Posts Tagged ‘Lead Me to the Cross’

This weekend was the third and final week of our series, “The Story.” In his message,  Joe shared about how and why we to share the gospel in a compelling manner, inviting others to trust in Jesus for their salvation. You can listen to or watch the entire message and service here.

Here’s our service plan:

Pre-Service – “True Love” (C) [Phil Wickham]
Welcome
“Hosanna (Praise Is Rising)” (G) [Paul Baloche, Brenton Brown]
Greeting Time
Announcements
Message – “The Story: Share It Compellingly” [Joe Hishmeh]
“Your Great Name” (Bb) [Michael Neale, Krissy Nordhoff]
“Lead Me To The Cross” (Bm) [Brooke Ligertwood]
“I Will Go” (F#m) [Tim Neufeld, Jon Neufeld, Allen Salmon]
Dismissal

Thoughts: I believe this weekend was a great weekend for our church. Joe really called us all into sharing the gospel with the people in our lives, because Jesus is worth it. Our singing echoed that same thought, and it was a great call and challenge to each of us as we evaluated our priorities.

We began in the pre-service time the same as we had the previous two weeks, with “True Love” by Phil Wickham. I love this song, because it is a very powerful portrait of the gospel and what Jesus accomplished for us. We then began the service by inviting the Lord to have His way in us as we sang “Hosanna (Praise Is Rising),” which is an excellent call to worship. Later, we responded to Joe’s message with “Your Great Name,” reflecting on the power of the name of Jesus. Jesus changes everything. His name, and His name alone, has the power to save. We continued with “Lead Me To The Cross” to give us words through which to express our submission to the Lord’s call to take up our cross and follow Him in proclaiming the good news. We closed our service with another song in that same vein, “I Will Go,” which is a little bit of a punch in the gut, if we’re honest. It calls us from our comfort and privilege to sacrifice, service, and submission in reaching the lost and needy in our world. Everyone who encounters Jesus has to wrestle with that decision–either they leave following Him more closely, or they walk away further from Him and more committed to being “lord” of their own lives. I called the church to see the surpassing worth of Jesus and what He has done for us, and to respond with living our lives in worship and submission to Him. He alone is worthy!

Your turn: what were your experiences, observations, or take-aways from these past two weekends?

– Bill

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Here are the song sets from all of our Advent services this year. It is always one of my favorite seasons of the year, as we celebrate how God is with us, and also anticipate how He is coming again for us! You can watch the messages and services here.

December 7 & 8, 2013

“Joy to the World” (G) [George Friedrich Handel, Isaac Watts, arr. by Bill Horn] 
“Lead Me To The Cross” (Bm) [Brooke Ligertwood]
“What Child Is This” (Em) [William Chatterton Dix, arr. by Bill Horn]
“O Come Let Us Adore Him” (D) [Matt Crocker, Autumn Hardman, C. Frederick Oakeley, Ryan Taubert, John Francis Wade]

December 14 & 15, 2013

“Hark The Herald Angels Sing” (E) [Felix Mendelssohn, Charles Wesley, arr. by Bill Horn]
“Hosanna” (E) [Brooke Ligertwood]
“Your Great Name” (Bb) [Micheal Neale, Krissy Nordhoff]
“Jesus Messiah” (G) [Daniel Carson, Jesse Reeves, Ed Cash, Chris Tomlin]
“O Holy Night” (C) [Adolphe Charles Adam, Placide Cappeau, John S. Dwight]

December 21 & 22, 2013

“Angels From The Realms Of Glory” (Bb) [James Montgomery, Henry Thomas Smart, arr. by Bill Horn]
“Everlasting God” (Bb) [Brenton Brown, Ken Riley]
“O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” (Em) [Henry Sloane Coffin, Thomas Helmore, John Mason Neale]
“You Have Overcome” (A) [Bill Horn, Erik Oldberg]
“Rejoice” (Bb) [Dustin Kensrue, Stuart Townend]

Christmas Eve, December 24, 2013

“Joy To The World” (C) [George Friedrich Handel, Isaac Watts, arr. by Bill Horn]
“Go Tell It On The Mountain” (D) [John W. Work]
“O Come Let Us Adore Him” (D) [Matt Crocker, Autumn Hardman, C. Frederick Oakeley, Ryan Taubert, John Francis Wade]
“What Child Is This” (Em) [William Chatterton Dix, arr. by Bill Horn]
“Silent Night” (G) [Franz Xaver Gruber, Joseph Mohr, John Freeman Young]


