Monday, March 31, 2008

Family Television

I’m happy to report that I have now seen an episode of “Hannah Montana.” My granddaughter loves the Disney channel. After a week in Oklahoma I’ve actually seen many new things on TV.

We watched some show with Alton the cook on the food channel where he was in Minnesota eating nasty things like rotten fish head jelly. My son loves to watch the food network.

My daughter-in-law likes to watch “Good Morning America”, but she likes to see it around 10:00, so it’s on the TiVO schedule. Now and then they watched Fox News with me. But most of the time we watched Gibson bowl and play tennis on Wii.

It was nice, in this day of every room having its own TV, for us to be together as a family. Would I have watched Hannah or Alton or Diane if I had been home by myself? Nope. I guess I could have gone to a different room and watched what I wanted to watch all day long, but then I wouldn’t have been with my son and grandchildren and we wouldn’t have those shared – even if it was TV – experiences together.

Guess where I’m going with this: Sunday morning worship. Our congregation is blessed to have people of all ages worshipping together. How nice it is that when we gather together on a Sunday morning that we sing a great variety of music that speaks to all generations. How nice it is that grandparents, parents and children are singing God’s praises together. They may not sit together (It’s definitely not cool to sit with mom when you are 16.) but they have that same shared experience that helps make a family. It would be quite sad for grandma to go to one service, mom and dad to another, teenage brother go to another and kid sister to a fourth service. In that situation, where is the common bond, the shared experience, the give and take of loving someone and giving up some of your own wants to meet the needs of another?

Oooo, he’s gone to preachin’. Land the plane! (If you missed yesterday’s sermon I’ll explain that one to you.)

Bottom line. I hope that when I am 70 and my grandchildren are 25, 24, 22, 21, 21 and 19 that we will go to church together. I hope that they will sing “old” songs that I like, like “How Great Is Our God” and that I will want to sing whatever “new” songs are written in 2028 and that we will worship together because we are “family!” I also hope that we’ll still be singing “Holy, Holy, Holy” which was written in 1861. It’s part of our Christian heritage and it connects us with all of the saints who have gone before us (but that is a whole other post).

Who knows, by then we may have rediscovered the grandeur of a pipe organ and how well it expresses the greatness of God and they’ll be replacing guitars and drums…

Friday, March 28, 2008

A Great Testimony

I hate to admit this, but I've never seen the show "Hannah Montana." I know, I'm terribly behind the times. Although I do know about the show and it's star, Miley Cyrus. I guess now that my granddaughter is getting older I'm going to have to actually watch the show. You know, so I'll continue to be a young, hip, with-it, cool kind of Papa. (Hmmm, I guess if you are really young and hip you don't use the phrase "young and hip.")

All of that to lead into this neat article from Fox News about Ms. Cyrus.

LOS ANGELES — At just 15, Miley Cyrus is a multi-millionaire mogul not just for her music but for her film, fashion and entrepreneurial endeavors; however, the pop princess has managed to stay sane (and sensible) amid her very adult-like life and credits Christianity for her good behavior.
"I think it’s my faith that keeps me grounded, especially because I’m a Christ follower for sure," Cyrus told us. "Live like Christ and he’ll live in you, and that’s what I want to do."

Wow! This should be a great encouragement to each of us to 1. live the kind of life that others want to know why we are different from the world and 2. be ready to share our faith - about being a follower of Christ.

If someone followed you around all day would they see you as a follower of Christ?
How does this relate to worship? (Not that that is the only thing I ever blog about.) According to Romans 12 everything in our life should be worship.

Romans 12:1 NAS
"Therefore I urge you, brethren , by the mercies of God , to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice , acceptable to God , which is your spiritual service of worship ."

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Sunday's Music 3-30

Blessed Be Your Name

I'm working on my English accent so we can do it like Matt Redman does.

Great Is Thy Faithfulness
My Hope

We're still in OKC. Having a great time. The grandbabies move and talk non-stop, but that helps us sleep better at night. The wind is still blowing only now it is bringing in colder air. The high today was 85 - tomorrow is expected to be around 60. I suppose if the wind is always going to blow it might as well do something.

We went to one of those photo shoot places today. You know the kind. They take a hundred pictures and then say, "Thank you. That will be two house payments and all of next month's groceries please." Fortunately we got away for a little less than that.

