Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Best Picture I Have Ever Seen

Well, at least it's the best picture I've seen in months and months - and still may be the best one ever.
I just don't really remember. Right now it is definitely my favorite.
Or was it this one?

If you don't know who these adorable children are then I'm sorry I haven't been with you enough
for you to know that they are my grandbabies!

What do pictures of my grandbabies have to do with my worship blog?
Hmmm, well, they definitely are one of God's wonderful blessings in my life.
It's my prayer that they each grow up to love the Lord with all their heart and serve Him
and do wonderful things for His Kingdom.
That they will live a life of worship.

Romans 12:1 NASB

 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.
You probably want that for your grandchildren too.

I think the best way for that to happen is for them to see it IN YOU!
Now get busy! :-)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

It's Wednesday and We Have a LOT to do!

If you are in Hilldale's choir then you know we have a lot to do. If you are one of my thousands (haha) of readers around the world you can read to see how busy we are. This is just a reminder of why it is important to be in choir tonight (and next week, and the next, and the next......)

First of all we are getting ready to sing at the Tennessee Baptist Pastor's Conference in November. November seems like a long way away since October doesn't get here until tomorrow, but November is just a few rehearsals away. We'll be joining up with three other choirs! Grace Baptist in Knoxville, Grace Baptist in Springfield and Lion's Creek Baptist in Strawberry Plains. They say the choir loft holds 240. We will probably end up with more than that. It should sound glorious with that many people singing together!

You'll need to know "For Your Name," "Hear the Call of the Kingdom," and "Our God Saves" by memory! (I'm pretty sure they'll have a way to show us words, but we won't be holding books!)

Then of course "the Tree" is coming up in December. We have only ten rehearsals before the dress rehearsal. YOU READ THAT CORRECTLY! TEN!

Here's the schedule:

Dec. 7 - 6:00 -  orchestra only (but soloists can come sing along)
Dec. 8 - 6:00 -  last rehearsal before the dress rehearsal
Dec. 9 - 6:00 - dress rehearsal
Dec. 10 - 6:30 call, 7:00 performance of "the Tree"
Dec. 11 - 6:30 call, 7:00 performance of "the Tree"
Dec. 12 - 2:30 call, 3:00 performance of "the Tree"

There are nine songs to learn. You can't learn them all in one week, so I'll be looking for you tonight!

However... as I say and have said over and over again.... The most important thing we do is lead in worship Sunday by Sunday. Of course we'll be singing songs for the Pastor's Conference on Sunday mornings in the next few weeks, and we have seen all of them in rehearsal, but for us to be our best we need all of us to be here on Wednesdays and Sunday mornings. Thank you soooo much for how you show up and sing so beautifully week after week! I'll look for you tonight and Sunday!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Where You Live - Memory Mon/Tues Day - September 28

I've always heard people say that God's timing is perfect. They usually say that when they have been waiting on an answer from God and haven't gotten one - or at least not the answer they wanted. I think that shows great faith - knowing that God is in control and will accomplish things in His time.

Sometimes people say that after they see God's answer and they realize that if things had happened when they wanted them to that they would have missed a blessing or they wouldn't have seen God do something really awesome in their lives.

And I believe it myself, that God's timing is perfect. I know from a long story that I wouldn't be in the house I am in if things had gone the way I had planned it. God has blessed me and Cheryl more than I deserve. And now it looks like I may have actually sold my "vacation" home. WOOHOO! "Vacation" home is just what I have called my house in Whites Creek for some time now. It just sounds better than "that old house of mine that has been on the market for two years because I put it up for sale a week before the big housing crash that still hasn't recovered." Yes. I've been making two house payments for a year now. (We lived there and commuted for a long time before God opened a way for us to move to Clarksville.)

As I was thinking about Memory Monday/Tuesday I wondered if I could find some verses that gave a biblical basis to the old saying, "God's timing is perfect."

We see in Galatians 4:4 NASB "But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son"

But we would expect that of Jesus. What about some old music guy who lives in Clarksville. Does God have perfect timing for me? I think so. But I'm not sure what verse I can quote for you. The one that keeps coming to mind while I type is Romans 8:28 NASB so that' going to be our memory verse for this week.