(an image of our Ephesians set design, courtesy of our Tech Director, Wyatt Johnston)

This week our adult ministries pastor, David Hinkle, continued our discipleship series, “Ephesians – United in Christ.” In his message, David shared from Ephesians 2:11-22 about living in unity in the Church for the purpose of glorifying Jesus Christ. One of the most impacting thoughts was that God has chosen to hang His name and reputation in the world primarily through the Church. He also gave us some really useful practical wisdom about how to respond to the needs of those who are hurting. It was a strong challenge for all of us to pursue love, peace, and unity with one another, not for its own sake, but for the glory of our great God and Savior! You can listen to or watch the entire message and service here.

For our singing this week, we focused on the saving work of Christ on our behalf.

Here’s our service plan from this weekend:

Pre-Service Countdown – “Beautiful Things” (D) [Lisa Gungor, Michael Gungor]
“Kingdom” (A) [Kristian Stanfill]

Welcome/Greeting Time

“Hallelujah To My King” (C) [Paul Baloche]
“Lead Me To The Cross” (D) [Brooke Fraser]

“In Christ Alone” (E) [Keith Getty, Stuart Townend]
Message – “Ephesians 2:11-22” [David Hinkle]
“Your Great Name” (Bb) [Michaele Neale, Krissy Nordhoff]
Offering/Announcements/Dismissal

“Beautiful Things” – This was the second time we have sung this song in the pre-service time. It was a great fit for the focus of the weekend, because it points to the amazing truth that Jesus has taken our broken lives and not only made them new, but He knits us together as something as beautiful as the Church — His body — here on the earth. We can accomplish more together than we can apart, and we need one another. There is nothing more powerful than seeing the Church truly living as the Church — doing life together, caring for one another, supporting and encouraging one another, bearing one another’s burdens, serving together, and loving like Jesus loved us.

“Kingdom” – This was our opening song of our services this weekend. It was a late addition to the list after debating between it and “The Solid Rock.” I love how this song connected with the message, as we sang about how God has made us “the kingdom of God” and “an army of love,” whose purpose is to carry love and truth to our broken world. He has put us together not just to form a “holy huddle,” but for a glorious mission and purpose: to expand His kingdom and to take His gospel to the ends of the earth.

“Hallelujah To My King” – After our welcome time, we continued with this song, which recalls and celebrates the gospel, and how “We were strangers/ now we’re called His own.” This thought is tied very closely with the focus passage this weekend, which says that we “have been brought near by the blood of Christ” and that Jesus “Himself is our peace.” We have great cause to praise Him–He has rescued us and made peace for us, that we could be with Him forever. Sarah Oldberg led us on this song, and she did a great job as always.

“Lead Me To The Cross” – Sarah led us this song as well, and it continued to help us focus our eyes on the cross. Everything in our lives as Christians ought to begin with the cross, because everything changes for us there. When we fix our eyes on the cross (which is empty, by the way…) we see things in the proper perspective. We see the incredible and ridiculous love of God. We see grace beyond measure. We find our motivation to love others and to be truly selfless, because Jesus was selfless for us.

“In Christ Alone” – I love this modern hymn by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend. This was one that I thought was more familiar to our church than it was. I had anticipated a little more participation, but it seemed to me that people were focusing more on the words of the song (and that’s not a bad thing!) because they were somewhat new to them. I love how this song communicates the gospel. I think I will need to make a point of singing it more often with our congregation, because this is definitely a song worth singing. Again, we sang this because I wanted us to focus on the gospel, because all of our worship and response stems from that.

“Your Great Name” – We responded to the message by singing this song together. Amy Thompson started us off and led the first verse of this song, and then I jumped in with the male vocal on the chorus and we continued on together. This song was definitely a highlight of the weekend. We sang it because David emphasized the truth that Jesus has placed His name and reputation on His body, the Church. All of us come from different places of brokenness and need, but when we love as Jesus loves, and care with the kind of care that Jesus has for us, Jesus’ name is lifted up and exalted. We honor Him and worship Him when we imitate Him in our world.

This weekend started a little rough in our first service, as we had a few hiccups in the band, but we smoothed them out for the last three services. It was a great moment of learning and growth for our team, because when things go bad, it is easy to get sidetracked and overly focused on our mistakes. To press on, we have to learn our lessons and move on and keep working to make things better. Our team did just that. It was a great weekend of worship, where the church was challenged to follow Jesus more fully, and where Jesus was truly lifted up!

