Songs for Sunday, July 31 @ Christ Community Church

Here are our Scriptures and songs:

  • Scripture | Psalm 30

I will extol you, O LORD, for you have drawn me up
and have not let my foes rejoice over me.
O LORD my God, I cried to you for help,
and you have healed me.
O LORD, you have brought up my soul from Sheol;
you restored me to life from among those who
go down to the pit.

Sing praises to the LORD, O you his saints,
and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger is but for a moment,
and his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may tarry for the night,
but joy comes with the morning.

As for me, I said in my prosperity,
“I shall never be moved.”
By your favor, O LORD,
you made my mountain stand strong;
you hid your face;
I was dismayed.

To you, O LORD, I cry,
and to the Lord I plead for mercy:
“What profit is there in my death,
if I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise you?
Will it tell of your faithfulness?
10 Hear, O LORD, and be merciful to me!
O LORD, be my helper!”

11 You have turned for me my mourning into dancing;
you have loosed my sackcloth
and clothed me with gladness,
12 that my glory may sing your praise and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give thanks to you forever!

  • Scripture | John 1:9-14

The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

  • Invitation/Preparation for Lord’s Supper | Behold the Lamb (Communion Hymn)
    Scripture References / Inspiration for the Song: 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, John 1:29, 1 Peter 1:19, 1 Peter 2:24, Revelation 13:8, Isaiah 53:5-7, 1 John 1:9, Ephesians 2:4-9, Ephesians 4:1, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, Colossians 3:14, 1 John 1:7, Psalm 51:1-2, 1 Thessalonians 5:15-18, Luke 9:23-27, 1 Corinthians 12:12-13, Philippians 3:10

If you have not been gathering, consider gathering with your church family again. We have a 10:00 Bible study where Jamie Harrison is walking us through the book of Revelation. If you are at-risk, this Bible study would be perfect for you so you can spread out (and even dip out the side door before the 11:00 worship gathering begins).

Thinking on Loss, Burnout, & Gospel Recovery

Disclaimer – This post is filled with feelings of lost. Understand that if you are looking for typical JKH writing, this is not it. This is dealing with intense feelings and will likely be updated as these feelings continue to be dealt with.

This morning, I woke up with high expectations for today. An Uber was scheduled to pick my family up from our hotel and take us to Passion City Church in Atlanta, GA; from there we would take in our first Braves game. It has been a beautiful day filled with laughter and sunshine. We heard a riveting example of John 1:14 at church. We shared in ridiculously large pieces of pizza and great tacos. Then, about halfway through the game, I was confronted by the enormity and finality of loss.

If one could add together the analogies of the feelings of being hit by a freight train and having one’s train derailed, you might get close to what loss feels like. And, as jarring as mine was, there are family members and friends much closer to the friend I lost than I, and my heart goes out to them. I pray for them in the aftermath of this loss that they will continue to feel more and more through the next few days, months, and years.

I had not talked to this friend more than in a few passing conversations on Facebook in a few years. Every time we saw one another, we embraced and were thoroughly glad to see each other. I kept up with him through social media. He did the same with me. Again, passing messages and participating in each other’s social media presences was the limit to our interactions for a few years.

We knew each other well when I was youth pastor at Duck Hill Baptist and he was a youth. We spent hours together each week. We talked about the Bible, movies, books, food, and life. We experienced joys together, and we experienced hurt and loss. When he was in trouble during his high school years and on through early adulthood, he knew he could call me and did when he needed me. We stood in ditches together with backward-facing cars in tall weeds. We stood together when parents arrived after the wrong place and time had been experienced. We rode together after vehicles had broken, even after our friendship began to feel a bit more distant. Then, he grew up, and I left Duck Hill. He grew up, and time and distance grew us farther apart.

I have reflected a lot on those years spent at Duck Hill, wondering where I went wrong. So many of those youth went their separate ways, and friendships began to become distant as well.

I was burned out at the end of my time there and did not realize it until I fully burned out in Picayune, moving back here hoping to leave ministry behind for good. There were so many battles fought during those Duck Hill years, so many foolish idols taking center stage instead of what was important. In the past, angrily, I have pointed the finger so many places, but the only blame I can place is on myself for being sidetracked by the idolatry of others and creating idolatry of my own. The fight initially took my focus, but I made it my focus all by myself. And a lot of kids I was responsible for discipling took on the fight themselves and lost a little in the effort.

