(originally delivered as a Christmas Eve devotional at Sun River Church, Rancho Cordova, on December 24, 2019)
Let’s talk about the angels and the shepherds, and the song, Hark! The Herald Angels Sing. First, in case you’re not sure, the word “Hark” basically means: Listen up! Check it out! This is important! You know the word, because of the song. But you probably don’t use it in your everyday language. It’s kind of an interesting word though. It’s almost onomatopoeic. Yup, that’s a real word, too. It means “a word that sounds like what it means.” Like, “bang,” or “sizzle,” or “bark.” Hark! It definitely gets your attention. Especially when yelled. Or when coming out of the mouth of an angelic being!
But what about “Herald”? That’s not a real common word these days, either. No, the song is not called Hark the Herald Angels Sing because the lead Angel singer was named Harold. The word “Herald” means to proclaim or announce. This is why so many newspapers have the word Herald in their name. The Daily Herald, the Herald News. These angels were proclaiming the most important news ever.
But what about the shepherds? Why shepherds? Continue reading
Acts 2:45 “All the believers were together and had everything in common, selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.” This is what Jesus was talking about (I think) when He told the parable of how the Kingdom of God is like a hidden treasure – the man sells everything he has to obtain it. These first Christians really believe that the Kingdom of God was so important and valuable that they sold everything in order to be a part of it. Continue reading
Come with me and let’s reflect on a beautiful psalm of praise! The first three verses are so appropriate for a worship leader, or anyone living a lifestyle of worship – so I had them printed on a t-shirt along with this image:
I love the idea of the guitar being the roots that produce a beautiful rose. The thought of music reaching so far deep into the earth, into the soil, into the soul, and only the beautiful, colorful, vibrant and living work of art is visible above ground. Continue reading
Last Sunday morning I decided to begin our sound check by simply reading a worshipful Psalm. I remembered Psalm 145 being particularly worshipful so I pulled it up on my phone read a few verses to myself and decided this was definitely the one!
I started reading out loud for the whole worship team, intending to read 4, 5 or maybe even 8 verses and then stop…but I couldn’t stop! And the band was into it! There were spontaneous “Yes, Lord!”s and “Amen”s, and “Thank You, God”s. It was possibly the most worshipful reading of scripture I’ve experienced in a group. Have you had an experience like that? I hope so. Of course it doesn’t have to be in a group. Reading scripture is absolutely one of the best ways you can worship God. That’s what it was designed for!
I had so much fun simply reading through this Psalm that I wanted to spend some more time with it. So come along with me and let’s read and reflect on these truths together [my own thoughts of praise are written within brackets and italicized]: Continue reading