IMG_9398.jpgWell, it’s been QUITE some time since I last wrote here, but you all know by now what a terrible blogger I am, so I won’t dwell on that, but to say I’m going to be making a concerted effort to begin blogging far more regularly, if for no other reason than it’s good for me.

Anyway, at this point, we’ve been back from Korea for a little over two months, and we do indeed miss the Community of Joy and all its members, but it’s been great to be back home as well, and re-experience North American worship services with the knowledge that we gained from our time overseas.

This Sunday, I departed a little from my usual plan, and went to the 11:00 service at Allison Church rather than the 9:15 which is closer to home for me. I had a couple of reasons for this, both involving my plans to get involved in Allison’s music ministry since it looks like we’re in Moncton for a little longer than we had initially hoped (but that’s a story for another day, and probably isn’t why you’re reading today’s post).

This Sunday, being the third week of Advent, was the third week in Allison’s ‘Christmas with Izzy’ series, where we talk about the relevance of Isaiah to the New Testament, specifically the Christmas story. We were also treated to a presentation by the children’s ministry, with fairy tale characters talking about the Christmas story.

For this week’s chapter in the Izzy saga, Dave looked at Isaiah 40, leading us from the point of Isaiah saying, “The King is coming” to saying, “The King has come”. One of the most thought-provoking points that Dave brought up (that also happens to be the one that’s far to easy to leave at church and not take home with us) was that God calls us to SHOUT. ‘Shout for what?’ asks Isaiah. “HERE IS YOUR GOD” (see Isa 40.6-11). Dave makes the point that we find it so easy to shout at sporting events or at the visit of celebrities, but we seem to have a problem shouting for the King of kings. We don’t hesitate to shout our excitement about earthly things, but we often pause when it comes to shouting about the Word who became flesh and dwelt among us (see John 1.14).

We certainly need always to be willing to give an answer for the faith that we have, and this time of year is among the best times to do that, which is exactly why Dave said that Allison is doing multitudinous Christmas Eve services at both campuses.

For the music this morning, John and his team led, putting together a great blend of music that I know I appreciated. The list went something like this:

Opening music:

  • Meet With Me (Ten Shekel Shirt)
  • It Came Upon a Midnight Clear (with an extra chorus that I wasn’t familiar with)
  • Emmanuel (Hallowed Manger Ground) (Tomlin)

Next came the Children’s presentation, followed by a baby dedication, and the congregation joined the kids in singing their song.

Then, before the sermon, we sang Silent Night, after which Dave shared with us, and we closed with the chorus to Emmanuel as we had sung earlier.

Please feel free to head on over to Fred McKinnon’s blog and share about your worship services as part of his Sunday Setlists blog carnival. You don’t have to be a worship leader to participate, all you need to do is blog about the church service you attended this week.