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Church Sound: The Differences Between Golf & Production Work

Golf is just a game; our production work with church, not so much

By Gary Zandstra February 19, 2016

This article is provided by Gary

Several years ago, I golfed 18 holes on a tough course and shot 100.

If you know anything about me, you know that any day that I shoot 100 or less is cause for minor celebration. (In other words, it doesn’t happen very often.)

Now, I must add that the score included a mulligan (or two), and it was my first outing of the year (and hopefully not my last).

Now, if I were serious about breaking 100 on a regular basis, what would I do?

1) Study up: Learn a bit more about the mechanical elements of the game, like how to swing properly
2) Show up: Practice on a consistent basis
3) Listen up: Seek the advice of those who are better than me
4) Play up: Speaking of those better than me, play with those people as much as possible
5) Shut up: Close my mouth, never brag about my game, and camp on Point 3 with very open ears (and I can’t resist the pun – the proof is in the putting… sorry!)
6) Think up: Prepare and have a positive attitude that fosters always acting in confidence
7) Burn up: Keep alive the burning desire to constantly improve

You’re probably already making the mental jump of how this applies to your ministry and working with sound and other production.

Regardless, let’s review.

1) Study up: Stay current on what’s new, know your craft – and know it well! 
2) Show up: Be involved on a consistent basis in general, and don’t miss rehearsals thinking you can just pull it off on Sunday morning
3) Listen up: Absorb all of the relevant advice of those around you, and don’t discount their opinions about how you’re doing – good and not so good
4) Play up: I’ve touched on this before (playing out of my league) – when you’re around people more skilled and/or more dedicated, your own game improves
5) Shut up: Talk less, do more – our excellence shines in our actions, not our words
6) Think up: Use what we do well as the basis for accentuating the positive with all aspects of our role
7) Burn up: If you don’t have a “fire in your belly,” find a ministry that indeed lights that fire, or, resolve to help light the fire in your current situation

For me, golf is just a chance to get out with friends and enjoy the outdoors. Whether I play well or not is quickly forgotten both by me and my playing partners.

Because of that attitude, I end up playing to my weaknesses, but that’s O.K. – it’s just a game, after all, and one that I use for fun and socialization. 

Our ministries also should be fun and social, but there’s so much more to it, and it should (and does) mean so much more not only to me, but to many, many others.

So my question: Can you, do you, or should you approach ministry with the same attitude that I approach golf?

Gary Zandstra has worked in church production and as an AV systems integrator for more than 35 years. He’s also contributed numerous articles to ProSoundWeb over the past decade.

About Gary

Gary Zandstra
Gary Zandstra

Consultant, Dan Vos Construction, Writer for Worship Facilities and ProSoundWeb
Gary Zandstra has worked in church production and as an AV systems integrator for more than 35 years. He’s also contributed numerous articles to ProSoundWeb over the past decade.


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