From Jamie Harvill’s Blog
Worship—our response to a great and glorious God—will be the fuel that propels the church forward, even into evolving cultures, style changes, through difficulties, famines and stock market crashes. Worship is the priority of the church. All activities—evangelism, spiritual formation, ministry, corporate worship, etc.—must lead to the great result: the praise of His glory (Ephesians 1:11-14).
Here is a great post from Mark Condon. It asks a great question that many churches must struggle: “Do We Still Need Choirs?” I like his answer and the subsequent reasons.
“Do We Still Need Choirs? I am asked almost every week in my travels about choirs vs. praise teams. Is choir still relevant? Should we keep working to make this happen? Are we behind-the-times by having a choir?
My answer in short is YES, we still need choirs!!!! Keep working for these reasons.
Yes, I love contemporary/modern worship and I love having the praise band/praise team concept, but there is something about having a choir leading worship. I think part of the disconnect comes when we think of the choir as a performing entity rather than a worship leading entity. I think that the same critiques that are made of choirs could be made of the modern worship team/praise band; especially the one that says that choirs are showy or performance oriented. I see quite a bit of that in today’s praise bands.
One of the things that I am looking forward to at Parkway this spring is putting on a spring worship event with our choir at the center. We have been having great success in using our choir on special occasions and when we use them, they are also the primary worship team. Usually those mornings the only other person on vocals is me and I think it adds a unique sound. So I agree with Mark, choirs are still an important part of the church landscape.
Here is a great song from Liberty University and Thomas Road Baptist Church called “Bless the Lord.”
Today is Martin Luther King’s birthday remembrance. In honor of that I present U2’s “Pride in the Name of Love.”
Cold Days and Nights
There is no mistaking it – we are in the heart of winter – Alberta Clippers – Cold air from Canada – Polar Vortex – they all mean the same thing – it’s been cold and windy here in the Shenandoah Valley. So much so, that it’s kept me from running. This week it looks like we have more of the same. I was able to get out Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, but this weekend it has been rough. Tomorrow looks like one good day over the next seven. These cold days and long nights are tough on the eating front. I think the cold weather just wants to make you eat.
This week I also heard that this is the most depressing time of the year. I know that I have been having a bit of the winter blues. Hopefully February will be here soon and we’ll really start thinking of spring.
A Year Ago This Week
Last year at this time, we had sent Pam off to Canada – during the midst of their coldest weather in 10 years. I remember it was quite cold here as well and I didn’t do much running that last week of January. We were waiting the arrival of our first grandchild. It’s hard to believe that in a few weeks, Robert will be a year old. Be praying for our kids because they have had a bit of a bout with some sickness.
At the moment the Seahawks have tied up the football game in Seattle. The first game was a great game – watching the Broncos beat the Patriots. I have always liked the Broncos. I’m not much a fan of the 49’ers, so I’m really rooting for the Seahawks. This is really about the only time that I watch much football.
Sing, Sing, Sing
We had a good worship service this morning – it was an interesting and eclectic mix of songs – some new, some old, some gospel songs, some traditional hymns. There were several technical elements – each one which could have tripped us up, but we made it all the way through and the service was free of technical glitches. More important, the Spirit of God was present with us and that is the best part of worship. It’s been a good week and I am looking forward to this next week.
See you next week. Pressing On!
January 19, 2014
2nd Sunday After Epiphany
Sing, Sing, Sing
Welcome and Announcements
Call to Worship and Invocation
Songs of Worship
I Sing the Mighty Power of God
I Love You Lord
Comfort Care Presentation
Worship through Giving
Love Lifted Me
Worship through God’s Word
Fill Me Now
Almighty God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ is the light of the world: Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and Sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ’s glory, that he may be known, worshipped, and obeyed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Second Sunday after the Epiphany (January 19, 2014)
Isaiah 49:1-7; Psalm 40:1-11; 1 Corinthians 1:1-9; John 1:29-42
1 I waited patiently for the Lord to help me,
and he turned to me and heard my cry.
2 He lifted me out of the pit of despair,
out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground
and steadied me as I walked along.
3 He has given me a new song to sing,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see what he has done and be amazed.
They will put their trust in the Lord.
4 Oh, the joys of those who trust the Lord,
who have no confidence in the proud
or in those who worship idols.
5 O Lord my God, you have performed many wonders for us.
Your plans for us are too numerous to list.
You have no equal.
If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds,
I would never come to the end of them.
6 You take no delight in sacrifices or offerings.
Now that you have made me listen, I finally understand—
you don’t require burnt offerings or sin offerings.
7 Then I said, “Look, I have come.
As is written about me in the Scriptures:
8 I take joy in doing your will, my God,
for your instructions are written on my heart.”
9 I have told all your people about your justice.
I have not been afraid to speak out,
as you, O Lord, well know.
10 I have not kept the good news of your justice hidden in my heart;
I have talked about your faithfulness and saving power.
I have told everyone in the great assembly
of your unfailing love and faithfulness.
11 Lord, don’t hold back your tender mercies from me.
Let your unfailing love and faithfulness always protect me.
I had heard this story earlier this week. At the time I didn’t realize the scope of this story. It really is quite the tragedy. On Monday morning of this week, Meg was out for her morning run. She was on the proper side of the road for a runner and was hit by an oncoming vehicle – the driver has been charged with a DUI.
The internet running community has organized a virtual run in memory of Meg Cross Menzies tomorrow. I know that I plan on running tomorrow in memory of Meg. If you are a runner or even a walker I encourage you to go out and do your miles in memory of Meg. If you do those miles use #megsmiles as the hashtag on either Facebook and/or Twitter.
While I don’t know Meg Menzies, it’s just one more example of distracted driving tragically altering the course of a family. Pressing On!