God graciously redeemed my burnout and lit a fire in my heart that was never truly there in those Duck Hill years. I get to do all of the things that I actively did during those years. I get to lead worship, get to disciple, get to preach and teach the Word. But I do not get to fight any more. God has allowed me to get to make contact with many of those former youth from that era, including the friend that I lost. And I have gotten to reflect with some of them on how I feel like I failed them. But, now, I am thankful to begin to see how God has redeemed even my burnout. I am thankful I got to share that with my friend while he was alive.

I cannot un-live my past. But, praise God, He is redeeming my present and holds my future. I cannot un-lose my friend. But I can redeem the time I have with my friends.

If you are reading this and you were a youth when I was a youth pastor, I want to share with you what I was too foolish to understand then. I was never meant to be your primary example; I was supposed to point you to Christ. I was not supposed to be a role model of works-based theology but a living embodiment of preaching the grace of salvation by faith in Jesus Christ alone.

I find my older, present-day self thinking more and more of the value of Paul’s writings in 1 and 2 Corinthians, namely these two passages that follow here.

1 Corinthians 1:26-31:

“For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, ‘Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.’”

During those years at Duck Hill, I pridefully built up a workaholic persona that was “wise according to worldly standards” but foolish according to God’s. I prided myself on how much of the Lord’s work I could do in my own strength only to find out that the Lord deigned sometimes to bless my work with His strength and all of the other times I wasted by showing works over grace. I boasted how much closer to God I was than those who touted their idolatry only to make an idol of the fight itself. Thankfully, he has allowed me to be broken to the point of realizing that I am only “in Christ Jesus” because of His grace, mercy, and love. I no longer want to boast in my strength because “what is weak” has shamed me. I no longer want to boast in my wisdom because foolishness has shamed me. I want my only boast to “boast in the Lord” and Him alone.

The second passage is Jesus’ words to Paul (and what Paul learned through the experience), recorded in 2 Corinthians 12:9-10:

“But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

I cannot go back and undo my past. And I do not need to. My weakness, foolishness, and, yes, even my failures have been a proving ground for the grace of God. He has proven that He is enough while I am not.

It is tempting to make a plea to reach out and help those who I may have led astray following my early pastoral example. But my strength now is still weakness. But, praise be to God, I can rejoice in the words of Christ – that His grace is sufficient and His power is made perfect in weakness. Rather than pointing you to me for more foolhardy examples, I point you to Christ and boast in Him. I pray you are able to find Him.

If you are reading this and have no idea what I am talking about, that is okay, too. Sometimes I get to write to get my feelings out because it is the only way I can. This is one of those times. I pray that God can use this foolishness for His Kingdom.

Songs for Sunday, June 20 – Father’s Day 2021

I have been blessed to be a father for a little over eleven years now and to be around the church my entire life. You would think the two would go hand-in-hand, but often the church clashes with fathers.

This Sunday around the country, churches will be trying to exhort and encourage fathers, but it will come across as more of a rebuke and a bashing of fatherhood. That’s not what we’re going for this Sunday at Christ Community Church. We are going to worship our heavenly Father for the work of His Son in the power of His Spirit – and, hopefully, encourage some earthly dads to learn from Him as we do.

One of the things that has changed my perspective from rebuking/bashing in the name of statistics/warnings to encouraging/exhorting in the name of discipleship is my own experience as a father. You see, I do not need statistics to tell me of fatherly failures – I have been one many times and, unfortunately, will fail again. I want to look briefly at two passages today that show me that there is hope in the Father to make me (and anyone who knows and follow Him) a godly father.

Galatians 4:4-7 tells us,

But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

No matter how much of a failure I am as a father, I am a child of the King and He is not a failure. The fact that His Fatherly love sent His Son to redeem me is a gift sufficient enough to account for my continued failings. After all, if He can bring me from life to death, if He is willing – in love – to adopt His enemy as His Son, is redeeming my care, parenting, and discipleship of my children too big for Him to accomplish? No! He has not just redeemed me but given me His Spirit to know when to cry out to Him like a child to a Father. And that same Spirit works in my heart toward my own children.

