Set List, 03/03 - 03/04/12 Fellowship Bible Church

This weekend, we continued our Romans series, focusing on Romans 10:8 - 17. In his message, Joe taught about God's plan of salvation for the nations, and how we must be the ones to go and tell about what Jesus has done. We are participants in the gospel, and God calls us into spreading the message to the people we encounter. We are the only option - as Joe says, "There is no Plan B." You can listen to the entire message here. Here's our service plan from this weekend:

"Say Say" (Bb) [Christy Nockels, Kristian Stanfill, Chris Tomlin] Welcome/Greeting Time Call To Worship "Glorious Day" (B) [Michael Bleecker, J. Wilbur Chapman] "Stronger" (B) [Ben Fielding, Reuben Morgan] "Jesus Paid It All" (B) [John T. Grape, Elvina M. Hall, w/ additional chorus by Alex Nifong] Time of Reflection/Prayer Message - "Romans 10:8 - 17" [Joe Hishmeh] Communion Intro Communion Song - "Your Great Name" (Bb) [Michael Neale, Krissy Nordhoff] Taking of Elements Song Reprise - "Your Great Name" (Bb) Offering/Announcements Dismissal

"Say Say" - Because of the focus passage for this weekend (which includes Romans 10:9 - "if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved"), we opened our services with this song. We taught this song to our congregation a few months ago, and haven't sung it too frequently since that time. It was one of the first that I introduced here to Fellowship. I love the call of this song on our lives, for us to declare with boldness and sincerity that Jesus is King. This song inspires confidence in the truth of the gospel, and these are the kinds of words I think we need to be encouraging one another with when we sing together in worship.

"Glorious Day" - This is a song that we began teaching a few weeks ago, and I continue to love how this song ties the past, present, and future of the gospel message all together. I think it is a solid song of celebrating what Christ has accomplished at the cross and in His resurrection, and also what He will accomplish in His return. We have many amazing reasons to worship our King!

"Stronger" - This song, while written somewhat recently, has the feel (in the lyric, anyway) of being almost like a creed. I love the simple declarations throughout the song, and the bridge sings of exalting Jesus' name because of what He has done. It is also one of the few new worship songs that is truly in 3/4, which gives it a unique feel throughout. I really enjoy singing this song, and singing out what Jesus has accomplished.

"Jesus Paid It All" -This song is one of our favorites here, and for good reason. It is a simple confession of our dependence on Jesus and His finished work on the cross, and a powerful declaration of praise for what He accomplished for us in His resurrection. We were dead, but now we are alive in Him, and that is the main motivation we have sing and exalt Him.

"Your Great Name" - This song is new to our congregation, so we introduced it during our communion time this weekend. I first heard this from the writer, Michael Neale, at a conference in Florida. It was made popular by Natalie Grant. What I found interesting is that Natalie Grant sings the harmony during the chorus and the bridge, but sings it as though it is the melody. Both the harmony and the melody of this song are very nice lines, so it works really well. I love this song because it clearly declares the name of Jesus and exalts Him for who He is and what He has done. There is salvation and power in no other name, and we should speak it out with confidence, hope, and faith. Our congregation really connected with this song (surprisingly so), and we will definitely be singing it together again. The video to which I linked in the title of the song also has the lyric on it. I'd love to hear your thoughts about this song, and if you have sung it in your congregations.

This weekend was a strong weekend of worship with a very clear focus on the gospel and on proclaiming it to the world around us.  I love celebrating the Lord's Supper with our congregation, and remembering what Jesus has done. He is so good and faithful to us, even when we are faithless. He is so worthy of all of our praise and glory!

I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were!

In the Son, Bill

p.s. don't forget to check out The Worship Community!

Set List, 07/16 - 07/17/11 Fellowship Bible Church

This week, our focus was Philippians 4:8-9, and Joe preached on "An Appraisal of Thoughts." This passage calls us out on the way we think about things: "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me--practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you." We can either think on the things of God or the things of this world. The question is: where are our thoughts directed most of the time? I think we were all challenged about our thought lives as a result. For the songs this weekend, we focused on the glory of God, His sovereign might and power, and His unique worth--all pointing to the fact that Jesus is the one most worthy of our thoughts. Here's our service order from this weekend:

Pre-Service - "Say Say" (A) [Christy Nockels, Kristian Stanfill, Chris Tomlin] Call to Worship - Psalm 40:5-8 Prayer "Glory to God Forever" (Bb) [Steve Fee, Vicky Beeching] Camp Barnabas Student Testimonies/Offering Welcome/Announcements/Greeting Time "Let Me Sing" (Bb) [Todd Fields] "Always" (Bb) [Kristian Stanfill, Jason Ingram] Scripture Reflection - Psalm 97:1-5 "Lord of All" (Bb) [Kristian Stanfill] Prayer Message - Philippians 4:8-9 - "An Appraisal of Thoughts" [Joe Hishmeh] Response - "Psalm 19" (D) [Terry Butler] Dismissal (You may notice a little more detail in the set list/service order this week. I decided to begin including every element of our service, to give a better picture of our flow and what we incorporate week-to-week.) 

