O Come, O Come Emmanuel – Sung Responsively with Alternating Scripture

O Come, O Come Emmanuel – Sung Responsively with Alternating Scripture

M: Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. – Isaiah 7:14 

Congregation Sings: O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.

Refrain: Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

M: On the morning of the third day there was thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast. Everyone in the camp trembled. – Exodus 19:16 

Congregation Sings: O come, O come, thou Lord of might, 
Who to thy tribes, on Sinai’s height,
In ancient times didst give the law
In cloud and majesty and awe.
Refrain

M: A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit. In that day the Root of Jesse will stand as a banner for the peoples; the nations will rally to him, and his resting place will be glorious. – Isaiah 11:1, 10
C: “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.” – Revelation 22:16

Congregation Sings: O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan’s tyranny;
From depths of hell Thy people save,
And give them victory over the grave.
Refrain

M: “I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near. A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel. – Numbers 24:17a
C: “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.” – Revelation 22:16

Congregation Sings: O come, Thou Day-spring, from on high,
And cheer us by thy drawing nigh;
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.
Refrain

M: I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. – Isaiah 22:22 
C: “To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write:These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. – Revelation 3:7

Congregation Sings: O come, Thou Key of David, come,
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.
Refrain

M: All this also comes from the Lord Almighty,whose plan is wonderful,whose wisdom is magnificent. – Isaiah 28:29
 
Congregation Sings: O come, Thou Wisdom from on high,
Who orderest all things mightily;
To us the path of knowledge show,
And teach us in her ways to go.
Refrain

M: I will shake all nations, and what is desired by all nations will come, and I will fill this house with glory,’ says the Lord Almighty. – Haggai 2:7
 
Congregation Sings: O come, Desire of nations, bind
In one the hearts of all mankind;
Bid Thou our sad divisions cease,
And be Thyself our King of Peace.
Refrain

Tuning Your Guitar in Worship

Invariably, it happens.  You brought your guitar in from the cold car and it warms up as you play it during the congregational opening song and goes out of tune. How do you retune it without being a distraction or drawing attention to yourself?

The easiest way, if you have a good ear, is to just tweak it into tune on the fly, during the song. If you are unable to do this, the best time that I have found to retune is to wait for a part of the service where the people are involved in a responsive reading because there is lots of joyful noise and the focus is on the reading and not the music.

There are also ways to tune a guitar that are relatively quiet. For an electric guitar, if you don’t have one already, get a chromatic tuning foot pedal. When you step on the pedal, it disconnects your guitar from the amp so that you can retune your instrument without even making a whisper of a sound.

It’s a little harder to quietly retune an acoustic guitar but not impossible. I have found that a tuner that clamps onto your headstock is sensitive enough to pick up your sound while just playing harmonic notes. Most guitarists know how to do this but if you are not familiar with this technique and by way of example you can retune the low E string by lightly touching the sixth string 12th fret (without making contact with the fret) and softly strum the string. Your light touch will mute the sound but the tuner will still pick it up through the instrument’s vibrations. You can then tune any of the other strings in the same way. Just play a harmonic of the open strings anywhere else on the fretboard.

You can find these digital tuners at your local music shop or check out Amazon, maybe they will be offering these on sale during their Black Friday Sale Days which actually start today (link below).

Shop Amazon – Black Friday Deals Week in Musical Instruments

While I am on the subject of guitars, have any of you tried using Red® Brand guitar strings? I used to only use Martin strings but I tried a few different brands lately and I really like the sound and the longevity of these Reds. They have a high copper content hence the name “Red”. You can read more at this link:

Red Brand – Acoustic Guitar Strings

The Pharisees

The Pharisees

I can’t go to the movies
Eat pork, when I dine
I can’t listen to country music
Or enjoy a glass of fine wine

It’s a sin to wear a Hawaiian shirt
It’s a sin to creatively “see “
Sometimes I think it’s a sin to breath
Or even to write this poetry

You see, these finger-pointing Christians
Are a species to behold
For they will rigidly pound you
Into their rusty old, self-made cookie mold

For they bind heavy burdens
As they lift themselves to exhibit
And to those who’d enter the kingdom
They actually tend to inhibit

And they observe specks of dust
With their judgmental sigh
But they don’t see the planks
Right there! In their own eye!

And they love to strain gnats
While camels, they do swallow
They put you into a strait jacket
And urge you to joyfully follow

But it’s all nailed to Jesus’ cross
According to God’s plan
The laws, the strivings, the judgments
Salvation is only through one man

For the Lord forgives our sins
But upon that one sin,
Oh they do dwell
Really come to think of it
The Pharisees are still alive and well.