I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were!

What were your thoughts or experiences on your worship experience from this weekend?

p.s. don’t forget to check out The Worship Community!

This was our fourth weekend walking through 1 John together in our “Love In Christ” series. David Hinkle preached about obedience from 1 John, focusing on “chasing Christ rather than checking the box,” and pursuing “godliness, not merely goodness.” I think we were all challenged and called to Christ this weekend. You can listen to or watch the entire message and service here.

For our singing this week, we focused on songs that emphasized God’s calling on us and His worthiness for our obedience. He loved first and gave first, and our obedience is a response to God for who He is and what He has done.

Here’s our service plan from this weekend:

“I Will Go” (F#m) [Tim Neufeld, Jon Neufeld]
Welcome/Greeting Time

“Let Me Sing” (Bb) [Todd Fields]
“Hosanna” (D) [Brooke Fraser]
“Lead Me To The Cross” (D) [Brooke Fraser]
“All To Jesus I Surrender” (aka “I Surrender All”) (D) [Judson Wheeler Van DeVenter, Winfield Scott Weeden]

Message – “Love In Christ: Obedience” [David Hinkle]
Offering

“Because of Your Love” (G) [Phil Wickham]
Announcements/Dismissal

“I Will Go” – This was our opener this week, and it is a strong song of dedication that we have sung a few times over the past year. I love the message of the lyric, and I think it something worthy of being sung often: “I will go, I will go, I will go, Lord, send me/ To the world, to the lost, to the poor and hungry/ Take everything I am, I’m clay within Your hands/ I will go, I will go, send me.” May this be the Church’s sincere prayer to the Lord.

“Let Me Sing” – This song really emphasizes the correct heart and motivation for obedience: because of what Jesus has done in giving His life for our redemption, we respond with all that we are as living offerings of worship for Him and His glory.

“Hosanna” – We sang this song because the second verse and bridge really tied in well with our focus, asking God to break and shape our hearts to align with His.

“Lead Me To The Cross” – This is another great song of dedication, as we look to the cross of Christ, where He also calls us to take up our own cross in following Him. Our own life of sacrifice ought to be modeled after His.

“All To Jesus I Surrender” – We tagged this song onto the end of “Lead Me To The Cross,” as a way to help tie everything together. Jesus is worthy of ALL we are and ALL we have. Let us hold nothing back from Him as He calls us to follow Him.

“Because Of Your Love” – I think this song was a very fitting response song to David’s message (praise God for His direction here). Again, this song emphasized how the Lord gave first, and our response and obedience to Him is because of what He has already done for us: “Because of Your cross, my debt is paid/ Because of Your blood, my sins are washed away/ Now all of my life, I freely give/ Because of Your love, because of Your love I live.”

This weekend was a good weekend overall. I felt that our team led with sincerity and intensity, despite a few loose moments in our playing. I will take that any day. I want our team to lead like they mean it. Sometimes that will result in some less than perfect moments for now, but as we all become more familiar with our vocabulary, that will continue to improve. The bottom line is that we cannot expect our congregation to more excited about engaging with God than we are. That is our challenge–to lead by example, in every area of our lives. I’m really proud of how our team is growing and trying to lead more and more each week.

I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were!

In the Son,
Bill

p.s. don’t forget to check out The Worship Community!

This weekend, we continued our Advent series with a message entitled, “God For Us.” Joe shared about the different meaningful ways we can understand this expression, and all the ways that God is truly “for us.” Joe shared that Jesus is for us in His life, in His death, in His resurrection, and His return. We need to live life in light of who God is and what He has done for us, in hope, worship, and anticipation of His second Advent. You can listen to the entire message here.

Here’s our service plan from this weekend:

Time of Preparation/Prayer
“I Stand Amazed (How Marvelous)” (E) [Charles Hutchinson Gabriel]
Welcome/Greeting Time “Joyful (The One Who Saves)” (C) [Brenton Brown, Jason Ingram, Henry van Dyke, Ludwig van Beethoven]
“Our God” (G) [Chris Tomlin, Jonas Myrin, Matt Redman]
“O Holy Night” (C) [Placide Cappeau, John Sullivan Dwight, Adolphe Charles Adam]
“What Child Is This” (Em) [William Chatterton Dix]
Message – “God For Us” [Joe Hishmeh] Offering/Announcements
“Lead Me To The Cross” (Bm) [Brooke Fraser]
Dismissal


“I Stand Amazed (How Marvelous)”
– We sang this song in our preparation time. Kelsey Thomsen led us on this song, as we focused on the love of Christ as it was demonstrated at the cross, where He redeemed us from our sins, and rescued us from death. What amazing love He has for us!