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

September 26 - Music for Worship

Come, Christians, Join to Sing

Hear Our Praises

Choir Anthem –Your Name

Fellowship song – Your Grace is Enough

Just a Closer Walk with Thee

Made Me Glad

Special Music – Traci Koon

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The End of the Old - the Start of the New

"Memory Tuesday" just doesn't have the ring of "Memory Monday" but I guess I should change the name to be more reflective of what really happens. Many things distracted me from blogging yesterday.

One thing that I was working on yesterday was the script for this year's Living Christmas Tree - fondly referred to most often as "the Tree." I was reading about Gabriel's announcement to Zacharias that he would have a son in his old age and they he should name him John. Gabriel said "you will have joy and gladness and many will rejoice at his birth.  Then Gabriel quoted one of the prophets "He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, 'to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children'"
So I had to look it up to see who Gabriel was quoting - and I probably already knew this, but was reminded again - that it was Malachi.

Now how cool is this? The very last two verses of the Old Testament are quoted by Gabriel as he is announcing the beginning of the New Covenant (with the birth of John the one to prepare the way for the Lord.) It gave me goose bumps to see that.

So that is what inspired today's "Memory Monday on a Tuesday."

ACTS 13:23 From the descendants of this man, according to promise, God has brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus,

That may seem like an odd verse to learn, but it reminds us that God keeps His promises and that Jesus fulfilled the promise made to David about his kingdom. Hundreds - maybe even thousands of other promises in the Old Testament were fulfilled through Jesus Christ. Read the first several chapters of Matthew some time and count how many times he says, "that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets." It's really cool to see!

Well, I'm back to script writing. Have a great week.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Music for Sunday, September 19

September 19, 2010 AM

Holy, Holy, Holy
You Are God Alone 

Here's a YouTube video of "You Are God Alone." Phillips, Craig and Dean singing it. (some guy and his family took the pictures) It's a little slow and they don't sing in a key that a congregation can sing in, but they have an incredible sound! Such wondrful harmony and blending of voices. This is from their CD "Let the Worshippers Arise." You should go out and buy this CD.

Choir Anthem – Rise Up
     Solo – Stephen Tucker

Fellowship song – Friend of God

The Old Rugged Cross
Covers Me for Life

(I looked for a video on YouTube of Covers Me for Life and couldn't find one. I guess I need to put a video of us singing it on YouTube. It is such a great song!)

Special Music – Andrew and Calli Smith

Hope  to see you all Sunday morning at 8:30 or 9:45.

ESL Update

I ain't gonna say ain't no more cuzz me and Joebob is gonna learn you some good English.

If you don't have a problem with that first sentence ESL probably shouldn't be your first ministry choice. Just thinkin' out loud... haha.

I'm very excited about our new ESL Ministry. We have around 20 people who are part of our team. We have had some great responses from people in the community.

For example - I was at one of the local restaurants last week and gave a poster to the gentleman at the register. He said, "I'll have to tell everyone about it." I was thinking, "I know. That's why I gave you the poster." As I was leaving one of the employees came over to see what we were talking about. I heard her say - very excitedly - "Oh! English classes! We have to go!"

We have decided on a curriculum that looks very good. It's called "Side by Side." When I ordered the teacher books the lady at Delta Publishing said it was their most popular product and always had the most orders. I was happy to hear that.

On Sunday afternoon, September 26, we will have our first ESL class. The first day is just an informal getting-to-know-you type meeting. We'll have refreshment, fill out enrollment forms and everyone gets to take a test. A test? Yes. We need to know how many need to be in a beginner class and how many in an intermediate class. We probably need an advanced class too, but we need to have some more teachers trained.

Speaking of training teachers... we're working with the Language Missions folks at the TBC (Tennessee Baptist Convention)TBC Language Missions to have an ESL training here in Clarksville next winter. This will allow several on our ESL Ministry Team to take the training so they can be certified ESL instructors.

So what can you do to be a part of this ministry?
Pray for us as ESL Ministry Team members that God will guide us in what we do and that we will be effective in our new ministry..
Pray for our students that they will come and not only learn some English, but will see the love of Christ and want to know more about Him.
Pray that in the weeks to come that we will have opportunities to share our faith with our students.
Tell others about this learning opportunity. Are there people you work with that would benefit from English classes? (and I don't mean your Southern friends who say "ain't" and use double negatives. They had their chance in 8th grade to learn English. haha)

Maybe there are parents of some of your child's classmates whose first language isn't English. They may be very excited to know that they could improve their English with free classes. (And we'll tell them they ain't suppose to say ain't.)

