Three Reasons So Many Creatives Have Side Jobs


Many worship leaders and creative leaders I know have more than one job. What about you?

For starters, there are many part-time paid worship leader roles that allow someone who has a regular day job to serve a congregation on the weekends. This comprises a large chunk of the paid roles for musicians and leaders. Depending the style, size and budget for the church, this allows for many different people to serve in this specialized ministry. And it’s not just music – it can be other creative roles as well – such as audio, visual, graphics, social media, video or other ministry role in the creative realm.

Many people I know who serve in full time “arts” ministry within the church also have a couple of other irons in the fire. Often, thinking in terms of gigs, even if you don’t have more than one steady job on a regular basis, there are often opportunities to serve in various aspects as a musician. I don’t typically refer to ministry roles, especially leading worship as a gig, but I understand the concept. Any opportunity you have to make money using your craft is a good gig. It can also be a great ministry opportunity as well – to be a witness as you are serving.

So what about you? Do you have a side job going?

For me, I serve in part-time worship leadership and I also lead Harvest Ministry. I’ve been living in this arrangement for over twenty years and I find the balance between the two to be refreshing and invigorating. Along with Harvest Ministry, I have the opportunity to record podcasts, write in blogs and in general add some creative ministry components to my schedule on a regular basis.

Lately, I’ve been having conversations with various worship leaders and it seems like lots of people in the creative ministry realm relate to this.

Here are possible reasons for having more than one job is so prevalent in the arts world:


If you are a musician (or own a sound system or create videos, etc.) you are probably called upon by friends to participate in various events. As a result, though you may not call it a business, you get all kinds of side jobs singing for weddings, creating videos for family events, etc. Everyone love to have a friend who can play a little music for something. It’s always fun!

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In addition to your regular ministry role, you may sense a need for other creative outlets. Again, this may provide income or it may just be a hobby – but it’s an opportunity to use your skills and gifts. The options for these side creative outlets are endless – from recording music to writing to photography. Very often, these things can produce some income, but they also add value to life, often sharpening and enhancing the ministry role and church in which you serve.


The need for extra income is a powerful motivator when you are serving in ministry. Though there may not be tons of money in your official ministry role, the calling is still important. And then God has gifted you with creative aspects of life that may also be able to help produce extra income to make it all work. Again, I’ve seen this play out in numerous ways – from giving music lessons to serving in two different roles such as teaching and church music, or by producing music and videos that people purchase. There are many ways for creative church staff to add income to their lives through their gifts and abilities.

It can be a blessing for the church to have someone serve on staff who also is planted in other ministry areas and has other income.

What advice do you have for people serving in one job but having side jobs?