preacherman

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Songs of Worship

I think about songs that we sings in church both "traditional" (older) and "contemporary"(newer); I am always up lifted and drawn closer to God. I sing the song whether it be traditional or contemporary. When leading singing I lead both equally contemporary and traditional. As we enter worship on Sunday mornings I try to get our congregation focus on God the One reason in which we come. Yes, as I (the Christian) worship God, I get uplifted, encouraged, strengthen, challenged in my faith and relationship with God; but the focus is on God. He is the One we are giving our praise. In some churches, I am glad that it doesn't happen at our Church, but some I have visited; Christians refuse to sing newer songs. Why? Is it the right attitude to have? If you think about it, "Amazing Grace"; "The Old Rugged Cross"; and "How Great Thou Art" where once new songs. We must have the right heart and attitude when we worship the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We must remember that it is not about us. It is about God and His Son Jesus Christ who died and rose on the third day so that we might have life abundantly.

What song do you like to sing to God? What is your favorite song? Is there a song that you remember as a child that has influenced your life and relationship with God? What is your favorite traditional song? What is your favorite contemporary song? Is there a song that you like to be sung before the Lord's supper, if so, what is it? Is there a song that touched your heart and made you think about becoming a Christian? What invitation song did you respond to the Lord?

What do you think?
Share your thoughts.

45 Comments:

Blogger Alan said...

There is great irony in the fact that most of the songs we love so much (whether traditional or contemporary) were written by people that most of our tribe would not even consider Christian. Yet they were moved to pen words that call us higher in our devotion and appreciation of God.

4:22 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Alan,
You are so right.
Examples would be:
John Newton
Micheal W. Smith
Fanny J. Crosby
Martin Luther
Charles Wesley
And on and on.......
Alan great point.
We praise God despite who wrote it. God is glorified by the authenticity of our hearts. I am thankful for those people were inspired and gifted write the music that we sing and new music that we sing today.

4:33 PM  
Blogger Bird said...

As far as modern songs go, I like How Great is Our God.

Christmas songs, Hark The Herald Angels Sing.

Classic hymns, Holy Holy Holy.

7:35 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Great thoughts, Kinney. There are songs both contemporary & traditional that I LOVE and there are songs both contemporary & traditional that I loathe. To be perfectly honest, I can get more upbeat from some of the newer songs, but I think it's just 'cause I have a tendency to get bored with things and want change. There are some older songs that don't make sense to me because of the language or because the tune doesn't match the message. But there are some newer songs that are somewhat complicated harmonies that I don't like the sound of.

So, to answer your questions: "The Joy of the Lord" & "Magnificat" are two of my favorite "new" songs. "Home of the Soul," "Peace Perfect Peace," & "Paradise Valley" are some of my favorite older songs. I'm not sure if my favorite "devo-type" songs from my days of summer camp are considered old or new, but they touch my emotions in different ways because of the place I was at the time.

7:43 PM  
Blogger NaNcY said...

oh...i like to sing the songs that God gives me. there are some songs that when i go to a church gathering that i change the words a little bit sometimes...so i guess i like to kinda say my own praises to God. suppose there could be a gathering where there is not written songs...just praising time...mix it up, change it around...keep em guessin!

8:04 PM  
Blogger Benjie said...

Excellent post. This has been a fight in American churches for several years. So much so that some have gone to holding two worship services--"Contemporary" and "Traditional". Our church has what they call a "Blended" service which uses both types of music. The problem with it is that the "contemporary" songs that we sing are mostly twenty years old or more. We also have a tendency not to sing them as well.

Personally, I love almost anything that lifts my attention to God. Fanny Crosby is one of my favorites. I also enjoy the way some worship leaders have arranged newer tunes to sing some of the older hymns to. A favorite of mine falls into this category--"Jesus, I Am Resting, Resting." It's an old hymn that has been revitalized by a couple of tune writers, but the words just take you to the throne.

One of my pet peeves is singing "with feeling" which means slow it down, but doesn't necessarily equal worship.

8:23 PM  
Blogger Terry said...

Since we received our son, I have sung "I Stand in Awe" every night as I rock him and put him to bed. I also love "Amazing Grace," "How Great Thou Art," "There's a Stirring," and many others. Good post, Preacherman.

9:38 PM  
Blogger cwinwc said...

Looks like most of my favorites have been listed by others. Anything written by Keith or Melody Green has a special place in my heart. Keith Green was one of the original Contemporary Christian artists of the late 70’s and early 80’s. Most of his songs you could preach and they played a large part in my ongoing transition from a casual Christian to a more (work in progress) devoted follower of Christ.

9:53 PM  
Blogger NaNcY said...

