It’s September already? That happened fast, didn’t it?

This Sunday was good, even though I didn’t expect it to be. The morning started off with lots of craziness – mics not working, miscommunication about communion setup, tech problems – just one of those wild Sundays we like to forget about!

However, once we started exalting our God in song, that stress melted away. Interesting how that happens, huh? Here’s what we did…

Fourth time we’ve done this song (I think.) It’s a great tune, but I definitely think it’s one that needs the full band. On Sunday, we were missing our B3 player and our aux percussionists and I think the song might have suffered a bit because of it. Please understand, the players did great, it’s a fantastic song to open with it’s about as solid lyrically as a song can be, so it was by no means a failure. However, I think it’s helpful to listen critically to these things so that you can best know the songs you’re using in worship. My note on this one at the end of the day was simple: “Went okay. Always do with full band.”

Call To Worship
I grabbed the “General Thanksgiving” from the Book of Common Prayer, Appendix B (Modern Language Version.) I simplified it a bit by removing a few words, but felt the end result was helpful to us in worship:
Father of mercy, we give You humble and hearty thanks for all Your goodness and loving-kindness to us. 
We bless You for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; but above all, we thank you for Your redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ; for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory. Give us due sense of all Your mercies, that our hearts may be genuinely thankful and that we may show forth Your praise, not only with our lips, but with our whole lives!
I read this over  a big synth pad and our drummer was right on time. As soon as I finished reading, he rolled us into the next song.

Second week to use this Stanfill song in the set. It went great. I had Collin, our guest keyboardist and vocalist, lead the second verse and chorus and he nailed it. This one is well suited for our players…the slower tempo and syncopations are right up our alley. Our guitarist, Smitty, did some nice, tasteful fills in the verses…way better than the CD version!

Ross welcomed our folks with James 5:7-9:
Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains. You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. 9Do not grumble against one another, brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing at the door.
Ross is finishing up his series on Jacob and he’s done a great job of hitting a few consistent themes or phrases during this series. One thing he’s reiterated  consistently is that the story of Jacob teaches us to “rehearse God’s story” for us when we gather to worship. It’s a beautiful image of worship and it’s been encouraging to think on worship along those lines.

Still in love with this new Matt Redman song. The band did so good on it and the congregation sounds pretty good singing out that God is standing over all things! After the last time we used this one, I opted to cut out that end chorus/vamp. I like it, but realized last time that it stretches the song a little too long and adds a new thematic element right at the end. I cut if for this week, and the song felt a little more natural. If I use that ending chorus again, it will probably be in place of the chorus breakdown in the bridge. So far, nobody’s jumped up and said, “Hey! Where’s that ending chorus vamp thing?”

After that song, we sat our folks and told them we had a special treat for the service. Jeff Bice, our Missions & Discipleship Director, came on stage with Tim Rickelman to talk about Life Groups. Our new season of Life Groups kicks off next week and we wanted folks to have an inside peek into what Life Groups is all about!

We’ve done this one a couple of times, but I wanted to bring it back. It went okay. During first service, I let folks remain seated, but in the 2nd set, I had them stand up. The standing felt a bit more energetic, but the song went great in both services. Our folks are still learning it, but I think it’ll be a good addition to our catalog.

We did this Robbie Seay song for Communion. The last time we did it, I felt stronger about it. It came off fine, but something just didn’t feel all that natural about it to me.

It was a great day – especially considering since there was a part of me expecting something else to break the whole time! Our musicians and tech team did a wonderful job and managed the day beautifully.


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