Think about someone you know personally who is a more talented worship leader than you.

See that person’s face in your mind. Hear that person singing and playing. Think about how successful he or she is at leading worship.

Now, put all of that out of your mind because I have a secret to tell you:

Your success isn’t based on how talented you are, nor can it be measured by anything you do or don’t do outwardly.

You are successful because you are loved by God and you are seeking to walk in obedience to what He’s asked you to do.

Your success isn’t based on how talented you are, nor can it be measured by anything you do or don’t do outwardly. Click To Tweet

When your success meter is based upon this reality, nothing else matters. No other measurement of success is valid. No one can take away your success or name you a failure. You won’t find anything about results in this definition of success. We are so results-oriented that this comes as a surprise as much as a relief.

Just as your success cannot be quantified by your own achievements, neither can you use the achievements of others as the standard for measuring your success. When you begin to realize that success is very simply being loved and seeking to be obedient, you will see how irrelevant both your own accomplishments and the accomplishments of others are to your life.

I love striving to be the best in my craft and I think that it is a noble and even a godly desire to pursue excellence. But along with that pursuit must come a great knowing of the truth that my success isn’t based on how good I am compared to someone else, or how “externally successful” I may look to myself or others.

Just as your success cannot be quantified by your own achievements, neither can you use the achievements of others as the standard for measuring your success. Click To Tweet

Let me say it again: your success comes from being obedient to God’s voice and walking out what He’s asked you to do.

When God asked Jonah to go to Nineveh and preach, if not one single person had repented, Jonah would still have been successful in the eyes of God, because he was faithful to walk out what God asked him to do.

When God told Moses to speak to Pharaoh and tell him to let the Israelites go, Pharaoh resisted his words ten times. But Moses was successful in heaven’s eyes every single time because he was walking in obedience.

God had Jesus wait 30 years before He started any kind of public ministry and yet the Father audibly declared after His baptism, This is My son and I am well pleased with Him. Jesus hadn’t healed anyone or done one miracle that we know of up to this point. What in the world had He done outwardly that would make the Father call Him successful? It wasn’t the fruit of Jesus’ life that the Father was looking at, but at the life itself. He alone knows when our hearts are reaching for obedience.

Your success comes from being obedient to God’s voice and walking out what He’s asked you to do. Click To Tweet

We could go on and on looking at men and women in the Bible whose “success” wasn’t determined or accompanied by the praises of man. The heroes of our faith were successful because of an internal setting of their hearts to say yes to God no matter what it looked like.

More than likely, there will always be a worship leader with a better voice, greater abilities, and a more impressive resume than yours. Remember that your success is not conditional upon someone else’s failure. We are a body and to function together the way God intended, we all need to be doing our parts (1 Corinthians 12:14-27). When we truly understand this, we realize that the success of others is something to sincerely celebrate and our hearts are freed up to do just that.

The Biblical heroes of our faith were successful because of an internal setting of their hearts to say yes to God no matter what it looked like. Click To Tweet

Therefore, when something incredible happens during another team’s worship time, don’t be upset that it wasn’t while you were leading. Rejoice in what God is doing and remember that it’s not because that team is better than yours. Every worship leader is at a different point in the journey and God has a plan and purpose for each of us. You can touch His heart like no one else, so don’t get distracted or discouraged by how well you think others are doing.

Comparison invites us to evaluate the success of others based on what we see with our eyes when the Word of God tells us that He looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7). We need to keep our eyes on the One who sets the only true standard of success and realize that we each have a unique role and purpose that only we can fulfill.

When God asked Jonah to go to Nineveh and preach, if not one single person had repented, Jonah would still have been successful in the eyes of God, because he was faithful to walk out what God asked him to do. Click To Tweet

I’ll be talking a lot more about comparison and what makes you a successful worship leader in my upcoming class, Becoming a More Confident Worship Leader: How to Silence Your Inner Critic and Lead Without Fear. Click here for more information regarding this class.

I’d love to hear what your experience has been in evaluating success in yourselves and others. Please share your comments below.

Huge thanks to my friend Jordan Vanderplate for letting me use this photo from Pahoa, Hawaii. Check out more of his work here.


I’m Justin Rizzo. I enable worship leaders who feel isolated, overworked, and unfocused to experience peace, confidence and create thriving worship communities.







I’m Still Saying Yes (Spontaneous)



2 comments

  1. Keli Burwell

    Great article! This is in tune with the advice you provided me a few months ago above the Love of God and going forth without fear. You truly ministered that to me and it has helped a great deal since! With each time I have to lead, I am resting more and more and trying not to be over-critical of myself. – I love how you tied obedience here. Keeping this at the forefront of my mind will keep me encouraged to keep going in what I am called to do…Thanks so much & God Bless!

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