This week was Transfiguration Sunday, which, fittingly, is the Sunday we read and reflect on the story of Jesus' Transfiguration in front of Peter, James, and John. Our songs, in one way or another, focused on the glory of God. Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is Amazing Grace by Phil Wickham
All the Poor and Powerless by All Sons and Daughters
The Transfiguration by Sufjan Stevens
Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light
How They Fit In:
There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme.
How Great Thou Art: We sang this song to begin our time together singing about the grandeur of God, which is precisely what is at the center of the Transfiguration story.
This is Amazing Grace: We sang this song to think of the glory of God in a different way. While the Transfiguration points to a visually spectacular display of the glory of God in association with Jesus, we may find a much more accurate picture of God's glory in placing descriptions of God's cosmic power side-by-side with a description of God's grace in the sending of Jesus to set things right with us. This is a Transfiguration all its own when the God whom we have every reason to fear is revealed as the God who loves fiercely and is in the habit of choosing grace over destruction.
All the Poor and Powerless: We sang this song to reiterate a primary theme from the previous song--that, while the Transfiguration shows Jesus infused with power and glory, He came to those who have neither of those things in life. So, lest they assume that their lack of prestige or "good luck" is a reflection of God's opinion of them, they too witness a Transfiguration when Jesus snubs the social and religious elite and takes notice instead of the nobodies.
The Transfiguration: This song is a real jewel in that it essentially just narrates the Transfiguration without coming off as trite. This is why we sang it, but I'd also like to point out the portion of the song that focuses on the cloud descending on the mountain. Sufjan leans into the visceral side of this experience that includes the confusion and perhaps terror of being in the midst of this cloud that is talking, with this barrage of repetitive and mysterious phrases. Also, if you haven't heard Sufjan Stevens play this song, please look it up.
Wayward Ones: We sing this song every time we take communion to remind ourselves of a couple of things. First, we are a broken people--though we are seeking to become more like Jesus, we often fail at this. Second, Christ has given Himself for us despite our brokenness. We take communion to remember the sacrifice of Jesus on our behalf, even though we did not, and do not, deserve it.
Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.