Jesus’s Description of the Pharisees: “Everything they do is for people to see: They make their phylacteries wide and their tassels on their garments long; they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues; they love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and to be called “Rabbi” by others.” (Matthew 23:5–7)

“The Pharisees” was written by Bobby Brown author of “Seated Above Looking Below.”

See more about his book here:

 

Seated Above, Looking Below: Poems to Lift Your Spirit

ADVENT CANDLE LIGHTING CEREMONY – II

By far, my most popular post has been an Advent Candle Lighting Ceremony originally released in November of 2009. So I have decided to write a new one. You can see the entire ceremony here and download it by clicking on this link if interested:

https://app.box.com/s/v4dlj59j7bqe0tfc4ei4

Original 2009 Ceremony:

https://app.box.com/s/ie7fllgeakmtm384b2je

Week 1 (Hope):

Pastor: Jesus, be the light in our darkness.
As we light the candle of hope,
we pray for those feeling hopeless.

Pastor: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. – Romans 15:13
All: Lord, fill us with hope. Hope of a new day. Hope that all fears are removed. Hope that our worship will please.

Pastor: Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. – Hebrews 10:23
All: Hope that doors of opportunity that seem locked will be opened. Hope that broken relationships will be restored. Hope that diseased bodies will be healed.

Pastor: We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek. – Hebrews 6:19-20
All: Hope for something more than ourselves. Hope that damaged trust will be revived. Hope that flailing churches will be renewed.

Pastor: May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word. – 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
All: Hope does not disappoint us. Hope is fulfilled.
Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Week 2 (Peace):

Pastor: As we light the candle of peace,
we pray for all who suffer the consequences of war and for all victims of violence.

Pastor: The LORD gives strength to his people; the LORD blesses his people with peace. – Psalm 29:11
All: I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety. – Psalm 4:8
Women: We need peace.

Pastor: Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. – Psalm 34:14
All: I will listen to what God the LORD will say; he promises peace to his people, his saints— but let them not return to folly. – Psalm 85:8
Men: Our present peace and our eternal life hangs on this work of Christ.

Pastor: LORD, you establish peace for us; all that we have accomplished you have done for us. – Isaiah 26:12
All: For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. – Isaiah 9:6
Women: Peace starts with a smile.

Pastor: Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you. – Isaiah 54:10
All: But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. – Isaiah 53:5
Men: God wants us to be at peace.

Pastor: Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, – Romans 5:1
All: Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests. – Luke 2:14
Women: We trade fear and anxiety, He provides peace.

Pastor: You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands. – Isaiah 55:12
All: For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, – Romans 14:17
Men: We look for peace in the wrong places.

Pastor: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. – Romans 15:13
All: Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance. – Jude 1:2
Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Week 3 (Joy):

Pastor: As we light the candle of joy,
we pray for the heavy-hearted.

P: The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes. – Ps 19:8
All: The Joy of the LORD is our strength.

P: You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand. – Ps 16:11
Men: The Joy of the LORD is our strength.

P: The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song. – Ps 28:7
Women: The Joy of the LORD is our strength.

P: May the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you rule the peoples justly and guide the nations of the earth. – Ps 67:4
All: The Joy of the LORD is my strength.

P: Sing for joy to God our strength; shout aloud to the God of Jacob! – Ps 81:1
Men: The Joy of the LORD is my strength.

P: Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. – Ps 95:1
Women: The Joy of the LORD is my strength.
Come quickly, Lord Jesus!—

Week 4 (Love):

Pastor: As we light the candle of love,
we pray for those who have never felt love,
and for those who struggle to love others.

M: Love is patient
C: It is not hurried

M: love is kind
C: It is not harsh, rough or hurtful

M: It does not envy
C: It knows no other Gods

M: it does not boast
C: but only in Christ

M: it is not proud
C: It is humble

M: It is not rude
C: It is polite, refined and civil

M: it is not self-seeking
C: It is thoughtful and compassionate

M: it is not easily angered
C: it is understanding and sympathetic

M: it keeps no record of wrongs.
C: it forgives

M: Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
C: Jesus is the truth and the truth is His native language.

M: It always protects
C: never endangers

M: always trusts
C: never doubts

M: always hopes
C: never fears

M: always perseveres.
C: Love never fails.

