Instructions: Part of this is a conversation between the Pastor & a Lay Reader conversing with each other in front of the congregation. The congregation is witnessing and listening to the conversation.
Pastor: Sing joyfully to the LORD, you righteous;
Lay Reader: it is fitting for the upright to praise him.
Pastor: Praise the LORD with the harp;
Lay Reader: make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre.
Pause – Guitarist strums softly in the background (We plan to use “I Will Celebrate” by Rita Blaoche).
Pastor: (waits 20 seconds or so)
Sing to him a new song;
Lay Reader: play skillfully, and shout for joy.
Pause – Congregation sings “I Will Celebrate”. The pianist joins in on the keyboard & the guitar gets louder.
Song ends – music stops.
Pastor: For the word of the LORD is right and true;
Lay Reader: he is faithful in all he does.
Pastor: The LORD loves righteousness and justice;
Lay Reader: the earth is full of his unfailing love.
Pastor: By the word of the LORD were the heavens made,
Lay Reader: their starry host by the breath of his mouth.
Pastor: He gathers the waters of the sea into jars,
Lay Reader: he puts the deep into storehouses.
Pastor: Let all the earth fear the LORD;
Lay Reader: let all the people of the world revere him.
Pastor: For he spoke, and it came to be;
Lay Reader: he commanded, and it stood firm.
Pastor: The LORD foils the plans of the nations;
Lay Reader: he thwarts the purposes of the peoples.
Pastor: But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever,
Lay Reader: the purposes of his heart through all generations.
Pastor: Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD,
Lay Reader: the people he chose for his inheritance.
Pastor: From heaven the LORD looks down and sees all mankind;
Lay Reader: from his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth-
Pastor: He who forms the hearts of all,
Lay Reader: who considers everything they do.
Pastor: No king is saved by the size of his army;
Lay Reader: no warrior escapes by his great strength.
Pastor: A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;
Lay Reader: despite all its great strength it cannot save.
Pastor: But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him,
Lay Reader: on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,
Pastor: to deliver them from death
Lay Reader: and keep them alive in famine.
All: We wait in hope for the LORD;
Lay Reader: he is our help and our shield.
All: In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.
Pastor: May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD,
Lay Reader: even as we put our hope in you.