Friday, 30 December 2011

The Gathering

One of the things we are always thinking about as we prep the music for Sunday services, is how we can lead people to better appreciate the Gospel of Christ. The service is often a bit of a journey... we open with songs that tell the greatness of God and our thanks to Him just simply for who he is... we then move on to our own need for salvation, our desperate need for forgiveness and when we're down in that valley, we are ready to appreciate the beauty of the Gospel... in come the songs of salvation! How good is God that he should provide his only Son, Jesus Christ, to die for us, redeem us, save us, atone for us, give us new life and fill us with the Spirit! Once people are valuing the cross, they're ready to tell the world, and so we tend to finish with songs that send us out to share the Gospel with those around us.

Sovereign Grace produce loads of fantastic music that we use in Church. The lyrics are strong, the music is excellent and we (at CEC) love them! This past month, they have brought out their newest CD "The Gathering"... its purpose is to take us on the journey I've described above, and I'm so excited to buy it and get listening.

Here's what they say about it...
The songs on The Gathering can be sung apart from each other, but together they form a progression that reflects the gospel and our response to it. A call to worship (There is One Reason) leads to proclaiming God’s greatness (Greater Than We Can Imagine, Come Praise and Glorify). In view of God’s glory, we more clearly see our sinfulness and need for mercy before his holiness (Shine Into Our Night, Have Mercy on Me). We then rejoice in the good news that God has forgiven us and reconciled us to himself through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ (Now Why This Fear and Unbelief, Isaiah 53). A fresh awareness of God’s mercy in Christ makes us grateful for his generosity and kindness in every way (Generous King), which leads to eagerly asking for more of his grace (When You Move). A desire to know God’s will through his Word (Your Words of Life, Show us Christ) is followed by expressions of commitment and communion (All I Have is Christ, We Hunger and Thirst). Having rehearsed and celebrated the gospel and its effect in our lives, we want to take this good news to the world (Lift High the Cross). A final song reminds us that we leave relying not on our own strength, but on the love of God, the grace of Christ, and the power of the Spirit (As You Go).

I'll review it shortly, once I've had a good listen through, but for now, I thought I'd leave you with one of my favourite Sovereign Grace songs of all time...

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