Worth every penny!

You can see more of our adventures here

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

A Great Day at Hilldale

Easter morning at Hilldale was a great day. What made it so great? It's kind of hard for an Easter Sunday to not be great. How can a person not celebrate? The music Sunday was great - if I say so myself: the choir sang wonderfully, the congregation sang wonderfully (all 1700+) and the ensemble/praise team was fabulous.

The sermon was great too.

Bro. Larry preached an excellent sermon at Hilldale on why the empty tomb is so important. You should go listen to it if you missed it. click on that link and then click on the sermon titled "Becoming a Christian."

John 11:25 NAS
Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life ; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies"

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

This Week's Worship Ministry Schedule

No rehearsal Wednesday night. You deserve a break and I'll still be in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma State Bird and State Flower

I heard once that the Eskimos have a hundred words for "snow." It seems like Oklahoma should have that many for "wind." The high today was 78! The forecast for tomorrow is about the same and it will be "breezy to windy." Funny.

Sunday will be our regular schedule in the morning:

Morning worship rehearsal - 8:00

First morning worship service - 9:00

Second morning worship service - 10:30

Sunday Evening:
\It's a fifth Sunday, so we're having a special concert. This month is The Isaacs! - 5:00

Monday, March 24, 2008


Continued from a post earlier today (that started out as a post about Easter Sunday).

So anyway, I couldn't post anything at the hotel last night because we had to actually use a cord to connect to the internet (I know, so archaic) and Cheryl had some work she had to do, so I played solitare on my computer. I guess you didn't know your Worship Pastor led such a wild life. lol

Oklahoma's beautiful state flag.

Our drive to Oklahoma went well. There's a line in the Oklahoma state song - which is probably the best state song ever (our thanks to Rogers and Hammerstein) that says, "and the waving wheat can sure smell sweet when the wind comes right behind the rain." Well, they didn't just make up that wind part. My goodness! The wind is blowing sooo hard and has been all day. The car wanted to blow right over. We saw a street cleaner on the interstate here in OKC. He didn't vacuum up any dirt, he just kicked it up in the air and now Kansas has to worry about it.

I'm not sure why it is so windy here. Perhaps it's because they have wind farms, like in this picture, and grow it here.

They do gas here too. So it is less than $3 a gallon at some places. Whew, I bet this is all terribly boring to read. It's almost midnight, so I guess I'll quit.

I hope you all have a great week. I'll post my Easter thoughts tomorrow. It was such a wonderful day, I have to say something about it. We won't have choir rehearsal this week.

Easter Celebration

Easter Sunday morning was wonderful! I wanted to write seomthing about it last night, but when the second service was over we jumped in Grani's car and headed to Oklahoma to see the Okie grandbabies. Actually, two of the three were born in Tennessee (and all three with their mom and dad need to move back to Tennesee!)

So I was going to post something last night when we got to the hotel. But silly me, assuming all Holiday Inn Expresses have wireless internet in the room didn't ask before handing over my credit card. My lovely wife,Cheryl, aka Grani (she says she spells it that way because she's the new young kind of grani)

OK, I"m trying to type this on my 5 year old grandson's computer (he's playing a game on mine) and there is no 'b' key ( I just have to hit the space where the key used to be), no period key and the space bar only works most of the time and now the grandchildren are needing me, so I will finish this later.

Friday, March 21, 2008

O Sacred Head

Besides being Good Friday, today is J.S. Bach's birthday. He is one of the greatest composers and church musicians of all time. For over 250 years this lovely chorale has helped followers of Jesus focus on and meditate on His suffering. I pray you have had a blessed Good Friday and have spent a little time today reflecting on God's incredible love and Christ's sacrifice.

Isaiah 53:
He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

A Good Friday!

Sleeping in a little

Spending the day with my lovely wife (not that I don't love my job)

Beautiful weather - supposed to hit 71 today

Hannah and Benjamin coming over later this afternoon to spend the night with Grani and Papa

More daylight today than yesterday

The daffodils are blooming in Bear Hollow (Spring arrives a little later here 'cause the holler stays a little cooler and gets a little less sun - it is a holler after all)

Remembering Romans 5:8 NIV
"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

Have a great Good Friday!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Maundy Thursday

"Maundy" is Old English taken from French taken from Latin"Mandatum novum". In Latin it is the first word in the phrase " A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another." John 13:34

I suppose I could preach a great sermon about love here, but let me encourage you to do your own sermon. Go to or or another Bible study site and do a search for "love". Narrow your search down to John or John's epistles or you'll have too long of a list. Then read those verses that show up in the search and then the Holy Spirit will tell you what you need to hear.

