Archives For Stefanie Cassetto

Ebb Flow

There is an ebb and flow to ministry life. We can quickly go from weeks that are jam-packed with meetings and multiple events, to the regular rhythm of planning and preparing for weekend services. And while the pace of ministry can sometimes be unpredictable, the presence of people is not. Our team, our volunteers, our family, our friends – they are with us through thick and thin. How we react and respond to the people around us during the extraordinary seasons of ministry says a lot about our leadership. One thing is sure:

We are in constant need of God’s grace.

There is so much joy that comes with leading others. But sometimes the leadership seat can be challenging and lonely. Remaining mindful of who we are in the light of God’s grace gives so much courage and direction when it comes to leading those around us. Here are five quick reminders of how God gently guides us with his kindness and grace:

When you don’t have the strength, God fills in the gaps.

“My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9).

When you make a mistake, God…

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This year my husband, John, and I are celebrating 20 years in full-time ministry. Twenty years! (Cue the confetti and horn blowers!) During those years we have had the joy of serving on staff at churches in New England and in Southern California. While the places look nothing like each other from the outside, I have found that the experiences are similar in many ways. Building bridges and a culture of love is always in style. There is joy in collaborating with a team, and there is tension when leading through change. Watching people walk through the doors of your church for the first time never gets old, and it is thrilling to step out of your comfort zone and into a new part of the world with the Gospel.

In New Hampshire, I learned about The PEACE Plan for the first time. Our church took teams to Rwanda regularly. We saw ordinary people with ordinary giftings become a part of something so much bigger than themselves or their region. My husband and I went on PEACE trips to Rwanda with our church on the East Coast and then…

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As worship ministry leaders, we are responsible for the many details of a weekend service. We are always balancing the demands of creating an environment where people can find Jesus and express their love for him while leading our teams well without leaving them in the wake of last-minute changes. When we own the weekend, lead the way, and listen to the Spirit, we build an atmosphere where our teams feel confident, equipped, and valued.

Own the weekend

A well-ordered plan allows room for generosity, freedom, and ample opportunity to show the love of Jesus.

  • Know the plan. Whether you are on the platform or behind the scenes, know the details of your service, songs, and stage. Communicate from your heart and confidently share what you know with open hands.
  • Know the people. See every person as a friend and co-laborer in Christ. Make sure your team feels valued for who they are beyond their contribution as a vocalist, stage manager, or band member.
  • Know the solutions. Anticipate problems and troubleshoot ahead of time. Leaders who stand on the solution side of a problem and are willing to reach back with a…

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No one likes to hear the word no. It is one of the quickest ways to close a door on an idea, a relationship, or a possible partnership in ministry. A quick no can squash enthusiasm, plant a seed of resentment, or make a person feel devalued. The best way to avoid these culture destroyers is to lead with a yes.

As worship leaders or creative contributors, what we do is almost always under a microscope. It’s not an easy job to balance the opinions (good or bad) of our pastors, teammates, and church congregation with what God has called us to do. The weekend worship experience can draw out strong opinions from the meekest of church attendees; planning services and events require passionate creativity, and implementing new processes can stretch even the most flexible of team members. The number of ways a worship ministry hears the thoughts and ideas of others are endless. And honestly, sometimes answers like “that will never work,” “no, we are not turning the volume down,” or “we can’t do it that way” are easiest when you are on the spot. However, easiest isn’t always best. The harder conversation…

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