Category Archives: Responsive Readings


I was recently traveling with a colleague who has two young girls.  As we sat together in an airport lounge his two girls contacted him via FaceTime and I overhead the youngest say to their father “I want to talk about loooovvvvvveeeeee!” Leave it to a six year old missing her daddy to be so blunt.

This love between a father and his child is precious, but it got me thinking about God’s love toward us.  Actually, I think about this often.  Because…

Love is a positive force
Love changes lives
To know God is to know love
Love describes God perfectly
Love is on the move because God is on the move
Jesus is the living proof that God is love
God’s love is unusually real
Love gives us dignity and worth

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. – 1 John 4:9-10 & 16 

Here is one of my responsive readings on love:

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.  It always succeeds. 

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. – Eph 3:14-19

Love in Action

Love in Action – Merging Romans 12:9-21 & 1 Cor 13:4-8
M: Love must be sincere. 
C: It is not self seeking
M: Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 
C: Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
M: Be devoted to one another in love. 
C: Love always trusts
M: Honor one another above yourselves. 
C: Love does not dishonor others.
M: Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 
C: Love always perseveres
M: Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 
C: Love is patient
M: Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. 
C: Love is kind.
M: Practice hospitality. 
C: Love always hopes.
M: Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 
C: Love is not easily angered
M: Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 
C: Love rejoices with the truth
M: Live in harmony with one another. 
C: Love always trusts
M: Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. 
C: Love is not proud
M: Do not be conceited. 
C: Love is not self-seeking
M: Do not repay anyone evil for evil. 
C Love keeps no record of wrongs
M: If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 
C: Love never fails.

The Basics

“The Basics” – Perhaps this reading might work well when visitors or those who are young in their faith are expected.


M: So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. – Genesis 1:27 
C: God is our Creator. We are his creatures. He is the potter. We are the clay.
M: While we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good. – Titus 2:13-14
C: We are sinners and He is our Savior.


M: Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. – Romans 8:1-2
C: God has done it all for us believers, not by our works but by His grace. We now stand redeemed and saved in His presence.


M: The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. – Romans 8:15-17
C: God is our Father. We are his dear children.


M: “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. – John 10:11
C: God is our Shepherd. We are his sheep. He lays down his life for us. We trust His word.


M: But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. – 2 Corinthians 12:9
C: We are weak. He is strong. We rely on His perfect strength.

The Apostle’s Creed with the song “We Believe”

The Apostles’ Creed Read Responsively with the Song Titled “We Believe” by the Newsboys

Praise Band Sings Verse 1 and Verse 2:

In this time of desperation
When all we know is doubt and fear
There is only one foundation
We believe, we believe
In this broken generation
When all is dark, You help us see
There is only one salvation
We believe, we believe

The Band then plays the chorus softly in the background during the following readings

M: I believe in God, the Father almighty,
C: Maker of heaven and earth.
M: I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord.
C: who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.

Congregation Joins the Band and Sings the Chorus 1:

We believe in God the Father
We believe in Jesus Christ
We believe in the Holy Spirit
And He’s given us new life
We believe in the crucifixion
We believe that He conquered death
We believe in the resurrection
And He’s coming back again, we believe

Praise Band Sings Verse 3:

So, let our faith be more than anthems
Greater than the songs we sing
And in our weakness and temptations
We believe, we believe!

The Band then plays the chorus softly in the background during the following readings

M: He descended into hell.
C: The third day he rose again from the dead.
M: He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father almighty.
C: From there He will come to judge the living and the dead.
M: I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian Church, the communion of saints
C: The forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.
All: Amen.

Congregation Joins the Band and Sings the Chorus 2:

We believe in God the Father!
We believe in Jesus Christ!
We believe in the Holy Spirit!
And He’s given us new life!
We believe in the crucifixion!
We believe that He conquered death!
We believe in the resurrection!
And He’s coming back again!

The band sings the Bridge:

Let the lost be found and the dead be raised!
In the here and now, let love invade!
Let the church live loud. Our God will say
We believe, we believe!
And the gates of hell will not prevail!
For the power of God, has torn the veil!
Now we know Your love will never fail!
We believe, we believe!

Congregation Joins the Band and Sings the Chorus 3 and the Tag:

We believe in God the Father
We believe in Jesus Christ
We believe in the Holy Spirit
And He’s given us new life!
We believe in the crucifixion!
We believe that He conquered death!
We believe in the resurrection!
And He’s coming back,
He’s coming back again!
He’s coming back again!
We believe!
We believe!