All: It always succeeds.
Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Christmas Eve (Christ):

M: Jesus, be the light in our darkness. As we light the candle of hope,
C: we pray for those feeling hopeless.
M: As we light the candle of peace,
C: we pray for all who suffer the consequences of war and for all victims of violence.
M: As we light the candle of joy,
C: we pray for the heavy-hearted.
M: As we light the candle of love,
C: we pray for those who have never felt love, and for those who struggle to love others.
M: Jesus be the light in the darkness,
C: that we might reflect your glorious light into the darkest corners of our sin-filled world. Amen.

M: “He will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.” (Luke 1:16–17)
C: What John the Baptist did for Israel, Advent can do for us.

M: We need a savior. “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!”
C: Let every heart prepare him room.
Rejoice in the Lord always. Again, I say rejoice.
Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

Sing to the Lord a New Song in 2014/2015

Sing to the Lord a New Song in 2014/2015

It was popular last year, so I am doing it again. Here are my “new song” recommendations for each of your Lectionary-based worship services in the upcoming church year. On many of the Sundays I have included a choice of songs.

Email me at sjbrown58 “at” yahoo “dot” com if you would like a copy of this file.

Contemporary Song Choices for 2014/2015 based on the Lectionary Readings
Date Song Title Writer Scripture Ref
Nov 30 Advent 1 Since the World Began Mac Powell Isa 64:1-9
Dec 7 Advent 2 A Baby Will Come Bill Wolf Isa 40:3-5
Jesus, Son of God Chris Tomlin Mark 1:1
Dec 14 Advent 3 Our God Saves Paul Baloche Isa 61:3
How Can I Keep from Singing? Chris Tomlin 1Thess 5:18
The Way Jeremy Camp Jn 1:5-7
Dec 21 Advent 4 Born That We May Have Life Chris Tomlin Luke 1:26-38
Dec 24 Christmas Eve We Have a Savior Reuben Morgan Isa 9:6
Emmanuel (Hallowed manger Ground) Chris Tomlin Lk 2:6-7
Dec 25 Christmas Day Glorious Day Mark Hall Jn 1:1-2
Dec 28 Christmas 1 Name Above All Names Tim Hughes Isa 45:22-24
God of Justice Tim Hughes Col3:12
Build Your Kingdom Here Rend Collective Col 3:14-16
Jan 4 Christmas 2 I Will Sing of My Redeemer Chad Cates Eph 1:1-7
Sing and Shout Matt Redman Eph 1:1-8
Let Our God be Praised Michael Farren Eph 1:3
You Alone Can Rescue Matt Redman Eph 1:4
Salvation’s Song Stuart Townend Eph 1:13
It is You Peter Furler Eph 1:7-8
Jan 6 Epiphany Mighty to Save Reuben Morgan Isa 60:1-3
Children of God Mac Powell Eph 3:6
One Small Child David Mecce Mt 2:1-12
Jan 11 The Baptism of our Lord Like a Lion David Bashta Acts 16:25-26
Jesus, Son of God Chris Tomlin Mk 1:1
Jan 18 Epiphany 2 Word of God Speak Bart Millard 1 Sam 3:9
They’ll Know We are Christians by Our Love Peter Scholtes 1 Cor 6:17
Jan 25 Epiphany 3 Go Fish Micahel Schmid Mk 1:17-18
Feb 1 Epiphany 4 You are Able Christy Nockles Dan 3:17
Lord I Need You Matt Maher 1 Cor 1:30
Redemption Song Marc Byrd 1 Cor 1:30
Feb 8 Epiphany 5 10,000 Reasons Matt Redman Ps 103:1-5
Feb 15 Transfiguration Farewell to Alleluia To the tune of “Ode to Joy”
Open the Eyes of My Heart Paul Baloche
Feb 18 Ash Wed The Scandal of Grace Hillsong United 2 Cor 5:20-21
Jesus Messiah Chris Tomlin 2 Cor 5:21
Feb 22 Lent 1 Counting on Your Name Tim Hughes Rom 8:31-39
Across the Lands Getty & Townend Rom 8:34
Jesus, Son of God Chris Tomlin Rom 8:35-39