JESUS IN THE SONG IN MY HEART! I DON'T NEED THOSE OLD SONGS..OR THOSE NEW SONGS EITHER, MAN...BECAUSE...I HAVE THE MASTER OF SONG IN MY HEART. LET MY HEART SING, LET MY HEART SING, LET MY HEART SING! PRAISE GOD! YES, I WANT TO PRAISE THE ALMIGHTY GOD FOR THE SONG IN MY HEART! YAAAAHOOOO! KEEP EM GUESSIN, PREACHERMAN! GOD BLESS YOU.

10:44 PM  
Blogger Paula Harrington said...

My favorite traditional song has to be The New Song or Ring Out the Message. The newer probably Prince of Peace. My favorite song is Face to Face by the Ambassodors from FHU. It's a song from Jesus to us and it's one of the most moving songs I've ever heard, I used to have it but have lost it. would love it again if anyone has a copy. I would buy it.

11:28 PM  
Blogger Neva said...

I love "Faithful Love" (#18 in Faith and Praise) I have loved it since the first time I read the words, even before I heard the tune. It is truly a beautiful song. I sing it all the time.
Other than that, my favorites change all the time.
Peace
Neva
hope you are feeling better

11:35 PM  
Blogger jel said...

morning preacherman,

I love to sing and hear the older songs, and a few contemporary songs

some of my favs, are Beulah land, The Lighthouse, and I like what Chris Rice sings, ( The Cartoon song ) is a kid's song but I like it,

have a great day! and a safe weekend

5:53 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Benjie,
I think it is sad when churches fight over style or preference of music. When a stupid thing such as style of worship causes division in church shows where the focus really is on "I" instead of "GOd". As I mentioned before worship is about God and for God. I believe he doesn't intend for there to be Churches within Churches on the basis on styles of or preferences of music. We need not let our oppinion or preferences divide us.

9:53 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Some of my favorite songs are Faithful Love, Listen To Our Hearts, Break My Heart, We Shall Assemble, New Song, Our God He Is Alive, Ring Out The Message.

I hold dear some songs because they were dear to those that I love that have gone on. My granny's favorite: When All The God's Singers Get Home.

When working in prison ministry the prisoners loved to sing: "I'll Fly Away", especially verse 2 "Like a bird from prison bars have flown, I'll fly away." :-)

9:58 AM  
Blogger NaNcY said...

sorry pm. ...i do get a little carried away with my self now and again. thank you for your paitence with my learning.

10:13 AM  
Blogger Darin L. Hamm said...

Jesus is Lord

It was in this song that I heard the gospel preached for the first time.

"He was born to die on Calvary
To redeem a lost humanity
Conquering death
He rose triumphantly
Now He reigns for all eternity."

It was in these lyrics that I finally understood the story was about redemption not about getting a bunch of arbitrary concepts correct. Thank God He is Lord.

10:24 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Nancy,
Totally, cool.

11:44 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Darin,
Wow. Those lyrics are so powerful. I think it would make any person understand the story of redemption. Thank you for sharing your story with us all. I greatly appreciate it.

11:46 AM  
Blogger Kansas Bob said...

Some of my recent favorites:

Everlasting God

How Great is Our God

Blessed By Your Name

Forever

I Stand in Awe

12:16 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Bob,
I love Stand in Awe.

12:47 PM  
Blogger TREY MORGAN said...

Preacherman,

I have mixed emotions about the songs. I've considered posting about it, but haven't yet.

I will be honest and tell you that I get very frustrated when I sing songs that are so old that I cannot understand them. When they use words and terminology that my children can understand either. I don't believe God ever wanted His teaching or His followers to be confused. When I sing a song that doesn't make sense to me, I often don't sing. I'm uncomfortable singing something to God that I don't know what is? What if I told God somethings I didn't believe or think?

I don't mind the traditional songs as long as they make sense and don't have words we can't understand.

I do love the new praise songs. I love the fact that they are focused on God. Most of the newer songs we sing to God, and many of the older songs are songs about God.

Those are my thoughts.

3:37 PM  
Blogger Monalea said...

Preacherman,

I'm glad you brought this topic up. I love singing all songs to God. When I get to heaven I want to fully grasp how much God enjoys our singing praises to Him.

Monalea

4:19 PM  
Blogger Mike Miller said...

Preacherman,

This is a tough one for me, because I am part of a generation that is supposed to be all about the new songs. I try to judge each song (regardless of age) on its merit and relevance and leave my biases out. I am not always successful at this, of course. I tend to come down in favor of older songs.

I love all of the "heaven" and "glory" songs: "When We All Get to Heaven," "Sing to Me of Heaven," "I'll Live in Glory," "Salvation Has Been Brought Down," etc. Of the newer songs, I am partial to "As The Deer" and "The Greatest Commands." Out of the older songs, "He Leadeth Me" has a special place in my heart. I was baptized on a Tuesday night with just my family and a few friends present. When I came up out of the water, they immediately started singing "He Leadeth Me." To this day I still choke up when I think about it.

