Monday, June 14, 2010

Humility and Limitations

Several guys from our pastoral team attended the conference, Together for the Gospel, back in April. They brought back the conference booklet, which contained the songs (er, rather, hymns) sung at that gathering of some 7,000.

A couple of things really struck me in this collection:
  • of the 18 songs (er, rather, hymns) sung, only one (1) was completely new to me. We have since introduced it to our evening service, and I commend it: "All I have is Christ" by Jordan Kauflin
  • of the 17 songs which were not completely new to me, only 4 have not been sung in morning services here at College Church (and, interestingly, 3 of those are among the oldest hymns in the lot)
  • Only 5 of the 18 have "new" words or tunes.
  • I could go on with other interesting tidbits about the selections, but the most interesting feature, to me, is
  • All the songs are presented in 4-part harmony!
T4G music leader Bob Kauflin (whose fine "O great God" is included) wrote about this decision in his always readable blog. The author of a book I have been recommending, Worship Matters, Kauflin discussed the request to present music this way, was frank about how this put him out of his comfort zone, and demonstrated what it looks like to serve others with joy.

Just to give a little taste of this post: Whatever limitations you face when you lead, see them as opportunities for God to do something better than what you would have done on your own. If nothing else, limitations imposed on us by others are occasions to trust God more intently and “look not only to our own interests, but also the interests of others” (Phil. 2:4)

Take a look at the hymns used at the conference, and learn at least one new one, for the good of your spirit this week!

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