Maundy Thursday is a time to remember Christ's servant love as he washed the disciples' feet, the Last Supper, Judas' betrayal and the arrest and trials. Tune in tomorrow to read about Good Friday.

You can find all kinds of information about Maundy Thursday on Wikipedia if you would like

Spring Equinox and Easter

Happy Spring Equinox!

This is the day (in the Spring) when there is same amount of daylight as darkness. It's official name is "Vernal Equinox" in the Northen Hemisphere (Vernal =spring, equinox=equal nights). According to "On March 20, 2008, at precisely 1:48 A.M. EDT (March 20, 05:48 Universal Time), the Sun will cross directly over the Earth's equator. " Pretty exciting stuff!

Tomorrow will be a full moon. People that keep track of exact moments of such things say the moon will be full at 18:41 GMT (Greenwich Mean Time).

What makes all of this significant for worship is that Easter is always the Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox -which means... (in case it had slipped past you - lol) that THIS Sunday is Easter Sunday! I'll be looking for you in worship at 9:00 or 10:30.

Sunday's choir anthem - "Celebrate the Victory"

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Holy Week

Sometimes I think we miss out on some nice spiritual things as Baptists. It's not in our tradition to observe "Holy Week", but it can be a very good time of spiritual growth and/or renewal. ("Now, he tells me. The week is half over.)

The point (at least one point) of Holy Week is to prepare yourself - prepare your heart - for a wonderful celebration on Resurrection Sunday (Easter). Many Christians give up something for the week (like dessert or TV or something they really enjoy) to remind themselves of all that Christ gave up on our behalf.

Probably more important than giving something up is focusing on our Lord Jesus, turning from sins that have crept back into our lives, reading scripture and praying and basically getting back to living like we should as followers, as the redeemed, as a royal priesthood 1 Peter 2:9 NAS .

"Wow! That's asking a lot", you might say. That's why you have a whole week to work on it!

Now you're late getting started since I didn't get around to telling you about it until Wednesday, so get busy!

I like to read the last few chapters of each gospel - starting with the Triumpahl Entry (Palm Sunday) reading about the last supper John 13 (this is good for Thursday - check in tomorrow for info on Maundy Thursday), Christ's death (Good Friday), and of course the resurrection (Sunday). I'll post more on each of these. I know you can hardly wait!

Another great passage of scripture for this week is Isaiah 53:1-12

A Song for Easter Sunday Morning

I have an ensemble singing this arrangement of this song this Sunday morning. I don't know how you'll be able to just sit there and listen, so just stand up wherever you are and start singing it with us! He's alive! Hallelujah! Oh, and if you want to learn of few of these dance moves... go for it!

Brenda's Replacement

We really liked Brenda in the past. She was kind and sweet and never bucked Jesus or kicked a disciple who may have been standing too close to her back side. But we've found a wonderful replacement who seems to be just as kind and gentle.

In case you didn't get to meet him, here's Jackson.

I don't have any pictures of him in the program. If you have one, send it to me, please, and I'll post it here.
Here he is looking a little shy.
I had to have my picture made with one of the stars of the show!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Comments from Friday's Performance

We had many nice comments about BtK HPP2008.

According to papers filled out Friday there were:
47 -- churches in attendance
11 -- wanting more information on Hilldale
29 -- reaffirming Christ's Lordship
5 -- first time turning away from sin to follow Jesus

Here are comments from Friday night:

My family really enjoyed your awesome play, as well as your basketball program.

I have enjoyed this play very much and this is friendliest church. Everyone is so
nice and friendly. God Bless each one of you.

Very Very Wonderful. Than you and may God Bless You All.

Really great job choir and all involved.

I am a cast member of Bow the Knee from Hillcrest in Hopkinsville. Absolutely Great Job
Enjoyed it very much.