Deuteronomy 6:4-7 says,

“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

Being a godly father begins when, because we have been adopted/born again/saved, we worship God and love Him. This is not a Sunday-only deal. When we look at Moses’ declaration to fathers in Deuteronomy 6, he illustrates that one loves “the LORD [their] God” while they are talking to their children, while they are going about their day-to-day, while they are laying down to bed, and when they get up in the mornings. Worship is a lifestyle, and the lifestyle of a dad is a classroom for our kids. God is calling us to love Him in such a way that even our failures (and necessary repentance) point to Him!

That’s good news because I have plenty of failures but the Father has plenty of grace! And the more time I spend with my Father the better my kids’ father will be because the time spent with one’s father forms their future – for good or for bad.

So, that’s what we’ll be singing about and to this Sunday morning. We’ll lift high the name of our King Jesus by looking at the glorious love of the Father. Amen.

Here are our Scriptures & Songs:

  • Praying Scripture | Matthew 6:9-13 (KJV for familiarity) —

Our Father which art in Heaven,
Hallowed be Thy name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done in earth,
as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil:

For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever.

  • Scripture Reading | John 14:1-6

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

  • Scripture Reading | 2 Corinthians 1:3-5

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.

  • Scripture Reading | Galatians 4:4-7

But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

We invite you to join us this Sunday at Christ Community Church in Grenada, MS!

We have two services Sunday morning!

  • 8:00a for those who prefer greater social distancing and masks worn by all
  • 11:00a for everyone else

Songs for Sunday, May 2, 2021

If you are in or around the Grenada, MS area tomorrow morning, we would like to invite you to join us at Christ Community Church! Everyone is welcome!

Thinking on the Scripture passages that we are reading in worship in the morning, I hope it is evident that our goal is to point to Jesus — to point to Him only.

His name is to be praised forever (Psalm 113:2-3).

He, despite being God (John 1:1), humbled Himself – laid His divine glory and splendor aside – coming in human form to dwell among us (John 1:14) to live for us and die in our place (Philippians 2:5-8).

His loving sacrifice as our Substitute – according to the will of God the Father – set His name above every other name, making Him the ultimate object of worship for all of time (Philippians 2:9-11).

His name – that name above every other name – is the name of salvation. There is no salvation apart from Him (Acts 4:12).

Not only is His name above every other, but it becomes a synonym for hope! Nothing on earth can shake those who are His because He is the Creator. He is forever faithful. He executes justice, frees captives, gives sight to the blind, lifts the oppressed, loves the righteous, adopts the sojourner, husbands the widow, fathers the fatherless, and rightly handles the wicked. Simply put, He is the Sovereign, Holy, Omnipotent, Glorious God of the universe for all of time and into eternity. (Psalm 146:4-10)

If you find salvation in Him alone, He frees you from the sin that enslaved you. You are a slave to sin no more. He redeems you – has already paid the price for you, but He does not Lord ownership over you, instead adopting you as His child. And – this is good news – if He sets you free, you – are – FREE (John 8:34-36)!

Here’s what we are signing tomorrow:

  • Psalm 113:2-3

Blessed be the name of the Lord
from this time forth and forevermore!
From the rising of the sun to its setting,
the name of the Lord is to be praised!

  • Philippians 2:5-11

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

  • Acts 4:12

12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

  • Psalm 146:4-10

When his breath departs, he returns to the earth;
on that very day his plans perish.

    Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord his God,
    who made heaven and earth,
the sea, and all that is in them,
       who keeps faith forever;
        who executes justice for the oppressed,
who gives food to the hungry.

       The Lord sets the prisoners free;
        the Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
       The Lord lifts up those who are bowed down;
the Lord loves the righteous.
    The Lord watches over the sojourners;
he upholds the widow and the fatherless,
but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.

10    The Lord will reign forever,
your God, O Zion, to all generations.                        
Praise the Lord!

  • John 8:34-36

34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. 35 The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

Songs for Easter Sunday 2021

I am immensely excited for Sunday, and I usually am. But this Sunday is different.

It is not different because it is a holiday. It is different because it is a genuine holy day. It is set apart because it is a day that changed everything. It is a day that took the great sadness and loss of Good Friday, the crucifixion, and death and gave eternal context through Jesus’ resurrection.

