Windsor Park United Church

Notes on the Notes – March 17, 2019

Second Sunday of Lent

Baptism

Today, Tomorrow and the Next Day

This week’s scripture readings:

Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18           Psalm 27          Luke 13:31-35

This week’s music:

“Be Still and Know”

“Be still and know that I am God.
Be still and know that I am God.
Be still and know that I am God.”

As we move into the second Sunday of Lent, we will continue using this short meditative centering response. The words are from Psalm 46:10, 7:1 and Exodus 15:26. The arrangement is by Jack Schrader (1988).

“Come to My Heart” (VU #661)

“Come to my heart, Lord Jesus; teach me to walk in your way.
Come to my heart, Lord Jesus; come to my heart today.
Give me the peace and joy that only you can bring.
Come to my heart, Lord Jesus; give me a song to sing.

heart-in-hand

Fill me with love, Lord Jesus;
Teach me to walk in your way.

Fill me with love, Lord Jesus;
Fill me with love today.

Give me the peace and joy
That only you can bring.

Fill me with love, Lord Jesus;
Give me a song to sing.

Answer my prayer, Lord Jesus; teach me to walk in your way.
Answer my prayer, Lord Jesus; answer my prayer today.
Give me the peace and joy that only you can bring.
Answer my prayer, Lord Jesus; give me a song to sing.”

Our opening song was written by Joe Pinson in 1979.  It’s simple lyrics are an invitation for Jesus to be with us during this time of worship.

“Only a Shadow”

“The love we have for you, O Lord, is only a shadow of your love for us;
Only a shadow of your love for us, your deep abiding love.

Our own belief in you, O Lord, is only a shadow of your faith in us;
Only a shadow of your faith in us; your deep and lasting faith.

The dreams we have today, O Lord, are only a shadow of your dreams for us;
Only a shadow of your dreams for us; if we but follow you.

The joy we share today, O Lord, is only a shadow of your joys for us;
Only a shadow of your joys for us; when we meet face to face.

Our lives are in your hands,
Our lives are in your hands.
Our love for you will grow, O Lord;
Your light in us will shine.”

We are reminded of God’s steadfast love and faithfulness though the words of this song by Carey Landry (1971).

“A New Creed”

“We are not alone,
We live in God’s world,
We believe in God,
Who has created and is creating,
Who has come in Jesus, the Word made flesh,crest
To reconcile and make new,
Who works in us and others by the Spirit.
We trust in God.

We are called to be the Church,
To celebrate God’s presence,
To live with respect in Creation,
To love and serve others,
To seek justice and resist evil,
To proclaim Jesus, crucified and risen,
Our judge and our hope.

In life, in death, in life beyond death,
God is with us.
We are not alone.
Thanks be to God.”

This statement of faith of the United Church of Canada was set to music by Richard Hall.   Through it, we define our covenant relationship with God, what we believe, and our response to that belief.  To learn more about the history of the writing of the New Creed, go to:  http://www.windsorparkunitedchurch.com/a-new-creed/

“Lord, Prepare Me to be a Sanctuary” (MV #18)

Lord, prepare me to be a sanctuary
Pure and holy, tried and true
With thanksgiving, I’ll be a living
Sanctuary for you.”

This simple song was written by John W. Thompson and Randy Scruggs in 1982.    The lyrics of “Sanctuary” are a request for God to purify oneself.   We come before God as flawed individuals, trusting in God’s love and grace.  Safe in this love, we thankfully become a living vessel for God.

To listen to the song go to:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4LiTy7nd

“We are Singing for the Lord is Our Light”

“We are singing, for the Lord is our light,
We are singing, for the Lord is our light.
We are singing, for the Lord is our light,
We are singing, for the Lord is our light.
We are singing, singing, we are singing, singing,
We are singing for the Lord is, for the Lord is our light.
We are singing, singing, we are singing, singing,
We are singing for the Lord is our light.

psalm 27The Lord is the strength of our lives;
Of whom shall we be afraid?
Though foes may be near to destroy;
The Lord will be our light.

