Wednesday, October 26, 2005

"I Heard an Old, Old Story..."

I taught a class at our last congregation that was all about singing and songs.

One of the things I did during the very first class was ask what every person's favorite worship song was and why. Some people smiled as they told everyone, some broke down and cried. In subsequent classes, we'd sing two or three songs and discuss the scriptures that went with them.

In any case, I was wondering the same about you guys. What's your favorite church song and why?

I'll start.

My fave is Jesus, Rose of Sharon. Part of the reason I love it is that we are speaking directly to Jesus when we sing it. "Jesus, Rose of Sharon, Bloom within my heart. Beauties of they truth and holiness impart."

Also, I appreciate that it brings in the symbolism of Jesus as a "Rose of Sharon". The term "Rose of Sharon" is used in Song of Solomon by the male writer to describe his wife. Song of Solomon has been referred to as the story of Christ's love for us as well.

Sharon is a place in ancient and modern day Israel that is the most fertile plain in the whole region. It receives regular rains and produces beautiful, strong, healthy crops. So, a "Rose of Sharon" would be considered the most beautiful, strong, and fragrant flower ever held.


Jamison said...

"just a closer walk with thee"

I like folk-sounding, old songs...

bigsip said...

Good one!

Yeah, man. The words to that song are great, too. Relationship song. You talk directly to Jesus in that one, too.

Diana said...

Blue skies and rainbows
and sun beams from heaven
are what I can see
cause my Lord is living in me
*Sing it, everyone!*
I know that Jesus is well and alive today
He makes his home in my heart
Nevermore will I be all alone since he
Promised me that we never would part

bigsip said...


I LOVE that song. Classic devotional song.

It's a great faith-affirming, feel-good song, too.

Diana said...

It makes me happy. I want everyone to sing that at my funeral.
Along with Let it be.

bigsip said...

Well, I hope the funeral isn't for a very long time.

BSAR...good song!

Diana said...


bigsip said...

Blue Skies and Rainbows (BSAR)

Diana said...


Jamison said...

BSAR is akin to the "pretty pretty pretty pretty butterfly" to my liking...

bigsip said...

I thought you might say that.

I like it. It's cute!

There are those songs I really don't like though...

Here are some that I think should be taken out of the book:

Little Brown Church in the Wildwood - talking about a church building...and who of us attended a little brown church? We're all Caucasian!

He Bore It All - Let's all get up and dance the Charleston! Jesus suffered and died on the cross! Geez Louise!

Sing and Be Happy - This song makes me want to vomit. It's probably one of the most shallow songs I've ever heard.

Sorry, I want this to be a positive blog...Y'all don't mind me. These are just some of the songs I won't lead.

Jamison said...

shelter in a time of storm...

bigsip said...

Another good one!

I like "The Greatest Commands", too.

bigsip said...

Where in the world are Mullins and Brew?

They must've started their own blog or something.

Come on guys! Speak to us!

mullinz8 said...

Sorry dudes I’ve been a bit under the weather and out. I’m not sure if I’m sticking around all day today either, work load is really light and I’m focusing on some out-of-Scripps projects for the church as well.

I have to tell you that there are a couple of dozen songs that almost bring me to tears when we sing them but I have no idea what they are.
Greatest Command is a song that’s sung with each of the four parts doing their own thing running from Alto, Bass, Tenor, & Soprano eventually running over each other in a beautiful collage of sound. If you’ve never heard it I’d like to invite each of you to church this Sunday and I’ll put in a request.

Step By Step originally written by Rich Mullins, no relation, is a great and simple song. I don’t like the c.o.C version because it’s a bit watered down. “Oh God, you are my God and I will ever praise you. I will seek you in the morning and I will learn to walk in your ways. And step by step you will lead me and I will follow you all of my days.”

“Pass Me Not” is another. Again this is not a good c.o.C song, well at least not a good white c.o.C song.

Another R. Mullins tune I’ve never heard congregationly sung is called “I Will Sing” and talk about a song made for Sipper…
I will sing for the meek
For those who pray with their very lives for peace
Though they're in chains for a higher call
Their mourning will change into laughter when the nations fall

In spirit poor
In mercy rich
They hunger for Your righteousness
Their hearts refined in the purity
Lord let me shine for them
Lord let me sing
Lord let me shine for them
Lord let me sing

bigsip said...

"The Greatest Commands" is a wonderful one. I love singing and leading it!

Love "Step by Step"...

I think I've heard "Pass Me Not", but not sure. Pretty sure I like it.

Never heard the last one, but the words are gorgeous. I want to learn it.

I'm generally no hard to please when it comes to worship music. I do have something of a distaste for most of the Stamps Baxter tunes, though.

Brewster said...

Sorry, I've been a little busy with things to write. And I've been having trouble coming up with a song. There are too many that I just love.

Wayfaring Stranger is one of my all time faves, though I've never heard it done well in church. But I love the idea of being a stranger in this land, and of dreaming of going home someday.

Create in me a clean heart is a grand devotional song as is WE Shall Assemble.

I tend to like the simple folkier songs as well. I dig some of the beautiful complicated ones to, but there is something about the simpler ones that enable us to sing them anywhere.

mullinz8 said...

sipp can you play iTunes forematted tracks?

tnmommieof2 said...

i love the greatest commands as well. and even though you dissed it sip, i love "he bore it all" for the simple fact that i can still see my grandpa leading that song and coming in with his deep bass...

its interesting because i have tons and tons of songs running thru my head right now and i can't pinpoint a favorite.

i really like the "songs before communion" the slower the beter as far as my reflection goes..

bigsip said...

Brew, I love WFS and WSA!

We do Wayfaring Stranger at the family music makings on occasion. It's one of those songs that's difficult to sing in assemblies because it's a bit difficult rhythmically.

That's why I love most of the devotional songs. They're easy for people of all musical ability to sing and have simple rhythms. So, they always sound good at church.

Sorry I dissed "'He Bore It All", Julianna. I just have visions of Flapper Girls when I hear it. The music doesn't really fit the words somehow. Oh well, it's a classic, though.

Another fave of mine is "There's a Light Guiding Me". It was the song I always led when I was a little boy.

A few more good ones:

Holy, Holy, Holy
Jesus, Thy Name I Love
We're Marching to Zion
Nearer, Still Nearer
Christ, We Do All Adore Thee
On Zion's Glorious Summit Stood
Nearer My God to Thee
Holy Ground
In His Presence
My Eyes Are Dry

Man, I could go on all day!

Brewster said...

We sang There is a Habitation at church yesterday. Another one of my faves, always makes me think of Tim Ketchum too.

I have to take a stand against your anti Sing and Be Happy stance Sipper.

I understand why a lot don't like it. The lyrics are pretty trivial and don't take into account the depth of human existence. Sorry, but a depressed man isn't going to get out of it just by singing.

However, it is a fun song to sing. It brings a smile through the melody. And while the lyrics are pretty saccarine, they aren't any more so than say "on the sunny side of the street" In a sense its saying that as christians we should be happy, that there is nothing in this world that can truly bring us down, for we're heaven bound.

bigsip said...

Understandable, Brew.

Hey, man. If you like it, you like it. We all have different opinions. So, sing and be happy!

Brewster said...

I have no real argument against you not liking it. I understand, really. But its just a fun song to sing. Were it not such an easy, enjoyable melody I'd probably hate it too.

Notice that I don't put it on my list of favorites though.

Jamison said...

i still think we should do the charleston

bigsip said...

We'll rename the "Charleston" to the "He Bore It".

He Bore It, He Bore It,
Made upon Golgotha!

Is this sacrilege?

I can't believe I'm posting this.