Whom Shall I Fear Chris Tomlin Rom 8:38
Mar 1 Lent 2 Awesome in This Place Dave Billington Gen 28:17
Amazing Love (You Are My King) Billy Foote Rom 5:8
Grace Like Rain Todd Agnew Rom 5:8
Sweetly Broken Jeremy Riddle Rom 5:8-11
White Flag Chris Tomlin Mk 8:34
Give Me Jesus
  1. Ortega & Jeremy Camp
Mk 8:36-37
Mar 8 Lent 3 The Scandal of Grace Hillsong United 1 Cor 1:23
Mar 15 Lent 4 All Because of Jesus Steve Fee Eph 2:4-5
And Can it Be? Bob Kauflin Eph 2:4-7
How Deep the Father’s Love for Us Getty & Townend Eph 2:4-9
Grace Alone Scott Wesley Brown Eph 2:5-9
Wonderful Maker Chris Tomlin John 3:16
This is Amazing Grace Phil Wickham Jn 3:16
Jesus Saves Jeremy Camp Jn 3:16-17
Light has Come Matt Maher Jn 3:19
Mar 22 Lent 5 Be Glorified Chris Tomlin Jn 12:23
Be Lifted High Chris Tomlin Jn 12:32-36
Mar 29 Palm Sunday Jesus Messiah Chris Tomlin Php 2:1-11
Like an Avalanche Joel Houston Php 2:1-16
Lamb of God Twila Paris Php 2:6-11
Hosanna Brooke Fraser Mk 11:9
Hosanna (Praise is Rising) Paul Baloche Mk 11:9-10
Apr 2 Maundy Thursday Make Us One Twila Paris 1 Cor 10:16,17
Apr 3 Good Friday Lead Me to the Cross Brooke Fraser Heb 4:15
Lord, I Need You Matt Maher Heb 4:16
Nothing but the Blood Matt Redman Heb 4:16
Your Grace Finds Me Matt Redman Heb 4:16
Apr 5 Easter (Dawn) First Song of Isaiah Jack Nobel White Isa 12:2-6
In Christ Alone Getty & Townend 1 Cor 15:51-57
Across the Lands Getty & Townend 1 Cor 15:54-55
Mighty to Save Reuben Morgan 1 Cor 15:54-55
Christ is Risen Matt Maher 1 Cor 15:55 & Jn 20
Let God Arise Chris Tomlin 1 Cor 15:55
Resurrection Hymn Getty & Townend 1 Cor 15:57
Apr 5 Easter This is Amazing Grace Phil Wickham 1 Cor 15:20-23
All Because of Jesus Steve Fee 1 Cor 15:22
Apr 12 Easter 2 Arise Paul Baloche Acts 3:19
Like a Lion Michael Bashta 1 Jn 5:4-5
Apr 19 Easter 3 In Christ Alone Getty & Townend Acts 4:11-12
Your Name Paul Baloche Acts 4:12
Nothing but the Blood Matt Redman 1 Jn 1:7 & 2:1
Apr 26 Easter 4 You Are so Good to Me Ben Pasley Acts 4:31
Because of Your Love Paul Baloche 1 Jn 3:1
Lost in Wonder Martin Layzell 1 Jn 3:1
Children of God Mac Powell 1 Jn 3:1-2
How Great is the Love? Paul Baloche 1 Jn 3:1-5
May 3 Easter 5 I Need You More Marc James Jn 15:5
May 10 Easter 6 The Highest and Greatest Tim Hughes 1 Jn 4:4
Jesus, Son of God Chris Tomlin 1 Jn 4:10
May 14 Ascension Jesus Saves Tim Hughes Acts 1:8
Jesus Saves Jeremy Camp Acts 1:8
Glorious Paul Baloche Acts 1:10
Glorious Day Mark Hall Acts 1:11
The Scandal of Grace Hillsong United Eph 1:18
Open the Eye of My Heart Lord Paul Baloche Eph 1:18-21
Overcome Jon Egan Eph 1:20
May 17 Easter 7 Alive and Running Kristian Stanfill 1 Jn 4:14
My Heart is Filled with Thankfulness Getty & Townend 1 Jn 4:18
You Never Let Go Matt Redman 1 Jn 4:18
Jesus, Son of God Chris Tomlin 1 Jn 4:19
The Power of Your Name Paul Baloche Jn 17:11
The Name of Jesus Chris Tomlin Jn 17:11
May 24 Pentecost Awake My Soul Chris Tomlin Ez 37:4-10, Acts 2:1-3
Holy Spirit Rain Down Russell Fragar John 14:26
May 31 Holy Trinity I See the Lord Chris Falson Isa 6:1-3
Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty Matt Maher Isa 6:1-8
Our Great God Fernando Ortega Isa 6:2-6
Wonderful, Merciful, Savior Dawn Rodgers Rom 8:14-16
June 7 Pentecost 2 The Way Jeremy Camp 2 Cor 4:6
June 14 Pentecost 3 Overflow Matt Maher 2 Cor 4:15
June 21 Pentecost 4 By Faith Keith Getty 2 Cor 5:7
June 28 Pentecost 5 Cannons Phil Wickham Job 38:4-7
