God gave us bodies to use as tools to worship him and serve others. As worship leaders who stand on the platform, our body language can either be a help or a hindrance to those we are leading. Poor body language can distract and dissuade people from worship, while good body language can encourage and ignite worship in our congregants.

Often when we think of body language we think of raising our hands, keeping our eyes open, standing tall and being confident. While those are important aspects of good body language, one often overlooked area is our countenance. In other words, our facial expressions while leading worship. I know it can seem weird to be concerned about what our faces look like while we sing, but I have found that simply smiling while leading worship can help break down barriers and engage our congregations to worship God more fervently.

Those who look to the Lord are radiant. – Psalm 34:5

I am a naturally more serious person when I worship. Every few months I need to be reminded to loosen up and smile. Recently the reminder came from a congregant who kindly remarked that “everyone on stage looks so serious. Lighten up and have some fun!”

While worship is a serious and sacred endeavor, we are also called to rejoice and be glad in our salvation!


Here are four good reasons you should try smiling next time you lead worship: 

You Look Better

People are naturally more beautiful when they smile! It’s attractive. It draws people in. When you smile you look better, when you look better you feel better, and when you feel better you lead better. Smile and watch your confidence go up!

It Breaks Down Barriers

Grouchy people are scary. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to approach someone with a scowl on their face. Someone whose countenance is overly serious communicates “Not welcome!”. Conversely, a warm, natural smile puts people at ease. It says “I’m glad you’re here and I want to engage with you.” People come to church with all sorts of baggage, fears, and struggles. What they need when they walk into the room is to feel safe and welcomed. Smiling does just that.

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It’s Engaging

When people are having a good time, you can’t help but want to be a part! Ever walk by a circle of people laughing? It’s our natural tendency to want to head over there and find out what’s so funny. When we smile on stage, when our countenance is joyful and glad, it draws people in.

We Have Lots to Be Joyful About!

Finally, we should smile because we have so much to be joyful about! All the wrath of God has been poured out on Jesus, and He has nothing left for you but love! Christ’s death secured for us an eternal inheritance of infinite joy and pleasures forevermore. We have been adopted as heirs of the Universe and our Father works all things for our good! As Bob Kauflin says, “We should think about what we are singing and respond appropriately.” If the love of God shown to you in Christ doesn’t make you smile, what else could?

Remember To Smile

So, next time you step on stage, remember to smile. Think about the words you are singing and rejoice! Let the gladness in your heart change the countenance on your face. I promise smiling during your next worship set as you sing the good news of the gospel will help you do a better job leading your church.

Also See: 6 Tips to Improve Your Stage Presence