This was the fifth Sunday after Pentecost, and our songs were gathered around the theme of perseverance (this is the best one-word way I could think of to describe this--more broadly, they were gathered around the theme of clinging to faith in the midst of difficulty). Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, 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.
Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints
Fall Afresh by Jeremy Riddle
Noise by Jameson McGregor
Hope (There Will Come A Light) by Jameson McGregor
Future/Past by John Mark McMillan
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.
Amazing Grace: We sang this song to proclaim the saving work of God in our lives, and to cite the ways that God has been faithful to us in our stories as cause to expect God to continue to be faithful to us.
Fall Afresh: We sang this song to ask the Spirit to continually renew our zeal for life, to provide strength to press on through woundedness, and to transform our hearts of stone into hearts that are attuned to the movement of God.
Noise: This song traces out the gap between what is it to be God and what it is to be us, acknowledges our tendency to make broken promises of our lives, and rejoices in the reality that God continually works to repair us. As no recorded version of this song exists, you can listen to it again through this video:
Hope (There Will Come A Light): Before I played this song, I read the following preface:
In December, we enter the season of Advent, where we sort of put blinders on and enter a drama where Jesus has not yet come. During this time, we look around and see how dark the world is and how it very badly needs a Light. And then on Christmas, God puts a light in the darkness. Over the next few months, we watch the Light grow, until, on Good Friday, the Light is snuffed out. But then, on Easter, the Light comes blazing back onto the scene, and we see that things are changed. And they are. But sometimes this feels less true than others. Like the Kingdom of Heaven, this change is already and not-yet. It’s as if Hope has been planted in the midst of creation. Paul gives us an image of history being “pregnant”—Hope is among us and it is growing. And so, we wait. We wait for a Birth. And now the story has circled back on itself, hasn’t it? In a minute, I’m going to play an Advent song called “Hope,” because we carry the longing of Advent with us all the time, and—even through grit teeth—it is fitting to proclaim that a Light will come into this darkness.
Future/Past: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs. This is what we said about Future/Past then: This song presents the grandeur of God and underscores the fact that God has called us "friends." Taken with the idea of God's faithfulness, this song bolsters our assurance that God is with us in the same way in the midst of the joy and the pain of life, and that, just as our past has been marked by this, we can remain confident that our future will be as well.
Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.