I'll keep you updated about how our ESL ministry is going. We're all excited! Woohoo!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Memory Monday - September 13

It's Memory Monday time again. How are you doing with memorizing new verses each week? I would like to say that I know many more verses now than I did at the beginning of the year, but I'm afraid I don't review enough. That's the difficult part - especially if you don't have someone that you can check yourself with each week. I guess I should have Cheryl start checking my memory. Of course she is happy if I "remember" to put my socks in with the dirty clothes each night.

Since this is the week of prayer for Tennessee State missions, I think I'll work on a "mission" verse. Part of what we do as Tennessee Baptists is to meet the physical needs of people in order that we can then later share with them the hope we have in Jesus Christ and then meet their spiritual needs. Bro. Larry used this verse last night in his - hmmm, he said it wasn't a sermon, but I think it really was - anyway, in his "talk" last night. It's a good verse for all of us to memorize.

James 2:14 What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works ? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and be filled," and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? 17 Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. 18 But someone may well say, "You have faith and I have works ; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works."

You probably won't memorize 5 verses, but the verse in red will be easy to memorize. Reading it in context of the other verses will help you remember the point of it.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Golden Offering and Sunday's Music

I've been a Tennessean for over twenty years now. I suppose I'll always be a Tennessean since my children and grandchildren are. Of course I'm still an Okie too. That's one of the cool things about living in the United States - everywhere you live you are part of that community and part of the United States but you're still connected to your home and roots.

One of the great things about being a Southern Baptist is that no matter where you live in the USA (or abroad) you are automatically connected to other Christians and wonderful mission work around the world. That mission work is funded primarily through the Cooperative Program giving of all our Southern Baptist Churches. Cooperative Program

As Southern Baptists we also support our missions through special offerings. The Lottie Moon Christmas Offering supports International Missions. The Annie Armstrong Offerings supports North American Mission Board missions and then in Tennessee we have the Golden Offering for State Missions. When I first moved to Tennessee it was called The Golden State Offering. I never could figure out why we were taking up an offering for California. Well, I guess I wasn't the only one that was a little confused, so they changed it to Golden Offering. Just like the Lottie Moon and Annie Armstrong offerings the Golden offering was named after a lady who had a huge heart for missions.

At Hilldale (for my readers from around the world - haha) we don't actually push these individual offerings - which is a good thing. I know that sounds terrible coming from a man who is died-in-the-wool 100% Southern Baptist. Several years ago we began encouraging our people to give to missions every month. Those missions dollars are divided up between Lottie and Annie and other missions organizations. We found that our missions giving is 10 times more this way. Think of it this way. A person may have given $20 to the Lottie Moon in the past. Now that person is giving $20 a month to missions. I wasn't a math major, but it seems pretty obvious that in the end that is a whole lot more giving to missions.

So why tell you all of that on my usual day for posting about Sunday's music? Because this coming week, Sept. 12 - 19, is the week of prayer for our state missions. We're going to sing some songs about God's great gift of salvation as a celebration of what God is doing across the state of Tennessee through our combined giving through the Gold Offering for State Missions.

Here's the entire service.

Jesus Saves
Mighty to Save

Choir Anthem – There is Joy
     Solo – Diane C.

Fellowship song – Rise Up and Praise Him

There is Power in the Blood
You Are My King

Special Music – Shannon Jones

Message – Dr. Larry D. Robertson

Invitation song – Are You Washed in the Blood?

Offertory – Debbie Bryant

See you Sunday! (If you live in Clarksville and don't go to another church already.)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Music for September 5

Summer is over. The weather is supposed to actually be cooler this weekend! The tobacco barns are smokin'. School is in full swing. It's time for you to get out of your summer vacation mode and get back involved in worship. Hebrews 10:25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.

Let the Worshippers Arise

Choir Anthem – There Is Joy
     Solo – Diane C.

Fellowship song – I Could Sing of Your Love Forever

With Bro. Larry's new sermon series on the blood of Christ, I know these songs will go right along with what he has to share.
Nothing but the Blood
My Hope (I love!! this song!!)

Special Music – Stephen Tucker