11:35 PM  
Blogger NaNcY said...

right now i like are you washed in the blood on the alan jackson, precious memories cd. also on that album is turn your eyes upon Jesus and leaning on the everlasting arms, i like those, also. from growing up in the methodist chruch, i would like to hear my mom and dad sing some of the old ones again. from college freak days there were some good praise songs of the day in mid 70's. so there is old, older, and realy old! it was good how we could sing a song together and then we were all caught up like a still presence of power in a quiet way and be saying praises to God. makes my heart feel good just to think about it.

3:01 PM  
Blogger Ted M. Gossard said...

I like so many songs it's hard to pull one out. And I like what you say, Preacherman, about us focusing on God so that worship controversies can be avoided. It's not about us, but about God.

I do think it's not about entertainment either, though I don't mind rock instruments, or just an organ or piano.

6:24 AM  
Blogger preacherman said...

I appreciate everyone comments. I believe God desires us worship him with all of our hearts. Priasing him with all we have. It is our hearts he looks at when we worship him. I know it is my desire to focus more on how my heart is when I worship and how God might be please with the congregations worship as a whole as we plan out the things we do. I know today we had a very uplifting worship and I really felt God was glorified. I am so thankful for those men who volunteer and willinging give their talents to direct the congregation in song, prayers, thought of communion, it was such a great day. I hope your Lord's Day was as blessed as mine.

8:42 PM  
Blogger Liz Moore said...

At Highland Oaks we have a great blend of songs. And the older ones are ones with meaning. I agree with Trey in that some of the older songs you can't even understand. It makes it very hard to praise and worship God when you don't know what you are really singing about. One of my favorite songs is "Deeper in Love". It's fairly new although it's been around for several years. The chorus is...

Take me deeper, deeper in love with you;
Jesus, hold me close to Your embrace.
Take me deeper,
Deeper than I've ever been before;
I just want to love you more & more;
How I long to be deeper in love.

It really speaks to my heart. In fact, I think I may blog about that song soon ;) Have a great week!

4:02 PM  
Blogger mmlace said...

Preacherman, I just want you to know that I really appreciate this post and all the comments from everyone! Not sure that I can answer any of your questions that you asked...because there are SO MANY songs, both traditional and contemporary, that each have a special place in my heart for different reasons!

It did catch my eye, though, that someone in the comments mentioned "Jesus Is Lord." That song had a very profound effect on me, as well. It wasn't necessarily the invitation song before I was baptized. But I was baptized at a church camp, and I heard that song, as though I was hearing it for the first time, the night before I was baptized.

Thanks to everyone for sharing your thoughts! Much love!--mmlace

9:10 PM  
Blogger NaNcY said...

i sometimes have to make myself get past singing a song that the words are not mine...or do not match what i am doing....like, when a song sings something like, i want to bow down...or lift my hands, and it seems like even if i am there, the group is not open to doing that. anyway what i am trying to say is that if the songs could reflect just very simply the praising God to bring all in the gathering together in the Spirit then maybe the worship would be more unified. the hearts could be brought toghether and the mind would follow. the song has to start out being a song that all can agree and identify with the words being said to bring unity.

10:20 AM  
Blogger David Kirk said...

#377 He Still Came. It's a great song.

12:01 AM  
Blogger NaNcY said...

ya know..i really like a lot of the songs on the randy travis cd "worship and faith". it is nice to sing along while driving.

8:52 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

David Kirk,
I love that song.
One of my favorites is 728b. :-)

10:07 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Nancy,
I'll have to get the CD.
It sounds like it is a good one to listen to while driving.
One of the things that I done on Sunday morning is listen to the Message on XM Radio. It is nothing but praise music. It gets me in the frame of mind to get ready for church and to preach.

10:10 PM  
Blogger preacherman said...

Oh,
by the way XM Radio play's alot of club mix's on suday morning of "How Great Thou Art" I didn't know that the younger youth like that song so much. Crazy what teens like.

10:11 PM  
Blogger God's Flame said...

Interesting. Songs of worship. Yes, I must say I have been guilty in times past, of not singing certain contemporary songs "in church" because I believed it did not honor God but brought glory to the flesh. I didn't grow up in church but I did grow up in the south and was some- what influenced by southern gospel music..my grandfather was a baptist preacher. I felt it was those old songs that always moved me, and so it must be what moves God? I've been saved for 14 years and have recently learned that true worship come from the heart, and since God is the only one that can see the heart..how can we be sure if God is not receiving that praise. Yes I love Amazing Grace, what a friend we have in Jesus, and I also love the contemporary sounds of Fred hammond, Israel, commissoned an many others. God is a spirit and those that worship Him, must worship Him in spirit and truth.

10:53 PM  
Blogger jerry said...

Thanks for the comment on my blog! Songs - I don't know if there are any favorites - it depends on the day, mood, etc for me. Sometimes I like to sing "When I Survey.." before / during the Lords Supper or at times I prefer a couple of minutes of silence. Although, one of the old songs I am loving right now is "O Thou Fount" What great lyrics. New song - Here I Am to Worship.
keep seeking!

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