You’ve probably noticed I have introduced quite a few new songs to our worship services over the past few weeks and months. Here at Ebenezer we sort of have an established “tradition” of the pastor choosing the final song of the worship service. I thought I would take a moment to share some of my thoughts that guide my selection process.
The first thing I strive to do is to pick a song with words that fit with that morning’s message. I view that time as a way for the congregation to respond to the message that I believe God has for us that morning. I will often read through the lyrics of multiple songs and prayerfully consider which one I believe will best help us affirm God’s calling to us.
I also consider the tempo and music of the song. Is it upbeat and celebratory, or is it more quiet and reflective? What music best reflects of the “mood” of the morning?
Lastly, I look at what we have sung recently in our worship services. It is tough to balance singing a song frequently enough that it is familiar to us and infrequently enough that it is memorable when we sing! If you would look at the music for our worship services over the past couple of years, you would find that most mornings we sing a hymn, an older praise song or two, and a more contemporary praise song or two. I think our worship committee does a great job of finding the right balance!
So, that’s roughly my thinking, although I’ll admit that my personal preferences can’t help but come into play as well. Whenever I do choose a new song, I’ll try to continue to have the lyrics printed on the bulletin insert, so if it isn’t familiar you can read along as we sing. I know that following a new song from the screen up front can be a bit challenging.
Here at Ebenezer we have a blended worship service, one that continues to cherish the hymns of the faith while also recognizing that God is still gifting men and women to write and play moving works that allow us to express our faith and gratitude to God in song. I trust that we will continue to have such a worship service for a long time to come…long enough that “Diamonds” by Hawk Nelson is one day considered an old song!
And although I can’t say for sure what song I will pick this week…I’m pretty sure it is going to have something to with Victory in Jesus!
Here’s what’s happening…
1. Choir Practice for the Christmas Cantata continues every Monday night at 7pm.
2. Harvest Fest prep work begins this Thursday night from 6:30-8pm. The big event is on 10/25. We are also collecting candy for the Harvest Fest. You can place it next to our usual food collection box for CVCCS.
3. Worship Committee meeting this Thursday at 6:30 pm.
4. Sunday, 10/7 is a Communion Sunday.
5. On Sunday, October 7 there will be a light lunch served in the fellowship hall for all who are new to Ebenezer and would like to learn more about our church, our denomination, and our vision for the future! If you are thinking about connecting at Ebenezer at a deeper level, this lunch is for YOU! Please let me know if you are coming so we can have plenty of food. We will be done by 12:45.
6. Ministry Council Meeting on Tuesday, 10/9.
7. Congregational Life Commission Meeting on Tuesday, 10/16.
8. Ebenezer At Home - There will be an organizational/training meeting on Wednesday, October 17 from 6:30 -7:30 in the annex for anyone interested being a part of the visitation team. I’ll be sharing some thoughts on what to do (and what to avoid) during a visit and talking about how to respond to delicate situations when visiting someone.
9. It’s Operation Christmas Child time again…we will be collect shoeboxes for Samaritan’s Purse on November 11.
Our passage for this Sunday is Nehemiah 5. Nehemiah is faced with another challenge as he seeks to lead the rebuild of Jerusalem. The poor of the land are being oppressed…by their own people. We’ll be looking at how he handles the situation and learning what God expects of us in similar circumstances.