“Joyful (The One Who Saves)” – We continued teaching this song to our congregation for the third and final week. I have really enjoyed singing this song with our congregation, and I look forward to bringing it back again in the future, because it is a great combination of old and new in a song that is true and memorable.

“Our God” – This song was the one that connected with the message the best this week. It is powerful to exalt God and His sovereignty and then recognize that if this all-powerful God is for us, nothing can stand against us.

“O Holy Night” – This is one of my favorite Advent songs. It is a beautiful piece of music and a solid lyric that declares some of the changes that Jesus’ arrival on this earth effected. Everything is different because He came. We can have in Him an object of hope, upon which we can found our faith and trust. Because of who He is and what He has done, He is worthy of our humble worship. He is King!

This carol came from a poem written in the mid-1800’s by a French poet, Placide Cappeau. You can read more of the song’s story in the wiki.

“Midnight, Christians” by Placide Cappeau

Midnight, Christians, it is the solemn hour,
When God-man descended to us
To erase the stain of original sin
And to end the wrath of His Father.
The entire world thrills with hope
On this night that gives it a Savior.

People kneel down, wait for your deliverance.
Christmas, Christmas, here is the Redeemer,
Christmas, Christmas, here is the Redeemer!

May the ardent light of our Faith
Guide us all to the cradle of the infant,
As in ancient times a brilliant star
Guided the Oriental kings there.
The King of Kings was born in a humble manger;
O mighty ones of today, proud of your greatness,

It is to your pride that God preaches.
Bow your heads before the Redeemer!
Bow your heads before the Redeemer!

The Redeemer has overcome every obstacle:
The Earth is free, and Heaven is open.
He sees a brother where there was only a slave,
Love unites those that iron had chained.
Who will tell Him of our gratitude,
For all of us He is born, He suffers and dies.

People stand up! Sing of your deliverance,
Christmas, Christmas, sing of the Redeemer,
Christmas, Christmas, sing of the Redeemer!

“What Child Is This” – This is probably my favorite Advent song of all. For most of my life (and this is probably the case for most of us), I only heard one chorus for this song. A few years ago, when I was reading a book that my friend Jerry gave me, I saw that there were originally three choruses for this song. The second of these was striking: “Nails, spear shall pierce Him through/ The cross be borne for me, for you/ Hail, hail the Word made flesh/ The babe, the Son of Mary.” I love how the gospel is present in this chorus.

“Lead Me To The Cross” – We closed out our services by responding with this song. Kelsey also did a great job leading on this song. This was another great match for Joe’s message this week, in which he emphasized that we need to preach the gospel to ourselves daily, in order to keep our focus in the right place, and to live a life that exemplifies the power of the gospel. The way I see it, everything in our walk with Christ is downstream from the gospel. When we have a proper view and appreciation of what Christ has accomplished for us, everything else falls into place. Let us keep our eyes on the cross.
Advent makes for some special worship times together. I love how it helps us focus on what Jesus gave for us, to rescue us and make a way for us where there was no way. It makes me think of Philippians 2: 5-11, which says,

“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point fo death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Our team did a great job as always. I love celebrating Advent with the Church. It’s a beautiful thing. I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were.

In the Son,
Bill

p.s. don’t forget to check out The Worship Community!

Here’s our set from this weekend:

Pre-Service Song- “Your Grace is Enough” (G) [Matt Maher]
Call to Worship
“Holy is the Lord” (G) [Chris Tomlin, Louie Giglio]
Welcome/Intro Special Guest
Video – Trash Mountain Project, “DR Thank You”
Guest – Brett Durbin, President of Trash Mountain Project
Announcements/Greeting Time
“Glory to God Forever” (A) [Steve Fee, Vicky Beeching]
“Our God” (A) [Jonas Myrin, Matt Redman, Chris Tomlin]
“Lead Me to the Cross” (D) [Brooke Fraser]
Message – “I Believe: God Empowers (Sanctification)” [Brian Tryhus]
Response – “Take My Life and Let It Be” (D) [Frances Ridley Havergal and Henri Abraham Cesar Malan]

This weekend we focused on how God empowers believers in the process of sanctification. Brian did a great job unpacking the truth of this doctrine, making it clear and laying all the cards on the table so everyone could understand it. I can honestly say that his message was one of the clearest explanations of sanctification I have heard. It’s a beautiful thing. I thought the songs that were planned communicated the same message well, and that the whole was unified and clear that our God is holy, and He is the one who makes us holy.