The Scandal of Grace Hillsong United 2 Cor 5:15, 20-21
Jesus Messiah Chris Tomlin 2 Cor 5:21
East to West Mark Hall 2 Cor 5:21
Holding Nothing Back Tim Hughes 2 Cor 5:17
July 5 Pentecost 6 Whole World in His Hands Tim Hughes Lam 3:21-24
I Lift My Hands Chris Tomlin Lam 3:21-24
Faithful Chris Tomlin Lam 3:23
The Lord Our God Kristian Stanfill Lam 3:23
In Christ Alone Getty & Townend Lam 3:23-25
July 12 Pentecost 7 Your Grace is Enough Matt Maher 2 Cor 12:9
Your Grace Finds Me Matt Redman 2 Cor 12:9
His Strength is Perfect Steven Curtis Chapman 2 Cor 12:9-10
July 19 Pentecost 8 I Will Sing of My Redeemer Chad Cates Eph 1:1-7
Sing and Shout Matt Redman Eph 1:1-8
Let Our God be Praised Michael Farren Eph 1:3
You Alone Can Rescue Matt Redman Eph 1:4
Salvation’s Song Stuart Townend Eph 1:13
It is You Peter Furler Eph 1:7-8
July 26 Pentecost 9 Through the Cross Ben Cantelon Eph 2:15-17
Aug 2 Pentecost 10 They’ll Know We Are Christians by Our Love Peter Scholtes Eph 4:2-4
May the Words of My Mouth Tim Hughes Eph 4:15
Oceans – Where Feet May Fail Joel Houston Eph 4:14-16
Aug 9 Pentecost 11 Take My Life Scott Underwood Eph 4:23-25
Breathe Marie Barnett John 6:35
Aug 16 Pentecost 12 People Need the Lord Greg Nelson Eph 4:35
Savior of the World Ben Cantelon Eph 4:39-42
Miracle Maker Martin Smith Eph 5:1-15
Come Just as You Are Joseph Sabolick Jn 6:47
Aug 23 Pentecost 13 Holy Spirit Keith Getty Eph 5:18
Aug 30 Pentecost 14 Rescue Jared Andersen Jn 6:68
Rescuer Jn 6:68
Son of God Ed Cash Jn 6:69
Sept 6 Pentecost 15 O Church Arise Getty & Townend Eph 6:10-18
Sept 13 Pentecost 16 O, For a Thousand Tongues to Sing David Crowder Isa 35:4-6
Everything, God in My Living Tim Hughes James 1:17
Everything Chris Tomlin James 1:17
Overflow Matt Maher James 1:17
Friend of God Michael Gungor James 2:23
Sept 20 Pentecost 17 Word of God Speak Bart Millard Isa 50:4
White Flag Chris Tomlin Mk 8:34
Sept 27 Pentecost 18 Yesterday, Today and Forever Viccky Beeching James 3:17
The Servant Song Richard Gillard Mk 9:35
Let the Children Come Michael Card Mk 9:37
Oct 4 Pentecost 19 Jesus Draw Me Ever Nearer Keith Getty James 4:8
Oct 11 Pentecost 20 Come and See Lenny LeBlanc Heb 2:9
Worthy is the Lamb Jeff Nelson Heb 2:9
Let the Children Come Michael Card Mk 10:13-16
Oct 18 Pentecost 21 I Stand for You Jon Ellis Mk 10:21
By Faith Keith Getty Mk 10:27
Oct 25 Pentecost 22 In Christ Alone Getty & Townend Isa 53:10-11
Purify My Heart Jeff Nelson Isa 53:11-12
Once Again Matt Redman Isa 53:11-12
How Deep the Father’s Love for Us Getty & Townend Isa 53:12
Our Great God Fernando Ortega Isa 53:12
Thy Word Amy Grant Heb 4:12
Before the Throne of God Vikki Cook Heb 4:14016
Jesus Messiah Chris Tomlin Mk 10:45
Nov 1 Reformation Salt and Light Jon L’Ecuyer Jer 18:6
O Church Arise Getty & Townend
Nov 8 Last Judgment Here’s My Heart Chris Tomlin Mal 4:2
The Wonder of the Cross Vicky Beeching Heb 9:28
Glorious Day Mark Hall Heb 9:28
Nov 15 Saint’s Triumphant How Can I Keep from Singing? Chris Tomlin
Nov 22 Christ the King O Worship the King Chris Tomlin Dan 7:9-22
And Can it Be? Bob Kauflin Rev 1:4-6
Amazing Love (You are My King) Billy Foote Rev 1:5
The Scandal of Grace Hillsong United Rev 1:5
Behold the Lamb Keith Getty Rev 1:5
Glory to God Forever Steve Fee Rev 1:6
Nov 26 Thanksgiving My Heart is Filled with Thankfulness Keith Getty
Enough Chris Tomlin Php 4:19
All We Need Charlie Hall Php 4:19