"Say Say" - This is a song that we began teaching a few months ago, and the focus of believing and thinking about the truth that Jesus Christ is God and King made it a solid fit for this week's services.

"Glory to God Forever" - We used this song because it points to God as our Creator and the One who has given us breath, and also provides an opportunity for us to respond with faith and commitment. I have written a lot about this song in the past, so suffice to say that I really love and latch onto the bridge of this song, and the prayer for God to take our lives and use them for His glory.

"Let Me Sing" - This is the second consecutive week that we have taught this song to our congregation. It is a song that was used a while back, long before I arrived here, but it needed some "dusting off," as many in our congregation has recently started attending over the past year. In this instance, the same process of teaching applies, because a song isn't familiar or part of our worship vocabulary anymore. So, we will teach it one more week, and then bring it back a few weeks after that to solidify it in our vocabulary and collective memory.

"Always" - This is another song that we taught a few weeks ago, and it was time to bring it back as a reminder. In Joe's message, he focused partially on worry and thinking on things that are not trusting or depending on God. This song speaks to that kind of thinking, in a powerful declaration of faith and confidence in God's ability to affect our situation, no matter how impossible it may seem. I love the truth of this song, and the way in which it is presented. It's a strong way to affirm our confidence in Christ.

"Lord of All" - We led into this song by reflecting on a passage from Psalm 97, from which a large portion of this song derives. The passage, in the NLT, reads

The Lord is king! Let the earth rejoice! Let the farthest islands be glad. Clouds and darkness surround Him. Righteousness and justice Are the foundation of His throne. Fire goes forth before Him And burns up all His foes. His lightning flashes out across the world. The earth sees and trembles. The mountains melt like wax before the Lord, Before the Lord of all the earth.

I love the imagery of this Psalm, as it gives both a sense of mystery and of omnipotence. Rather than fear, the Psalmist calls everyone to "rejoice" because "The Lord is king." God's just and righteous reign is indeed cause for celebration and for worship. He is the almighty ruler of everything, and He will always do what is right and good. I believe there is great hope for us when we consider these things. We don't have to worry about injustice being left unresolved. God will make everything right. He will fix everything. As my daughter's Bible says (my paraphrase), "God will undo everything that is wrong."

This song has become a favorite of our congregation, and rightfully so. This song lifts the Lord up like He deserves to be. It speaks the truth about His almighty power, His glory, His uniqueness, His sovereignty, His wisdom, and His worth. I don't think there's ever a bad time to sing these things.

"Psalm 19" - I first heard this song done by Shane & Shane in 2003 (although it was written in 1995). The prayer of this song, coming directly from Psalm 19:14 - "Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer (ESV)" - was a great fit for the focus of Joe's message. While it was a little unfamiliar for our congregation, it has enough repetition that it is easy to pick up, and our congregation was participating by the end. I encouraged us to make this our prayer in response to the message.

It was a solid weekend of gathering together to worship our King. Despite the fact that early into the first service on Saturday night, I began going hoarse. My throat didn't hurt, yet my voice was disappearing randomly. After I walked off the platform, I went straight to the water and brewed some tea, and that got me through the rest of the night without a problem. I think I might have been a little dehydrated, because I didn't drink much water on Saturday until the evening. I think I've learned my lesson.

On a sad note, this weekend was the last weekend serving with one of our core worship team members, Hannah Anderson. She is moving to Colorado Springs next weekend to begin teaching kindergarten for a school there. Her joyful and encouraging presence for our church and our worship and arts ministry, along with her talent as both a vocalist and keyboardist, will be sorely missed. She will be a tremendous blessing to a congregation in Colorado and to her new students. I am thankful for the opportunity to have served with her for these past six months, and the team and I are praying for her on her new adventure.

I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were. Be sure to check out The Worship Community's Sunday Set Lists to see what other leaders and worshipers experienced this weekend.