We also had my close friend, Brett Durbin, in to share about something happening with his missions organization (Trash Mountain Project). They have begun a child sponsorship program in which every dollar goes to feed and educate a child in the Dominican Republic called “Kids With a Hope.” Our church’s goal this weekend was to sponsor every child they have left to sponsor at the facility, which was somewhere around 140 kids. His organization has taken a risk and has not incorporated any administrative fees into the sponsorship fee, so every dollar goes to the kids. The sponsorship is $34 per month – $28 for food (2 meals and a snack per day) and $6 for education costs. In my family, we have been considering doing a sponsorship for a while, for our daughter to get connected to what God is doing in the rest of the world, so this was a no brainer. We are excited to finally find the right child to support, and we are excited that it is connected with Trash Mountain. Because of my daughter’s enthusiasm, I had to fight to hold it together during the last service this weekend. When she found out we were going to be sponsoring a child this morning, she ran upstairs and grabbed her piggy bank and said, “I want to give them all my money!” While it was only a few dollars, her generosity was truly beautiful. I am so proud of her. I was overwhelmed with thanksgiving for what God is doing in her life.

As far as the music part of worship goes, it was a great weekend. A highlight for me was when Sarah Oldberg and the band did a fantastic job on “Lead Me to the Cross,” which was a great connection with Brian’s message. He emphasized Romans 12:1-2, where Paul calls the church to offer their lives as living sacrifices. I took that and connected it with Jesus’ call to take up our cross daily and follow Him before we sung this song. I really love this song and its message, and how it connected with the weekend’s focus.

We spent most of the morning on songs that celebrate God’s grace, holiness, and greatness. We opened the pre-service time with Matt Maher’s “Your Grace Is Enough.” This was the first week that I didn’t sing the additional choruses from Chris Tomlin’s version, because I felt that they were more complicated and would make it more difficult for our people to participate. I think it was a good decision, and I will continue to sing it with just Maher’s chorus. After the call to worship, we moved to “Holy is the Lord,” which is a great and simple celebration of God’s holiness and the fact that His name will go out over all the earth. One day, everyone will understand His holiness.

The rest of the set consisted of “Glory to God Forever” and “Our God,” which each have elements of recognizing God’s greatness and of challenging us to go in boldness for His kingdom. The bridge of “Glory to God Forever” has become my favorite part of the song, and I consistently call our people to make this our prayer: “Take my life and let it be/ All for You and for Your glory/ Take my life and let it be Yours.” The only thing I would have changed would be the key. We tried these again in the key of A, when we have been doing them in the key of G most recently. There are parts of these songs that extend out of most people’s reach, so I think we’ll return to G in the future with these songs.

We also introduced an arrangement of “Take My Life and Let It Be,” which I have taken (and modified slightly) from Andrew Osenga from his days with The Normals. I have always loved this treatment of this great hymn, and it was a perfect opportunity to bring it in, because it really tied in with Brian’s message, and where he landed it. It is a great prayer for us to pray, as it focuses on different areas of our lives and how we can give them over to God and His purposes. The writers mention our lives, our hands, our feet, our mouths, our intellect, and our resources as means for worshiping God and building the kingdom of God –

Take my life and let it be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee
Take my moments and my days
Let them flow in ceaseless praise
Let them flow in ceaseless praise

Take my hands and let them move
At the impulse of Thy love
Take my feet and let them be
Swift and beautiful for Thee
Swift and beautiful for Thee

Take my voice and let me sing
Always, only, for my King
Take my lips and let them be
Filled with messages from Thee
Filled with messages from Thee

Take my silver and my gold
Not a mite would I withhold
Take my intellect and use
Ev’ry power as You choose
Ev’ry power as You choose

May this be the prayer of our lives, that every aspect of us would be poured out as an offering of worship to our great God!

In the Son,

Bill
p.s. Be sure to check out what other leaders did this weekend at Sunday Set Lists!