Great Job – Thank you

Moved in my heart for Repentance

Excellent production, Praise God for your ministry in this community

God Bless you Hilldale for another year of how God has blessed you

I really enjoyed tonight’s performance. I am so very overwhelmed. Thank you

Thank you for the blessing of this production.

Great Message

The program was excellent. I truly enjoyed it so much

I truly enjoyed this awesome play

Tonight was awesome, thank You

A wonderful presentation, God bless all of your efforts

What a blessing, Thank you so very much for sharing Jesus in such a mighty way.

Thank you for a wonderful service

I want to be closer again to Christ

I prayed my Lord cleanse my heart of all the junk in my life. I rededicated my life to Christ.

Excellent Presentation

We enjoyed the play so much, great job everyone

Wonderful Worship Service
What a privilege to join in a blessed worship experience.

Very good production

You are a Blessing to so many, especially HIM

Fantastic Production, God is so Good

Great Job, Thank You

Enjoyed the play so much


Be encouraged in your walk with the Lord


The Passion Play sure touched our hearts, Thank You, Glory to God

The Play was amazing

Awesome Play

I now believe in Jesus

Great presentation, Good Job Guys


Thank you for this and the many other programs that you put on for everyone to attend.

You have a good looking church that seems to be very friendly as we were greeted several times by your members. May God Bless You

An excellent production and portrayal of the Glory of God. I pray this production brings
many more people to Christ.

Great Program

Absolutely Wonderful, Thank you so much

Great Job

I always receive such a blessing from your music. God has truly blessed your church with
lots of talent. May God continue to bless you daily.

10,000th Hit Winner

You may remember that a week or so ago we were getting close to our 10,000th hit on our worship blog. To celebrate or commemorate the event we offered a prize to our 10,000th visitor.

On the original post there was a picture of 10,000 drum sounds. (What could be more appropriate for a "hit" on a music blog than drums? is the original post if you want to see it.

Here's a picture of the prize. (Notice how well it fits our 10,000th hit theme.)
And I'm so pleased that our 10,000th hit was made by one of our faithful readers and worship blog fans. Here she is, Ms. Irene, receiving her prize just before Saturday's performance of Bow the Knee Hilldale's Passion Play 2008.

Monday, March 17, 2008

The Colours of the Irish

Are you wearing green today? They say everyone is Irish on March 17th. But here's an interesting fact that non-Irish non-Catholics probably missed. St. Patrick's Day was celebrated on March 15th this year. 'tis true, lads and lassies. Any time St. Patrick's Day falls during Holy Week. (Look for future posts on Holy Week.) then it is moved ahead so it won't be celebrated during that week. This won't happen again until 2160, so you really don't have to remember this.

St. Patrick is the patron Saint of Irland. He used the shamrock to explain the Trinity to the pre-Christian people of Irland. Hmmm, perhaps this was the first example of lifestyle, everyday, as-you-go evangelism. That's what we are learning in F.A.I.T.H. (Here's a post about Saints you might want to see )

Some people don't wear green today. They wear orange. We should actually wear orange today too. (Notice the Irish flag.) "Why is that laddy?" you may ask. 'Cause orange is the colour of the Protestants and green is the colour of the Catholics. (Some will argue that Baptists aren't really protestants that we were around before the reformation. Which actually is true, but everyone else puts us in with protestants for ease and going into all of that will make this post long and boring.)

Wikipedia says that the original colour of Ireland was blue. I don't remember why.

What's the point?

We haven't done laundry here on Bear Hollow for a long time due to Passion Play rehearsals and performances, so I'll be happy to find anything to wear, much less worry about whether it is green or orange! I hope you all have a chance to rest (and do laundry) this week. Bow the Knee Hilldale's Passion Play 2008 was wonderful! Thanks again for all of your hard work and time.

Happy St. Patrick's Day

I was going to post a nice Irish fiddle tune for you and then saw this. It's just for fun.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Great Job!

I didn't get in until after 11:30 last night (went to Chili's with some of the twenty year olds. It was nice they let the old folks join them.) and almost 10:00 tonight (took Hannah and Benjamin out to supper and watched Baby Einstein), so I'm not going to post much tonight. But I did want to quickly say, "GREAT JOB!" Everyone was sooooo wonderful. The actors, the soloists, the choir, all the tech crew (lights, sound, cameras, switchers and mixers), the costumers (Heather and her helpers), the folks doing all of the background things (Janet and Mitchell and Mitchell's boys and Mike)... I hope I didn't leave anyone out. Anyway, it was all wonderful! Thank you!