To view the song video:

He Makes All Things New

He Makes All Things New

A Responsive Reading for the New Year

M: Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead – 1 Peter 1:3

C: Praise the Lord. Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise in the assembly of his faithful people. – Ps 149:1

M: See, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. – Isa 65:17

C: In keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells. – 2 Peter 3:13

M: You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. – Eph 4:22-24

C: For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin – Romans 6:6

M: A new command I give you: Love one another. As Jesus has loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are His disciples, if you love one another. – John 13:34-35

C: Be my rock of refuge, to which I can always go; give the command to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress. – Psalm 71:3

M: See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. – Isa 43:19

C: Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth. – Ps 96:1

Psalm 150 Musical Responsive Reading

Psalm 150 Musical Responsive Reading

M: Praise the Lord.
C: We are here today to offer our praises to our savior.

M: Praise God in his sanctuary;
C: We are the body of Christ. We have gathered in this sanctuary to lift our voice in praise.

M: praise him in his mighty heavens.
C: We look forward to being with our savior one day in heaven where we will be surrounded with beauty and perfect heart-felt praise.

M: Praise him for his acts of power;
C: For walking on water, for calming the storm, for raising the dead and for conquering sin we praise you.

M: Praise him for his surpassing greatness.
C: We praise the King of Kings, The Lord of Lords and the Prince of Peace.

M: Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet,
C: We will praise you with brass instruments. (if you have a trumpet player available; let them blast now*)

M: Praise him with the harp and lyre,
C: We will praise you with stringed instruments. (if you have any string instrument players available; let them strum, pick, thumb and stroke now*)

M: praise him with timbrel and dancing,
C: We will praise you with tambourines and dancing. (Tap the tambourine now*)

M: praise him with the strings and pipe,
C: We will praise you with the organ and the guitar. (Organ and guitar play here*)

M: praise him with the clash of cymbals,
C: we crash the cymbals together to celebrate because the today is the day you have made (cymbal crash now*)

M: praise him with resounding cymbals.
C: Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord. (Crash the cymbals again*)

* Instrumental breaks are 3 to 5 second riffs that have been prepared in advance

Every Tribe, Every Nation, Every People

Every Tribe
Every Nation
Every People
… Will one day, Worship Him!

Pastor: Who will remember and turn to the LORD?
All: All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the LORD, and all the families of the nations will bow down before him, for dominion belongs to the LORD and He rules over the nations. – Psalm 22:27-28

Pastor: Who will come and worship before the LORD?
All: All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; they will bring glory to your name. For you are great and do marvelous deeds; you alone are God. – Psalm 86:9-10

Pastor: Who will not fear you, O Lord, and bring glory to your name?
All: For you alone are holy. ALL NATIONS will come and worship before you, for your righteous acts have been revealed. – Rev 15:4

Related Readings:


And they sang a new song: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from EVERY TRIBE and LANGUAGE and PEOPLE and NATION. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.”

Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. In a loud voice they sang: “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!”

Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever! “The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped.


After this I looked and there before me was a GREAT MULTITUDE that no one could count, from EVERY NATION, TRIBE, PEOPLE and LANGUAGE, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”

Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version, Copyright© 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of International Bible Society

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Psalm 111 and 112

Psalm 111 and 112 are the same length and seem to thematically fit well together. Here’s a responsive reading with the two Psalms twisted together.

P: Praise the Lord. Ps 111:1
C: Praise the Lord. Ps 112:1

P: I will extol the Lord with all my heart in the council of the upright and in the assembly. Ps 111:2
C: Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who finds great delight in his commands. Ps 112:2

P: Great are the works of the Lord; they are pondered by all who delight in them. Ps 111:3
C: His children will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed. Ps 112:3

P: Glorious and majestic are his deeds; and his righteousness endures forever. He has caused his wonders to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and compassionate. Ps 111:4
C: Wealth and riches are in his house, and his righteousness endures forever. Ps 112:4

P: He provides food for those who fear him; he remembers his covenant forever. Ps 111:5
C: Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for the gracious and compassionate and righteous man. Ps 112:5

P: He has shown his people the power of his works, giving them the lands of other nations. Ps 111:6
C: Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice. Ps 112:6

P: The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy. Ps 111:7
C: Surely he will never be shaken; a righteous man will be remembered forever. Ps 112:7

P: They are steadfast for ever and ever, done in faithfulness and uprightness. Ps 111:8
C: He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord. His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes. Ps 112:8

P: He provided redemption for his people; he ordained his covenant forever—holy and awesome is his name. Ps 111:9
C: He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor, his righteousness endures forever ;his horn will be lifted high in honor. Ps 112:9

P: The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise. Ps 111:10
C: The wicked man will see and be vexed, he will gnash his teeth and waste away; the longings of the wicked will come to nothing. Ps 112:10