Setlist - 27 Sep 2015
Sunday morning at Kings

Tags: actions

  • [D] Let everything that has breath - Matt Redman
  • [G] Give thanks to the Lord - Chris Tomlin
  • [G] I reach up high - Judy Bailey
  • [G] Lord, I lift your name on high - Rick Founds
  • [F] I Need You Now - Matt Redman, Jonas Myrin, Scott Ligertwood
  • [F] All the Way My Saviour Leads Me - Fanny Crosby, Chris Tomlin, Matt Redman
  • [F] Amazing grace - John Newton

A very lively morning. Our first time leading 'action worship' at the DSU.

'Action worship' just means that Fay and Katie joined me to lead actions (USA: 'motions') for the first block of worship. We specifically aimed to include children in what we led. We decided on the phrase 'action worship' because most of the usual alternatives have connotations that we're trying to avoid.

After 'Give thanks to the Lord' Fay led 'alphabet praise' where she called out letters and we encouraged everyone to call back praise of God starting with that letter. It's a fun activity, particularly towards the end of the alphabet.

We taught the Kids Worship classic 'I Reach Up High' - a particularly useful song as the lyrics make a good case for doing actions. Fay had a great hook for the last line "In this song the actions praise his name/I want my actions every day to do the same": she encouraged us to come up with a mime of what we do in our day to day lives. Brilliant!

After the craziness of the first block, Ruth preached a stirring sermon on discipleship. The impact in the room was tangible. Matt Redman's 'I Need You Now' was a great response, likewise Chris Tomlin's arrangement of 'All the Way'.

I've had that version of 'All the Way' on my setlist quite a few times over the years, but I think that's the first time I've actually led it. It's a good rewrite. I usually prefer to use the traditional tune for hymns where possible, but I'm not a fan of the old melody for 'All the Way'. I don't think it's aged anything like as well as the lyrics. It turns out not many people at Kings knew the hymn in either version so it was basically a brand new song to us. Lots of people commented afterwards how much they liked it.

During the sermon Ruth mentioned a group of dementia patients singing 'Amazing Grace' even when they no longer recognised their loved ones. She was encouraging us to put down roots of discipleship that hold through the extremes of life. I've often reflected that as director of worship at Kings I have both the opportunity and the responsibility to teach people songs they might want to sing on their deathbeds. That perspective counts heavily in my decisions about repertoire. I'm not averse to teaching songs that are more ephemeral, but I'm always looking for those that have already or have the potential to last for decades and even centuries. That's one of the reasons we include time-tested hymns in the mix every week at Kings. I want to help train our hearts for a lifetime of worship.

It seemed deeply fitting to finish the meeting with a full voiced, a cappella 'Amazing Grace'.

Worship from cradle to grave.

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