In the Son,

Bill

Question time: what is your favorite song for worship? Join the conversation below!

Set List, 04/09 - 04/10/11 Fellowship Bible Church

Here's our set from this weekend: "God Is Alive" (A) [Steve Fee and Eddie Kirkland] Call to Worship - Psalm 96:1-4, 10a "Say, Say" (A) [Kristian Stanfill, Chris Tomlin, and Christy Nockels] Welcome/Offering/Announcements/Greeting "Everlasting God" (Bb) [Brenton Brown and Ken Riley] "It Is Well" (Bb) [Todd Fields, Philip Paul Bliss, and Horatio G. Spafford] "Stronger" (Bb) [Ben Fielding and Reuben Morgan] Message - "I Believe: Questions & Answers" [Joe Hishmeh] Response - "All To Us" [Matt Maher, Matt Redman, Jesse Reeves, and Chris Tomlin]

This week we introduced Steve Fee and Eddie Kirkland's "God Is Alive" to our congregation. We began teaching it today in preparation for Easter. I cannot think of a more fitting lyric for celebrating Christ's victory over sin and death through His death and resurrection. I think it is one of the best modern songs that have been written for Easter. The solid lyric and high energy of the song  are a perfect fit for celebrating Jesus' resurrection:

"God Is Alive"

Verse 1 Let the darkness flee It's got no power over me I have been set free God is alive

Verse 2 Death where is your sting? Sin had got no hold on me I am free indeed God is alive

Pre-Chorus We've been redeemed So rise and sing

Chorus Everyone, glorify the risen Son The Holy One has overcome Jesus is alive The enemy is broken underneath His feet Death is crushed in victory Jesus is alive, Jesus is alive

Verse 3 Let us wake and rise Lift your voices, lift your eyes We're gonna shout, we're gonna shake the skies God is alive

Bridge The empty grave is singing now It's shouting out He is alive, He is alive And we are free

We also brought back "Say Say" for the closing message of our "I Believe" series. It is a fitting declaration for this series, as it sings in the chorus: "Say, say, say you believe it/ Sing for the whole world to hear it/ We know and we declare it/ Jesus is King/ Say, say, say you believe it/ Sing loud, sing like you mean it/ We know and we declare it/ Jesus is King." After doing this series for ten weeks, this is where we must land. After all we have seen and heard about the greatness of God, the proper response is to go out a proclaim the truth and greatness of the name of Jesus and His gospel to the world. We need to know what we believe to be able to communicate that message clearly to others.

This week, we also introduced our new pastor of ministries, J.D. Holt. He just finished making the 2100-mile trip from Bellingham, WA to Topeka to begin working with us. I am excited about having him on our team, and about the leadership and experience he will bring to managing our staff team. He's a great guy, and I really look forward to getting to know him and his wife, Christy. I was nervous as we were searching for the man to fill this role, as my experience has shown it to be crucial to the personality of the staff team. I believe our prayers have been answered in J.D., and we are very grateful!

After the welcome time, we started the second set of music with "Everlasting God." From Isaiah 40, this song paints a powerful picture of God and His attributes. As we sing the chorus, "You are the everlasting God/ The everlasting God/ You do not faint, You won't grow weary/ You're the defender of the weak/ You comfort those in need/ You lift us up on wings like eagles," I cannot help but see not only a description of God's greatness, but a call to God's people to be like their heavenly Father. As I sing, I feel challenged to defend the weak and comfort those in need as I am strengthened by the Lord. This song is a favorite of our congregation, and I don't mind at all - this is a solid song from the Scriptures that speaks of the unchanging, everlasting greatness of our God.

We followed this song with Todd Field's hymn rewrite, "It Is Well." I have said it before, but I'll say it again: this is one of my favorite hymn rewrites. It preserves the original verses intact, with a very cool acoustic arrangement underneath, has a very fitting new chorus, and it even includes the original hymn's refrain at the end. I love how it ties the old and the new in a fresh way. It always brings us to worship as we celebrate God's faithfulness.

We finished this set with "Stronger," by Reuben Morgan and Ben Fielding. We're dusting this one off for Easter, because it is a clear anthem about God's great power to save and conquer sin and death. This was the first time I have led this song with a band. It was one that I began teaching in one venue where I was previously, but I never had the opportunity to bring it into our main services because I ran out of time. I love the chorus: "You are stronger/ You are stronger/ Sin is broken/ You have saved me/ It is written/ Christ is risen/ Jesus, You are Lord of all." The use of the word "stronger" is refreshing, because it takes the common "mighty" or "powerful" ideas and uses our current language to express it. This song reminds me to write in such a way that captures the truth of the Scripture in vibrant, current language that our congregations can take hold of and sing from their hearts. It is easier for the "average Joe" to connect with words we normally use than it is to connect with erudite language. This song does that well.