I love the way that the prophet Isaiah foretold it centuries before that first Easter morning:

He will swallow up death forever;
and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from all faces,
and the reproach of His people He will take away
from all the earth,
for the LORD has spoken.
It will be said on that day,
“Behold, this is our God;
we have waited for Him, that He might save us.
This is the LORD; we have waited for Him;
let us be glad and rejoice in His salvation.”

Isaiah 25:8-9

Everything that He promised, He has done, “for He who promised is faithful” (Hebrews 10:23).

From the beginning, it was foretold that Jesus would trample Satan victoriously (Genesis 3:15), and, bearing our sin on the cross, He “disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them” (Colossians 2:15).

He promised eternal life to those who believe in Him (John 3:16), and, in His resurrection, He cancelled the death we deserve with the gift of Life He promised (Romans 6:23), showing us forevermore that

“Death is swallowed up in victory.”
“O death, where is your victory?
O death where is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 15:54-57

The symmetry of what He promised and how He brought it all to pass in His great love, grace, and mercy is a thing of beauty that is greater than anything we could have hoped for. It is greater than anything we could accomplish. It is greater than our sin. It is greater than the power of Satan. And it is all wrapped up in who He is.

I think back to Jesus’ words to Lazarus’ sister Martha when she was grieving Lazarus’ death. Her heart was hurting – as was Jesus’, even to the point of weeping Himself. She stood in the presence of God in flesh and heard words that give hope in the midst of death and grief even two millennia later:

Jesus said to her, “I AM the Resurrection and the Life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

John 11:25-26

You see, it is as I said earlier. Easter is not just a holiday. Easter is a person. Resurrection Sunday is not just our weekly gatherings as Christ’s Church – His bride. He is the Resurrection. Eternal life is not something we earn or accomplish or just receive because of a prayer prayed — He is Life.

So, this Easter Sunday, we will seek to not make it about the gathering. We will seek to have more than a special gathering. We will seek and celebrate Him. We will gather in the midst of His Spirit. We will gather in His presence “for He has risen, as He said” (Matthew 28:6)! He is alive!

Do you believe this?

Here are our songs:

  • Because He Lives
  • Luke 24:1-9

But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away the tomb, but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how He told you, while He was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified on the third day rise.” And they remembered His words, and returning from the tomb they told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest.

  • Death Was Arrested
  • 1 Corinthians 1:3-5

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.

  • Thank You Jesus for the Blood
  • Forever (We Sing Hallelujah)
  • 1 Corinthians 15:26-27, 54-57

The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him.

When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:

“Death is swallowed up in victory.”
“O death, where is your victory?
O death, where is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

  • Resurrecting
  • Ain’t No Grave
  • (invitation) Come Jesus Come

We invite you to join us for Easter this Sunday at Christ Community Church in Grenada, MS!

We have two services Sunday morning!

  • 8:00a for those who prefer greater social distancing and masks worn by all
  • 11:00a for everyone else

Songs for Sunday, February 28, 2021

A few weeks ago in our pastors’ meeting, Jamie laid out a solid challenge that he gleaned from reading about the life and persecution of Richard Wurmbrand: are we focusing on/emphasizing Scripture to the point that, when persecution sets in, we have substantial amounts of Bible in our hearts and minds to help us to proclaim Christ when freedoms and physical Bibles and all the comforts of church as we know it are gone?

I know, that seems bleak, but – for a people who proclaim to believe that God’s Word is what it says it is and that it has a place of importance in our lives – reading, studying, praying, preaching, and praising through the Bible does not seem to be so high a priority.

Ask yourself: what priority does the Word of God hold in your life?

iPhone users are familiar with screen time reporting where your phone can tell how many hours (yes, hours and hours) a day we spend on our phones and to which apps and uses the hours are spent. What would the page time report of our lives look like? How many hours in the word do we spend? Or would we have nothing or little to report?

Now, I do not say this to shame you or hurt your feelings. I say this to encourage you! Get in the Word! Get the Word in and through you! He is worth it!

Last week, Pastor John told us that we were about to embark on a series of sermons designed to help us focus on memorizing the Word and getting it inside of our hearts and minds (Psalm 119:11). So, for the next few weeks in our “Songs for Sunday” posts, we will look at some verses that drive us in our weekly worship times at Christ Community.

