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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Sunday Song Devotions - June 13, 2010

I've been a bit under the weather this week, so this post is late - sorry.  But better late than never definitely.

I absolutely love each of the songs chosen for Sunday's service.  I love that each of them flows into the next and they all tie together.  Although it is not always the case, I often try to take a sort of journey with the songs that I choose for a Sunday morning.  I believe that worship is our response to who God is and what God has done.  Considering that definition, it is important to start with who God is and what God has done and then it is an easy transition to begin to think (or sing) about what that means to us in the here and now.  So that's what Sunday's music was all about. 

We began our service with a celebratory song about God's holiness (Holy is the Lord).  This song, written by Chris Tomlin and Louie Giglio reminds me of the verse in Isaiah 6 that says, "And they were calling to one another: 'Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory." (Isa 6:3). 
I especially love the bridge of this song that says, "It's rising up all around, it's the anthem of the Lord's renown."  The words, though a bit complicated and fancy simply are saying that we (the Lord's renown) are raising up an anthem of praise for the Holy One.  Beautiful.

Next comes I Stand Amazed in the Presence and My Jesus, I Love Thee.  Both of these songs are all about what God has done through Jesus Christ.  My Jesus, I Love Thee is one of my favorite hymns because of the simplicity and tenderness of the lyrics.  It was written by a man named William Featherston, who was actually sixteen at the time!  As far as we know this is the only hymn written by him in his short life - he died at the age of 26. 

I have had the awesome privilege of leading worship for middle, high school and college students for several years.  There is something so authentic about the worship that students bring.  It always amazed me how they, who are so young, can be so beautifully passionate about Jesus.  It's no wonder that youth are the ones who start revivals.  They are the ones who can change the world with that kind of passion - Just as William Featherston wrote a song that has been affecting lives and hearts for over 100 years!

Immediately after singing about what God has already done through the cross, we continue in worship of the Lamb who WAS and IS and IS TO COME by singing the song, Revelation Song

I love that picture.  From the cross to the second coming - He is and was and forever will be the Holy One - the Almighty - the Only One worthy of our worship!

I found an article written by Jenny Lee Riddle, the author of Revelation Song, that details how the song came to be and what it means to her.  Here's a part of her article:

I, again, began telling Him how much I wanted to SEE and HEAR all creation worshipping Him. The songs being sung by the Bride at that time were focusing on need. My heart longed to focus on something far greater than my need, knowing that all needs would be satisfied with just one glimpse of Him.

Therefore, I asked the Holy Spirit to help me write a song that painted Him; a song that the angels and creation were already singing, so that we could join in with One Voice, as One Bride, to One King.  My heart recalled Ezekiel 1:26-28 and Revelation 4:

“And then, as they stood with folded wings, there was a voice from above the dome over their heads. Above the dome there was something that looked like a throne, sky-blue like a sapphire, with a humanlike figure towering above the throne. From what I could see, from the waist up he looked like burnished bronze and from the waist down like a blazing fire. Brightness everywhere! The way a rainbow springs out of the sky on a rainy day—that's what it was like. It turned out to be the Glory of God! (Message)

“…a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. And He who sat there was[like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald. Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and on the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white robes; and they had crowns[] of gold on their heads. And from the throne proceeded lightenings, thunderings, and voices… Before the throne there was a sea of glass, like crystal… And in the midst of the throne, and around the throne, were four living creatures… And they do not rest day or night, saying: ‘ Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!’…”

I put the baby down to play with his toys, picked up the guitar, and began to play four chords I had “discovered” the day before. Immersed in those scriptures, the Lord helped me paint what I was seeing through those passages," Clothed in rainbows of living color, flashes of lightening, rolls of thunder..." The melody stuck. It had the sound of heaven in it. The song wouldn’t leave me and I sang it for weeks.

... (and my favorite part of the article):

“Revelation Song” has taken on a life of its own, and it has been an intense joy to watch the Father “grow it up”, and to hear the Voice of the Bride sing to Jesus; Her voice is so lovely.  I often get asked the song story, and even more often, the question of “how” it got “out there” comes up.  My only answer is that God chooses what He chooses.  No amount of maneuvering, strategizing, posturing, or pitching would have gotten my music “out there”… whatever that means.  I remember telling Jesus with complete sincerity that I could wait until I got to heaven to hear my song sung (although, I also suggested that it would be a terrific song for the angels and great cloud of witnesses to sing when He comes back for us…In the event that He had not already chosen one for the occasion, I didn’t think it would hurt to ask!).

for the full text of the article, or for more articles by Jenny Lee, visit the link below:


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