when they see God’s power moving in ways that they can’t explain.
Alex Enfiedjian 24:35 Dude, I think we should end the podcast right here. And we should pray right now for God to do a mighty work in all of us to be open and honest and humble and transparent. Let’s, if you’re cool with it, everybody who’s listening, we’re gonna pray. Let’s pray. God, thank you for showing us our need for you and our depravity and our wickedness. Thanks for showing us That we can’t do it in our own strength and we don’t have it all together and we truly are just like so messed up so much more messed up than we even want to admit. And thank you for your grace, thank you for rescuing us. Thank you for Jesus, taking our sin and the punishment of our sin on his shoulders. We need you I pray that you would cause a revival in my heart, Sam’s heart, our church, and all the churches of all the people who are listening to this podcast, cause a spirit of authenticity and transparency and humility, to spread like wildfire across the church of America, so that we can just stop putting on the act and start enjoying your your goodness and your grace. And so we love you. Thank you In Jesus name, amen. And then such great stuff in there. Thank you, Sam, for just helping us take a closer look at our hearts and realize that we need grace to we really do. I wanted to end this podcast episode by giving you six practical things that you can do for yourself, for your team, and for your church to help just breed a spirit of authenticity and honesty and humility in your congregations. So the first thing that I would recommend you do is to read the book dangerous calling by Paul Tripp. It’s a big, bright orange book. And it is so important if you are in ministry, full time ministry or even part time ministry. It is so easy for us to start going through the motions and to lose track of our heart and to lose track of our need for grace. It’s so easy to allow all the people in your church saying nice things about you make you actually believe nice things about you and and forget that you need grace to a lot of times in ministry, we can think that we’ve arrived, we know all the answers. Were there to help people. And so we can become numb to our own need for grace. And the book dangerous calling by Paul Tripp has just been rocking my world right now. Just showing me how distorted My own view of myself was so dangerous. Calling Paul Tripp, go buy it right now worth your money. That’s the first thing you can do. The second thing you can do. If you’re a worship leader, and you have a team, during your rehearsals, have a devotional time before you guys start playing. And during that devotional time, ask your team members how they’re doing. And listen. So what we do in our devotional time at Cypress is we we usually read through a psalm each week. But sometimes, before we read, I’ll just ask like each person, how you doing what’s going on in your life? Like, how are things going, in fact, this last Sunday, I asked my team members, how’s your private worship going of Jesus? Like, you know, how are you doing with that? And I told them, You know, I didn’t spend time, I was honest, I didn’t spend time worshiping Jesus this morning. Because I rushed out the door, and I’m feeling it. And then they were able to share Yeah, we’re not doing so great. So during your devotional time, before rehearsal, ask your team members how they are doing. And again, it’s good for you to start as the leader, and be honest with how you’re doing to get the ball rolling. And if you’re a team member, and your worship leader asks you how you’re doing, please answer authentically, you can help build this culture as well. So, during DeVos, ask your team members how they’re doing. The third thing you can do. And this is something we’ve tried to do, and we haven’t had a lot of success here. But I’ve sent out a monthly personal update email to my team. So I’ll, I’ll email the whole team. And I’ll say, Okay, here’s what’s going on in my life, here’s how you can be praying for me.
Alex Enfiedjian 29:11 Now, now, click reply all and use and you say the same thing. So it’s like, you know, two sentences or three sentences, what’s going on in your life, send the whole team, so we all know what’s going on in each other’s lives. And we can all be praying for each other and encouraging each other. Because life is hard. And we need we need each other to get through. So a monthly email update. And the reason I said I have varying degrees of success is because my team doesn’t always reply all and sometimes they don’t reply at all. So, but try it if it’ll help try it. The fourth thing you can do as a leader is to pick songs of lament and confession for your congregation. Like we don’t always need to sing. Oh, happy Be Day Happy Day. You know, like we can sing songs that are our songs of despair, that are crying out songs that are talking about the struggle. I think of songs like Matt Redmond’s, how does it go even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. You never let go, you know, through the calm through the storm, you never let go. So pick songs of confession, and of lament songs that talk about the hard times, as well as the good times because honestly, most of the people sitting in the pews are going through a hard time. So don’t just sing happy songs, sing songs that confess our need for Christ. For example, Matt Maher’s song, Lord, I need you is another great song, you know, of confession, and repentance, and asking God to help us get through each moment of each day. So number four, pick songs of lament and confession for your congregation. Number five, build times of confession into the service, build times of confession into the service. So what this might look like is in between songs, like let’s say you play the song by Matt Maher, Lord, I need you. Then at the end of that song, just build a time where you say, guys, we all need grace. So right now, just take two minutes or a minute or 30 seconds to reflect on your life and ask God for forgiveness in the areas that you know, you have failed, and let him down. So build times of confession into the service and as the leader, if you’re praying, you should you should be okay with asking for forgiveness in front of the church. You know, God forgive me for for not putting you first God, forgive me for having so many idols that I chase after and put above you, God, forgive me, I’m sorry, I want to follow you give me the strength to follow you. If you pray that prayer as a leader gives the congregation permission to also confess and repent during the singing time and the worship time. Then the last one, is, I think, probably the most important this is the sixth way to help build authenticity. Have someone who you can confess your sin to have someone that you trust who you can be completely honest with, like 100% honest, not 80% honest or 85% honest or, or tell them 90% of your sin. Now you need someone who you can tell 100% of your sin to someone who can see all of your ugliness. And who can say Christ forgives you.
Alex Enfiedjian 32:57 Make confession to God and to someone else, a regular part of your life. One thing I’m learning is the power of confession. There is massive power in confession. So when I go to someone, I have a friend that I talked to, and I talked to my wife, and I say, look, this is where I failed the Lord. Or this is an area where I feel my heart wandering. When I say that, it reminds me that I’m weak. It reminds me that I need Jesus, He reminds me that I’m desperate for him. And I’m desperate for other people to help me make it to heaven. When we don’t confess, then we start to think we can do it in our own strength. Confession proves that you can’t do it. It reminds you that you can’t do it. And that gives you the power to walk forward in purity, and in holiness and godliness. There’s just something crazy that happens when you admit that you’re a sinner. And when someone pronounces Christ’s forgiveness upon you, and you say, wow. So make confession, a regular part of your life. We need to be reminded of our own weakness and our own sin, so that we don’t start to think too highly of ourselves and get prideful. And then we stop being authentic and real and humble. So those are the six things that I would encourage you to try doing with your teams and with your churches, to build authenticity, into the fabric of your church’s culture. Let’s be a church that worships Jesus because we are broken, but he is faithful. We are wretched, but he is good. So I pray that this Sunday as you lead, that you would lead with an authentic spirit and heart that is true to all people and is honest with all people and with the Lord. And that you would just know that you are fully loved and full accepted in Christ so god bless you as you lead. Point your people to the great