I understand the pastor’s role within a given church but what is the proper relationship between a worship leader and congregation?
First, the worship leader should be seen as a leader in the congregation. Of course this is not on the same level as the senior pastor. Nevertheless, it is still a leadership position. Many congregations view this person as an assistant pastor.
The worship leader should be officially set in place (1 Chronicles 16:4-7; 25:1). His authority—especially as it pertains to worship—should be defined and recognized.
The worship leader, in turn, should be totally committed to leading the people in worship in spirit and truth (John 4:23). His heart should be to encourage and help this group of believers to move on in the area of worship. A primary motivation should be to see the people wholeheartedly honoring God with all that they are and have.
The worship leader’s interaction with the people should be handled carefully. Although a loving, caring relationship should be cherished, too many compliments can prove difficult to handle. Even a humble person can have his ego inflated by too much praise. The worship leader must learn to allow honor to pass through him and on to God.
On the other hand, opposition from congregational members can be very destructive. Opposition usually comes in the form of stylistic disagreements. Specifically, someone doesn’t like the way certain things are done (i.e. “It was too loud today,” or “We never sing my favorite song, Drop-kick Me Jesus Over the Goal-posts of Life,” etc.). Unfortunately, even though these items are usually based solely on opinion, they can still be very divisive. The worship leader should hear the person out and consider what he is saying. If the problem is serious enough, perhaps the pastor will need to mediate. In any event, don’t let a minority voice of opposition harm your relationship with the congregation.
Always maintain love-motivated relationships. In doing this you will be well on your way to finding the ideal relationship God has for you and your congregation.