One thing have we asked of the Lord,
Yes, this is the thing we seek;
To dwell in the house of the Lord;
To live with God forever.

When burdens are heavy to bear,
Our shelter is God alone.
Our feet are lifted high;
Yes, high upon a rock.

We walk in the strength of the Lord,
God’s love is ever sure.
We shout that the world may hear,
We sing a joyful song.”

This chorus of this song is based on the South African Freedom song, “Siyahamba.” The 4 verses are based on Psalm 27:1-4.  The Psalmist speaks of the relationship between the people and God, rejoicing in God’s faithfulness and love throughout times of burden and hardship.

“He’s Always Been Faithful to Me”

“Morning by morning, I wake up to find the power and comfort
Of God’s hand in mine.

Season by season I watch Him, amazed,
In awe of the myst’ry of His perfect ways.

All I have need of His hand will provide.
He’s always been faithful to me.

I can’t remember a trial or a pain He did not recycle to bring me gain.
I can’t remember one single regret in serving God only
And trusting His hand.

All I have need of His hand will provide.
He’s always been faithful to me.

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee.
Thou changest not; Thy compassions, they fail not,
As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

Great is Thy faithfulness!Great is thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided.
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me!

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide.
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Wondrous the portion Thy blessings provide.

Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided.
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me!

This is my anthem,
This is my song;
The theme of the stories I’ve heard for so long.
God has been faithful, He will be again.
His loving compassion, it know no end.
All I have need of His hand will provide.
He’s always been faithful to me.”

This song has words and music by Sara Groves. It is based on the hymn “Great is Thy Faithfulness” by Thomas O. Chisholm and William M. Runyan. The arrangement is by Gary Rhodes.

Hear the song sung by Sara Groves at:  https://youtu.be/cTLfQ05Otk0

Hear the song sung by The Zoe Group (acapella) at:  https://youtu.be/1DOvGHB9qbc

To read more about the song, go to:  https://www.newreleasetoday.com/article.php?article_id=2220

“Sometimes by Step”

“Sometimes the night was beautiful.
Sometimes the sky was so far away.
Sometimes it seemed to stoop so close you could touch it,
But your heart would break.

Sometimes the morning came too soon,
Sometimes the day could be so hot.
There was so much work left to do,
But so much You’d already done.

Oh God, You are my God,
And I will ever praise You.
Oh God, You are my God,
And I will ever praise You.
And I will seek You in the morning,
And I will learn to walk in Your ways.
And step by step You’ll lead me,
And I will follow You all of my days.

Sometimes I think of Abraham,
How one star he saw had been lit for me.
He was a stranger in this land,
And I am that no less than he.
And on this road to righteousness, sometimes the climb can be so steep.
I may falter in my steps,
But never beyond Your reach.

Oh God, You are my God,
And I will ever praise You.
Oh God, You are my God,
And I will ever praise You.
And I will seek You in the morning,
And I will learn to walk in Your ways.
And step by step You’ll lead me,
And I will follow You all of my days.

man-walking-under-starry-sky-footage-049842902_iconl.jpeg

Our closing song today was written by Rich Mullen and Beaker and has become one of their most loved songs over the years.  The words offer the assurance that God has not abandoned us and will always be present to lift us up again. “I may falter in my steps, but never beyond Your reach.”

The reference to Abraham in the second verse ties us directly to the Genesis story as we imagine each of us as one of the stars lit in the night sky when God told Abraham that he would have as many descendants as the stars in the sky.   It also serves to remind us that the night sky we see is the same as the sky our Biblical ancestors saw.

This song symbolizes our wanderings “on this road to righteousness,” where we must seek Him in the morning, and learn to walk in His ways, daily, and follow Him step by step, in faith and obedience.

The chorus (or the “Step by Step” part of the song) was written by Beaker.   While the verses are more personal, the chorus is a reaffirmation of our commitment to walk in God’s ways and continue on our faith journey, knowing that God will be with us through all of our challenges and joys.

Hear Rich Mullin sing the song:

To ponder:  

How would you describe the covenant between you and God?

 

Posted in Notes on the Notes on March 16, 2019.