The songs we learn in church shape both our musical and theological perspectives on what worship is and what it means for us to join into it. This is especially the case for young worship leaders, and that is why it is crucial to guide those who are cutting their teeth in your worship bands into things that will enable them (and those they lead) to grow into the kind of leaders the church, even your church, will need. So here’s nine basic but solid songs your young band should know, for their sake and those they will lead:
- How Great is Our God – Well known, simple in chord structure, and one of the few blatantly Trinitarian songs sung in modern worship circles these days. You may see it as overdone, but this song will be sung by the church far into the future.
- Beautiful – Phil Wickham’s simple, hymnic song about creation, salvation, and the coming kingdom teaches the biblical narrative in a chord structure that repeats throughout the song, making it very teachable to young musicians.
- Here I Am To Worship – Another familiar tune to many in the church, but its incarnational focus brings a lot to the theological table, especially in the season of Advent and Christmas.
- Give Us Clean Hands – Rooted in the Psalter, this confessional song provides an easy tune and chord structure for the needed practice of confession and restoration as part of our regular liturgical actions.
- Mighty To Save – Another four-chord wonder on the list, with emphasis on Christ’s power and victory shown through the resurrection, as well as a charge to the church to offer themselves as both living sacrifices and lights to the world.
- Your Grace is Enough – This tune has deep covenantal resonance, especially if you use Maher’s original lyrics (over Tomlin’s changes). While this song has a few more chords than others on this list, the emphasis on God’s sufficient grace and faithfulness proclaims needed truth in the congregation.
- Revelation Song – This song takes up the great hymns of Revelation, bringing both the eschaton and the testimony of the church into focus. Four chords, repetitive, and powerful.
- More Than Amazing – Lincoln Brewster’s tune uses lyrics from older hymns in this reframing of the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. A great narrative-driven song of awe and praise.
- Blessed Be Your Name – Themes of suffering, blessing, and God’s rule over all things come front and center in this song. The chord structure and lyrics are familiar to many, and the themes touch on a number of hard but needed topics of faith.