Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Songs of Faith and Praise

I have a confession to make. There are very few "new church songs" that I like. I can actually count them on one hand. I usually find myself just listening the the congregation sing those songs. It's not that I don't enjoy them or that I don't think they are beautiful, I just don't have an attachment to those songs. Yet. I'm from a generation that should be all about the new songs, but in church on Sunday I find myself more focused when I sing the songs that I KNOW. And when I say know, I mean the songs that have touched my life in someway. So many songs I can think of have special memories for me...

I remember singing Does Jesus Care in church the sunday after my aunt lost the only baby she was ever to carry.

I remember singing 728b over and over with Bonnie and Boyd.

I remember singing Thomas' Song in Mesquite on our last sunday there.

I remember singing Just As I AM (all verses and then the last verse 12 times) for the invitations in chapel at Harding with a certain person.

I remember listening to Ashlyn sing Cloudless Day over and over in the car when she was two.

and tons more songs that have special meanings to only me.

So many old classics that I love. And I know that I will someday (if not sooner rather than later) enjoy and be blessed by the new songs we sing now. Because at one time, weren't the classics new? I know what the true focus is of worship and I know where I am in worship. I'm lecturing myself here. But when I catch myself singing a song, it's usually the old traditional songs. So, I'm working on not picking and choosing what I sing, but worshipping with the song in my heart.

Any songs (and yes, they can be old OR new) that touch you for a special reason?


jenny biz said...

"It is Well With My Soul" is one of the most beautiful songs ever written (in my opinion, of course:). It is such a song of declaration of faith.
Love you!

amy said...

I love the old hymns, but one of my favorites is new(ish) - There's A Stirring. The hairs stand up on my arms every time I hear it. My girls love the few hymns they know. I am going to start teaching the kids some of my favorites - that is one of the few traditions I grew up with that I actually want to pass along :o) How can you not sing & tap your toes to great oldies like I'll Fly Away?

amy said...

Jenny, you are so right! That always brings tears to my eyes.

Chad Gardner said...

Thomas' Song is one of my favorites as well. The words of the song paint such a vivid picture in my mind of the crucifixion.

I also like My Eyes are Dry. It reminds me that there are times when my faith will be cold, but that God will always be there for me and waiting on me to come back into His arms.

Stephanie said...

I love many of the old songs as well as many of the new. I'm very blessed that I come from a congregation that is open to singing both.

For the old, I never get tired of singing "Up in Paradise Valley." For the new, I really like "My Eyes are Dry" as well and I love singing "This is the Air I Breathe" by Michael W. Smith. Sometimes we sing it in Middle and High school Devos.

That's just a sample. There are way too many more songs I can name.

Deborah said...

I don't know if you would consider this an "old" song (I guess I do, since it's been around for about thirty years), but I love "Glorify Thy Name". It is so simple, yet profound at the same time. I also love "Nearer Still Nearer."

My favorite song of all time is "In Christ Alone," which some would consider an old song.

I cannot wait to tell Ken Young that you classified "Thomas' Song" as an old song--he will love it!

Scott & Ashley said...

Scott: I remember sitting in the second row pew in a small country church in Illinois, tears rolling down my face as we sang "I need thee every hour." I could hardly sing I was so choked up.
Ashley: Mine has to be when I realized how badly I needed Jesus..I was in my parents living room, popped in a worship CD that I'd heard a few times, and started belting "Jesus, lover of my soul." See, I'm more of a new song person since I didn't grow up singing the old hymns
Both: We really love "Blessed be the name"

Richard said...

I remember as a kid singing 'Ten Thousand Angels'. I classified that as my favorite song as a kid. Every time we sing 'The Old Rugged Cross' I think of my dad and his dad since that was their favorite songs. Both songs remind me of my youth growing up in the church.

Kim said...

This is a great post and a topic we have discussed greatly.

My main concern with songs are their Biblical accuracy...I love the great hymns...Be Thou My Vision...And Can It Be?...Praise to the Lord The Almighty....It is Well with My Soul...etc...I love to hear our congregation sing out to the Lord...where the voices and facial expressions are so joyful and thankful! I would say though that there are even some more traditional hymns that are not Biblically sound,though...so we must be careful and pray for our worship leaders as they discern this.

The new songs that I love still have to meet this same criteria...Biblically soundness. I love Townend and Getty songs...(In Christ Alone,etc) Also we have some great hymn writers in our church that write rich songs that have meaning to what we are learning from preaching...that is especially worshipful. There are some newer songs that are very good.

So, all in all, I prefer hymns...the ones who have stood the test of time...but I think there are some good new ones,too.

What I do not think is right is the philosophy that so many chuches have taken that they must *do* church a certain way to get people to come...that is not a reason to choose certain songs...Just my opinion.

Okay--I'll stop now!

You have a precious family.

edensfamily said...

good topic--I agree with Jenny, "It is Well with my soul" will touch you at any stage in life. I love a mixture of both, but I would have to say my favorites right now are Blessed Be Your Name and Lifesong.

Danna said...

I have so many songs that I love, songs that remind me of my family, songs that remind me of when I decided to give my life over to Christ and also the songs that make my spirit swell everytime I hear them. I will say however, whatever mood, happy or sad, I love the song "Faithful Love". I sing all the time, or i just hummm the melody, while cleaning the house, doing homework, or just sitting by myself in the quiet and I feel a song come on and I have to sing this song. Great topic Melanie, and thank you for the prayers, I will call you soon to talk, LOVE YOU!!!

Amber Smith said...

This has to be one of my favorite subjects! I have SO many favorite songs it is hard to narrow it down to just a few. Many of my favorite songs are old hymns, mainly because I think the language in the older hymns is often more beautiful and deep. Some older hymns that I especially love are "Jesus, What A Friend For Sinners","Dear Lord and Father of Mankind", "Be With Me Lord", "Purer In Heart O God", and "Hallelujah,What A Savior". There are some great new songs, too, but I hope we never stop singing the old ones. Great topic!

Liz Moore said...

One thing I love about Highland Oaks is the mixture of songs we sing both old and new. One of my current most favorite songs is How Great is Our God. I love that song!

Ronda said...

I love the old classics, too. One song that has a special meaning for me is "I Can't Feel at Home in This World Any More". I remember sitting in chapel at the Christian Academy and bawling while singing this song. It was the first time that it really hit me that even when I am among Christians, this is truly just the land of my sojourn. So when I feel that tug of "the world" or sometimes feel like I just don't "fit in" I think back to that day in chapel and remember that I'm really not supposed to. Another song that touches my heart is How Great Thou Art. My grandfather used to lead singing at Church when I was little and this was one that he led frequently. I love this one because it speaks of God's awesome power and reminds me that if I will just take the time to listen, He is speaking to me through everything that He has created.

Anonymous said...

Yes. I love the old songs. They are "singable". So many of the new songs aren't, unless you've got a fantastic range... God didn't make us all like that.

At http://www.vashtisolutions.com/lemuelmixonsongsoffaithandpraisesaxpiano.html you'll find a link to iTunes with some great old songs set to Sax and piano. Really enjoyable.