Interview with Tim Williams
Tell us about yourself and your musical journey?
I'm originally from Birmingham, but I'm currently the Worship Pastor at Elim Yeovil where I live with my wife Bec, son Harvey and our daughter Alexa who was born in September.
I grew up in church and in a musical family in general. My mum was a piano teacher, so from an early age I was playing instruments - starting with piano, then drums and then later guitar. However, it wasn't until I was 16 or 17 that I really started taking music and, then soon after, worship leading seriously.
You did the worship Central Course a few years ago. If you could share one piece of advice from this time what would it be?
The Worship Central Academy was one of the most incredible and inspiring years of my life. I learnt and grew so much in such a short space of time it was unreal. The team at Holy Trinity Brompton are fantastic and were so encouraging.
That time was really exciting, but it was also incredibly challenging. I had this crashing realisation that I had so much to learn.
Initially, this scared me and I think I mentally took a step back and thought that maybe this wasn't for me. But it wasn't long until I realised that I just had to get back up and push myself. That is the one bit of advice that I would give to anyone from that year.
Sometimes you need to be out of your depth in order to grow - and it is an amazing thing to be surrounded by people who are just so much better and more experienced than you - you learn a lot more! I think it was Mark Pugh who once said to me: "If you find that you are in a room where you are the best at what you do - it's time to find yourself another room." That really spoke to me, and even now I am constantly trying to surround myself with people who are much further down the journey than I am.
You worked with Sam Blake for a year. How was that?
A complete nightmare! No, I joke, it was a great year. Getting to work with someone like Sam is incredible. Sam really took me under his wing that year and was very intentional about sowing into my life. If he was ever doing a conference or an event he would always try to take me along - this meant that once more I was met with plenty of times where I felt completely out of my depth - but I wouldn't have wanted to be anywhere else.
In fact, one of my biggest memories of that year was leading up to Elim Bible Week. Sam had invited me to be on team, to play acoustic guitar and do a little bit of worship leading. I saw this as a great privilege and honour! But that wasn't the memory that I hold - this one happened about 2 months before that.
I can remember we were at a conference centre leading worship at an event and we were having an honest conversation about how I thought it was going. And truthfully, I had realised how out of my depth, and out of practice on my guitar I was! And I remember Sam just saying something along the lines of "Yeah, it definitely needs improving, how about you practice everyday between now and Elim Bible Week and if you haven't improved by the time we get there then you don't get to play?"
It might have felt a bit harsh, and at the time I remember panicking, but it was just the kick I needed to remember that actually the gifts we have are given by God which is amazing, but it is our job to invest in them and grow those talents!
This year you led at the Elim Leaders Summit. How was that for you?
Leading at the Leaders Summit was fantastic. I always love working with you guys, and I find that I come away every time having grown so much. It felt like this year Elim Sound had taken a real step up in general this year, and it was great getting to be a part of that.
What are your top 3 songs to use in corporate worship at the moment?
Great question! They would have to be:
Great Are You Lord by All Sons and Daughters. I love the lyric "it's Your breath in our lungs, so we pour out our praise", feels so fresh. And the bridge just flies!
O Praise The Name (Anastasis) by Hillsong. This song has a real hymnal format with a powerful chorus. Because of this we've found that this works incredibly well with both young and old.
Blessed Assurance. I'm loving using this song at the moment, I particularly like Elevation Worship's version. Again, a great one for all generations.
Questions: What are your current top songs used in corporate worship? Leave a comment below.