We finished the services with "All To Us," which also effectively connects with the sum of this "I Believe" message series. I struggled with using this song in the beginning, because when the phrase "all to us" is taken at face value, it could be easily misunderstood to mean something like, "God exists for our sakes." However, its meaning is more along the lines of, "God is everything to us." He is our sufficiency and our strength, our foundation and our confidence. May this truly be our declaration, that God is our everything. He is the only one that we need. He is the only one on whom our hope should be built.

It was a great weekend of worship. Zach Pruett stepped up and played bass for the first time in our weekend services, and he did a great job, after only playing bass for five months! Bob Fulmer did a great job adjusting to the click track for the first time ever. His attitude was admirable in saying, "It will make me a better player." I hope for each of us that difficulties and challenges are seen as opportunities to better ourselves and to better serve our church and the kingdom of God with our abilities. The rest of the team did a great job, as usual, and it was a great joy to lead with them again. Our tech team is so faithful to do a great job each week, and they make it easy for each of us to do our part. I feel that each week we are strengthening and improving, and there are great things on the horizon for this worship and arts ministry. Also, the Aviom system continues to be an asset to give us more time to rehearse and prepare for the weekend, and that has been very apparent in the way we play.

I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were. Please visit The Worship Community to check out their Sunday Set Lists to see what other leaders and team members did this weekend in their contexts. Leave your comments below and join the conversation about our worship ministry and the songs we sing together.

In the Son,

Bill

Set List, 02/19 - 02/20/11 Fellowship Bible Church

Here's our set from this weekend: "I Will Go" (F#m) [Starfield - Tim Neufeld, Jon Neufeld] Call To Worship - 2 Cor. 5:20-21 "Say Say" (A) [Kristian Stanfill, Chris Tomlin, Christy Nockels] Living Water International Honduras Report Welcome/Announcements/Greeting "Holy is the Lord" (G) [Chris Tomlin, Jesse Reeves, et al] "I Stand Amazed" (G) [Charles Hutchinson Gabriel, arr. by Chris Tomlin] "Wonderful Maker" (G) [Chris Tomlin, Matt Redman] Message - "I Believe: We Are"  [Joe Hishmeh] Response: "Mighty to Save" [Ben Fielding, Reuben Morgan]

This weekend of worship was yet another good one. The team gelled well, played solidly, and was sensitive to where the Lord was leading during each of the four services. I feel like the entire worship team is getting some traction for moving forward. I felt like the worship team was all prepared for the week's music, and it was somewhat easy to put everything together as a result. We were able to make some changes on the fly as people were responding to God, and it was a beautiful thing. There were moments this weekend when the congregation was singing louder than I've ever heard them. I am very excited about what the Lord is doing in our midst.

This week has been one where I learned a great deal about the landscape of our worship ministry and where things have been until today. My worship associate, Jason, did some investigating, and dug up what our church has sung in worship since the switch to four services back in August. I was a little surprised by the results: 90 songs in 28 weeks. That comes out to a little more than 3.2 unique songs per week! What does that mean? It means people do not really have a chance to learn any of the songs or make them part of their worship vocabulary. It means our people are stuck staring at the projector screen trying to see the words and learn the songs.

My takeaway? We need to start repeating songs more often, so we can teach our people and get them "off the page" just like we want the band to be "off the page." When we don't have to stay glued to a screen or our music to know the song, then it is part of our vocabulary, and we are able to use it easily to express ourselves to God. Then, it comes from within us. Then we can truly put ourselves into what we are doing, rather than worrying more about what we are doing. We can focus on doing it. My normal method for doing this is to repeat a new song for three weeks, and surround it with songs that are already part of the worship vocabulary of our people.

My first opportunity for implementing this was "Say Say." This was our third week singing this song, and I believe we have now added that song to our worship vocabulary as a congregation. I think the song communicates a simple but strong message to us, challenging us to stand up and "declare" that "Jesus is King." Our praise of our great God ought not to be something that only happens within the walls of a church's building, but ought to be happening for the whole world to see. Our exalting of God ought to be a very public thing, both individually and corporately. This idea can be extended to all areas of our lives, as living our lives as living sacrifices is how we worship our God on a daily basis. Thus, loving and serving others is a way that we declare the glory of our God to our world. It is easy to hunker down, get comfortable, and feel safe in our space each week, but what we do weekly as the church gathered together should be a culmination of a week lived in daily worship of our God. That is my prayer for us.