 

Forgive Me

I forgive you, do you forgive me? Those are healing words; for the giver and receiver.

In the spring of the the year 0,033 (plus or minus a year) a young, innocent, peace-loving man was brutally beaten, mocked, robbed, humiliated, whipped, insulted and ultimately murdered by a band of unbelieving, ruthless thugs, scoundrels, robbers and murders. Somehow between numerous thunderous blows to his head, he found the strength to mutter these words:

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”  – Jesus (Luke 23:34) … And He meant it. Deep within His hurting heart, He meant it.

That, right there, is our shining example.

M: We should not have a vengeful heart. For God says:
C: Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. – Romans 12:19

M: We should never repay with evil. For God says:
C: Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. – Romans 12:17

M: We should want God’s blessings for those who do wrong to us. For God says:
C: Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. – Luke 6:28

M: We should not rejoice when calamities fall on those who do wrong to us. For God says:
C: Do not gloat when your enemy falls; when they stumble, do not let your heart rejoice – Proverbs 24:17

M: We should not hate those who do wrong against us. For God says:
C: But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you – Matthew 5:44

M: We should seek reconciliation. For God says:
C: If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. – Romans 12:18

M: We should never treat those who have done wrong to us poorly. For God says:
C: If you come across your enemy’s ox or donkey wandering off, be sure to return it. If you see the donkey of someone who hates you fallen down under its load, do not leave it there; be sure you help them with it. – Exodus 23:4-5

Here is forgiveness: when you feel that someone is your enemy or when you simply feel that you or someone you care about has been wronged, forgiveness means:
resisting revenge
not returning evil for evil
wishing them well
grieving at their calamities
praying for their welfare
seeking reconciliation so far as it depends on you
and coming to their aid in distress.
All these point to a forgiving heart. And the heart is all important. Read Matthew 18:21-35 if you don’t believe me and ruminate on that last verse for awhile.

“To forgive, is to give up your right to be angry.” – Pastor Timothy Ehlers

Give-Away

Give-Away!

I would like to offer up to 10 free Amazon E-Book copies of my brother’s book titled “Seated Above, Looking Below” in exchange for a review on Amazon.  If interested, please either leave a comment on this post or email me personally at “sjbrown58 (at) yahoo (dot) com.” I will also mail out one copy of the paperback (US residents only) to the first reply interested in this and willing to write a review.

You can “Look Inside” his book here:

Seated Above, Looking Below

Resilience

This poem was inspired by a Pastor friend who was praying for my family during some rough times. He was praying for “resilience.”

Now, I pray for him…

Resilience, what an awesome word
Like a tender flower climbing through pavement
Breaking through it’s would be tomb-like enslavement
Have you not yet heard?

Resilience, this is what we need
To become healthy and physically strong
It’s found in God’s loving arms; where we belong
In Christ, we are freed.

Resilience, we have it in Christ
As the great potter molds the pliable clay
It’s wonderfully bolstered as people pray
Oh! What sacrifice!

Resilience, it’s there to be found
In His mighty kingdom, where we are heirs
So tap into the ultimate one who cares
God’s blessings abound.

-+-

Poetic Prayer for Comfort, Healing and Rest
– Inspired by Matthew 11:28-30

In times of weakness and in an hour of need,
Yours is the strength on which we feed.
The shoulder we long to rest upon,
And the feet we lay our troubles on.
You, are all that we need.

You offer rest to the weary and food to the needy.
You comfort your people, who gather under the steeple.
You are gentle and humble; you are there when we stumble.
You heal my disease and fill all my needs.
Only to you, do I fall to my knees,
With hope that my worship will please,
the One whose love for me will never cease.

Amen.

A Toolbox for Worship Leaders, Pastors and Musicians

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