We have some good pictures of Bow the Knee Hilldale's Passion Play 2008 at the office, but I had these two of us from last night as we were meeting to pray.

Now I'm going to sleep. Ahhhhhhhhhhh!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Surprise! Look Who's in Heaven with Jesus

I mentioned in my last post how I - once again - can't find my camera. but apparently last night someone had a camera with them. Don't look for a re-creation of this shot tonight!

Here We Go!

It's time!

The countdown is over...

The rehearsals are finished...

The costumes are hemmed...

The music is learned...

The actors know their marks and cues...

Bow the Knee Hilldale's Passion Play 2008 is ready to go! Take some time today to pray for the singers, actors, technicians, etc. but also pray for those coming to see this wonderful production.

Call is at 6:00. Performance is at 7:00.
The doors to the public will also open at 6:00, so if you want to come earlier to make sure you have all of your things where you want them that will be great.

If you are coming to watch Bow the Knee Hilldale's Passion Play 2008 you'll want to come early to get a good seat. Good seats are in the middle.


I needed it last night to take a picture of Jackson and Popeye.

Jackson is playing the part of the young colt (donkey). He's not that young, but he doesn't look his age.

Popeye is one of the little goats. He is sooooo adorable. Sam is bottle feeding him three times a day and he thinks he is a puppy. I wanted to take him home with me.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!

Mark 11:7-10 Read This Chapter
And they brought the donkey to Jesus and threw their robes on it, and He sat on it.
Many people spread their robes on the road, and others spread leafy branches cut from the fields.
Then those who went before and those who followed kept shouting: Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David! Hosanna in the highest heaven!
Come sing Hosanna! with us this Sunday, March 16, as we celebrate Palm Sunday. Services are at 9:00 and 10:30.
We'll also sing Hosanna tonight during dress rehearsal. If you can some early to get ready that will help the traffic flow. Dressing rooms have been marked in the hall by the gym.
If you are inviting people to come to see Bow the Knee Hilldale's Passion Play 2008, tell them to come early to get a good seat. We have had calls from several churches bringing groups and the good seats will go quickly.
If you haven't had a chance to listen to this song, check it out! Hosanna!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Listen to this great song by Paul Baloche - 'cause we're singing it Sunday! It's a wonderful song for Palm Sunday.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

To Do Lists

Do you ever make yourself a "to do" list? I only make them when I have to. And then I usually put a few things on the list that I can check off right away. (and I usually include at least a couple of things that I have already done so I can start off with a few items checked)

I have a pretty long list of "to do's" to do before tomorrow night. But none of them are huge things. I'll be able to get them all checked.

If I may be so bold, here are some things to add to your "to do" list: (the example in this picutre is a little too structured for me - it's much more fun to write down everything you can think of in random order and then ... oh, never mind. You probably wouldn't understand. Give Cheryl a hug and tell her she's a brave woman for following me around for so many years.)

Spend some time with your family. (I know. How can you when I have you up here every night? Well, make a point of giving extra hugs and kisses and help with homework and when you are with them don't watch TV, talk to them. Then make up for it next week by going some place special.)

Read the last few chapters of one of the Gospels. Read it in a different translation so you can see Christ's passion in a new light.

Pray for our presentations of Bow the Knee Hilldale's Passion Play 2008.

Rest your voice.

Wash your hands and stay away from sick people.

Monday, March 10, 2008

What Not to Wear - Part 2

We have two dress rehearsals this week. We need to be comfortable in our costumes before the first performance which is just a few days away.

If you do not have an angel costume or biblical costume you MUST see Heather TONIGHT!

We rehearse tonight at 6:00.

Here are a few things NOT to wear.



Bright undergarments that will show through your angel costume. And t-shirts (white, please) should not be seen at the neckline of your costume.

Wear a muscle/"A"/tank type t-shirt, or take some scissors to one of your old t-shirts.
As a side note. If you look for pictures of "wife beater" shirts you can find pics of half of the good 'ol boys South of the Mason-Dixon line showing off their biceps.