Reading the Word Together as Worship

Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching.

1 Timothy 4:13

It is not hard to see where this verse fits into our weekly worship. John reminds us often that essential church is praying, praising, and preaching, and we start all of our worship off with prayer every week. But, before we sing a note, we read the Word out loud together.

It is clear that this is important because Paul told Timothy, a young man pastoring in the church at Ephesus, to “devote” himself to that before “exhortation” (encouraging/warning through the Word) or “teaching” (as Nehemiah 8:8 puts it, “read from the book, from the Law of God, clearly, and … [give] the sense, so that the people [understand] the reading”).

When God finally pricked my heart with this verse, I had to repent of our not doing this. There had been many years where this was not done at all, much less something that I led people in or could remote claim to be devoted to. But, now, it is my favorite part of worship. To hear people read the Word together in unison – to cheer and clap at the Word of God before we ever sing a note – makes my heart happy. It makes my heart happy because we are united around the Word of God and united in our focus on God as the object of our worship. That’s good news!

And that’s what we are reading and singing about this week: being in awe of the God of the Bible and what we see that He has done for us in His Word through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus alone by the power of His Holy Spirit. Amen.

Here are our songs:

  • Psalm 19:1-11

1 The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims His handiwork.
2 Day to day pours out speech,
and night to night reveals knowledge.
3 There is no speech, nor are there words,
whose voice is not heard.
4 Their voice goes out through all the earth,
and their words to the ends of the world.
In them He has set a tent for the sun,
5 which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber,
and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy.
6 Its rising is from the end of the heavens,
and its circuit to the end of them,
and there is nothing hidden from its heat.

7 The law of the LORD is perfect,
reviving the soul;
the testimony of the LORD is sure,
making wise the simple;
8 the precepts of the LORD are right,
rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the LORD is pure,
enlightening the eyes;
9 the fear of the LORD is clean,
enduring forever;
the rules of the LORD are true,
and righteous altogether.
10 More to be desired are they than gold,
even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey
and drippings of the honeycomb.
11 Moreover, by them is your servant warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.

  • Psalm 19:12-14

12 Who can discern His errors?
Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
13 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;
let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless,
and innocent of great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable in Your sight,
O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.

I hope to see you with us, whether you gather in person, in the parking lot via speaker, or on Facebook or YouTube live!

If gathering in person, please remember that masks are recommended and that we need to remain vigilant in our social distancing measures. Continue to pray for those who are sick – not just our members but all those around the world.

New Opportunity:

Starting Sunday, March 7, we will be offering an 8:00a service for those who are at risk for Covid-19 and desire more social distancing and masking. The worship center will be sanitized prior to this service as well as all high-traffic surfaces.

This is not merely an overflow or alternate service but an opportunity for those of our faith family who have not been able to gather to have the opportunity to gather (socially distanced) as we believe it is absolutely essential to gather together (Hebrews 10:24).

Please be in prayer for God’s protection on those willing to begin to gather again in and for this effort in general.

Songs for Sunday, February 7, 2021

This week, 2 Corinthians 5:7 has been on my mind:

…for we walk by faith, not by sight.

There are so many distractions around us. Everywhere we look there seems to be more trouble and more distraction than ever before. It gets harder and harder to keep our focus when our eyes are constantly wandering from issue to problem to…well, whatever.

I am reminded of times when my children have been upset or in trouble – when they have been inconsolable. When they are torn with grief and cannot stop sobbing, when their breathing catches in their chest and they are afraid, when their whole little world seems to their limited experience to be falling apart, I tell them to look into my eyes and trust me. I remind them that as their daddy I will do everything in my power to help – to make it as right as I can.

For my kids, there is only so much comfort that looking into my eyes can bring. I cannot fix everything. I know it. They know it. And that is a good thing. They do not need to look to me to fix everything. I make a poor savior and a worse god.

But we have a heavenly Father we can look to. One day, our faith – “assurance of things hoped for, conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1) – will be made sight. We will no longer believe out of faith because we will see Him face to face! Oh, how we should long for that Day!

