I recently had the pleasure of chatting with Paul Baloche about life, ministry, and his new worship album. Here is a portion of that interview.
All About Worship: You’ve led worship around the world, recorded many albums, written many songs, and helped so many people with your training. Is there any one of those that is more your passion than the others?
Paul: I do love the training, equipping, and the encouraging of leaders, especially next generation leaders. So it’s Pastoral. I always feel like more of a pastor anyway. It’s not like I’m an amazing singer anyway. I’m good enough to lead worship and I’m really glad I get to do a project. Those are all wonderful.
All About Worship: Has that changed over time?
Paul: It’s almost like the process of breathing. There is an inhale and an exhale. It feels like the leading worship, the prayer, the preparation, and the leading is like an inhale. Then your lungs expel the air and then out comes new songs, training, and ministry. You kind of can’t have the one without the other. You can’t exhale all the time. I can’t see myself not leading worship because to me it’s where the best songs begin. You’re not trying to write a clever song but you’re just worshiping God and then, in the midst of worship, out of your mouth comes a line that sounds sincere. You say, “Hey that’s worth spending some time with and seeing if a song might arise.”
All About Worship: Would you say there is a key to your relevance and longevity of ministry?
Paul: Adapt or die: musically and spiritually! Just having your natural and spiritual ear to the wind to discern when things are changing. I would say that in the last 5 years I’m just paying attention to the 20 some-things, for one because my kids are that age. I’m looking for the things most of them resonate with and the things they have rejected in terms of their expression of worship. 20 some-things don’t have much patience for entertainment. They are not really looking to be entertained, in general. Though there will always be a percentage of people who are. They are looking for something authentic and transparent even if it doesn’t all look pretty and shinny. They would rather have the honesty. So I’m challenged by that and am trying to grow. Even in my spiritual life I want to continue to grow and adapt and not be stuck.
I’m having an open mind to the idea that what may have been effective in ministry before may not be as effective now. What might be a bit outdated could be worth being updated. I’m not saying that you got to be a 25 year old kid again and make a fool of yourself, but I’m saying just be open and pay attention.
Read my full interview with Paul at allaboutworship.com