But until then, let us “fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2 NIV84). Let us “set [our] minds on things that are above”, on “Christ who is your life” (Colossians 3:2, 4). Let us seek the Lord for “the eyes of [our] hearts to be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which He has called you, what are the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of His power toward us who believe” (Ephesians 1:18-19). Let us look to and have faith in King Jesus.

That’s what we are singing about this week, our great God and Savior Jesus Christ who reveals Himself to us through His Word and His Spirit and has made a Way for us to be with Him for all eternity – who loves us and cares for us enough to die and LIVE for us!

Here are our songs:

  • Ephesians 1:15-23

15 For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, 16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, 17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might 20 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 22 And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

  • Psalm 77:11-15

11 I will remember the deeds of the Lord;
    yes, I will remember your wonders of old.
12 I will ponder all your work,
    and meditate on your mighty deeds.
13 Your way, O God, is holy.
    What god is great like our God?
14 You are the God who works wonders;
    you have made known your might among the peoples.
15 You with your arm redeemed your people,
    the children of Jacob and Joseph. Selah

I hope to see you with us, whether you gather in person, in the parking lot via speaker, or on Facebook or YouTube live!

If gathering in person, please remember that masks are recommended and that we need to remain vigilant in our social distancing measures. Continue to pray for those who are sick – not just our members but all those around the world.

Songs for Sunday — October 11, 2020

Last week, Big John said something that has stuck in my head all week. He talked about how earthly parents are limited in how much they can do for their children.

They want to take away pain, but there is only so much they can do to relieve their children’s suffering. They want to save them from trouble, but – again – they have limits. But our God is not limited!

Romans 8:31-39 tells us about the everlasting love of our heavenly Father:

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him graciously give us all things?

Romans 8:31-32

What powerful and humbling questions!

He goes on to tell us more about that love:

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?

Romans 8:35

Any of those things would be enough to thwart me as an earthly Father. Again, I – as all earthly fathers are – am limited. But our Father is not! Look at the answer to all of these questions:

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:37-39

That’s good news! And that never ending, never stopping, never failing, never giving-up love of our God and Savior is what we are singing about this Sunday!

These verses were on my heart as the worship set came together this week:

Here are our songs:

I hope to see you with us, whether you gather in person, in the parking lot via speaker, or on Facebook or YouTube live!

If gathering in person, please remember that masks are recommended and that we need to remain vigilant in our social distancing measures. Continue to pray for those who are sick – not just our members but all those around the world.

Songs for Sunday – 9/27/2020

This Sunday at Christ Community we get to celebrate new life! We celebrate the Life – our resurrected King Jesus! It is a blessing to get to be a part of what He is doing!

Speaking of what God is doing, we will get to celebrate believers’ baptism Sunday afternoon! I have always found that baptism Sundays are the most exciting ones in every church I have served, but there is only one party that outdoes Christ Community’s baptism services – when the angels rejoice over saved sinners (Luke 15:10)!

It is no less miraculous to see someone born again than seeing someone born the first time! You see, a lost sinner – dead in their trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1) – repenting of their sin and putting their trust in Christ – being raised to life in Christ (Ephesians 2:4-5) is a miracle. I mean, how often do we see the dead raised?

Baptism – as Paul describes it in Romans 6 – is a beautiful picture of this miracle:

We were buried therefore with Him in baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.

Romans 6:4

When a new believer is submersed under the water, it symbolizes the death of the old self, the flesh. It represents the death we deserve that was earned by our sin (Romans 6:23). But, typically, the grave is a one way trip. Gravediggers only dig entrances.

Jesus makes a Way for us. He died for our sins and rose from the dead. He invites us to have faith – believe and trust – in Him. And, if we do that, the Bible teaches that we share in His Life, His resurrection:

For if we have been united with Him in a death like His, we shall certainly be united with Him in a resurrection like His.

Romans 6:5

That’s good news that’s worth celebrating! And that’s what we’re singing about this Sunday morning! It’s my prayer that, if you do not know Him, that you see the surpassing worth that is in Jesus (Philippians 3:8)and trust in Him!

These verses were on my heart as the worship set came together this week:

Here are our songs:

I hope to see you with us, whether you gather in person, in the parking lot via speaker, or on Facebook or YouTube live!

If gathering in person, please remember that masks are recommended and that we need to remain vigilant in our social distancing measures. Continue to pray for those who are sick – not just our members but all those around the world.