In the same vein, we introduced Starfield's "I Will Go," which is one of my favorite newer songs. It is a very driving, high-energy song, but the message warrants it, I think. Here's the lyric of that song:

VERSE 1 To the desperate eyes and reaching hands To the suffering and the need To the ones the world has cast aside Where you want me I will be

CHORUS I will go, I will go, I will go, Lord send me To the world, to the lost, to the poor and hungry Take everything I am I’m clay within your hands I will go, I will go send me

VERSE 2 Let me not be blind with privilege Give me eyes to see the pain Let the blessing You’ve poured out on me Not be spent on me in vain Let this life be used for change

BRIDGE I wanna live for You, Go where You lead me I wanna follow You

I still get the feeling that I'm pushing the envelope a little for some of our people, but I think we are being challenged as a people by the lyrics of these songs and by the messages that are comprising this "I Believe" series. I think it is worth the risk of pushing a little bit. "I Will Go" is a song that can work in a variety of treatments, and I have tried it successfully as a response song with more of an acoustic feel to it. It will be one we use frequently, because there are not many songs that say it quite so boldly.

For the second set of songs, we put together a few modern worship standards: "Holy is the Lord," "I Stand Amazed (How Marvelous)," and "Wonderful Maker." "Wonderful Maker" was very fitting for Joe's message today about the image of God and the fall of humanity. It deals directly with God's goodness in creation and God's declaration that what He made was "good." It also deals with God's goodness in redemption. This song holds a special place in my life, because it signaled a turning point in my worship leadership. This song is solely focused on God and who He is, and barely even mentions us in the process ("we" is used once in the third verse). Many of the worship songs I sang in youth group and elsewhere were about the singers and what God could do for us. This song was markedly different in that regard. This song helped me to see what true worship was - about God, to God, and for God. It was not for us. From that point late in 2002 (after Chris Tomlin's Not to Us was released), my view of, and priorities in, worship music were changed. Every time I sing or hear this song, I remember that change, and I am called back to the true priority in worship, which is our great God and Savior.

We closed the service out with "Mighty to Save," which was the highlight of the weekend for me. Joe's message was a heavy one dealing with our depravity. He didn't pull any punches, and helped all of us see ourselves and our sin clearly in light of God's holiness and goodness. When we see God as He is, we see ourselves rightly. And when we see the depth and gravity of our own sin, we see just how great and truly amazing the grace of God really is. When we came to "Mighty to Save," this was our context. When we sang, "Savior, He can move the mountains/ Our God is mighty to save/ He is mighty to save," we meant it, for we had just finished hearing and reading the Word of God as it spoke to our spiritual condition without Christ. The congregation was singing out at this point in each of the services, and it was a powerful moment of worship. To God be the glory. May we never forget that we were dead in our sins when Christ came in to rescue us and make us alive.

I feel privileged for the opportunity to build and develop our worship & arts ministry at Fellowship Bible Church, and I am thrilled about what the future holds for our congregation!

I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were.

In the Son,

Bill

Sunday Set Lists

Set List, 02/12 - 02/13/11 Fellowship Bible Church

Here's our set from this weekend: Pre-Service: "Say Say" (A) [Christy Nockels, Chris Tomlin, Kristian Stanfill] Call To Worship -  Hebrews 13:8 "Unchanging" (G) [Chris Tomlin] Welcome/Offering/Announcements/Greeting "Hosanna" (G) [Brooke Fraser, arr. by Starfield] "How Great is Our God" (G) [Chris Tomlin, Jesse Reeves, Ed Cash] Focus: "Phos Hilaron"/"Hail Gladdening Light" "Joyous Light" (G) [unknown, John H. Gower; Arr. and additional chorus by Chris Tomlin, David Crowder, and Louie Giglio] Message - "God Is: Trinity" [David Hinkle] "Holy Holy Holy" (D) [Reginald Heber and John Bacchus Dykes]

This weekend in worship with Fellowship was one of my favorites so far. It felt like everything connected really well, and that the focus of the morning permeated everything. The message for the weekend was about the doctrine of the Trinity, and Pastor David did a great job of communicating the understanding and the significance of this doctrine for the Church. There was a lot of ground to cover, and it was thick subject matter, but I think the message was clear, and people walked away with something to cling to for practical purposes in their Christian life. David ended with the idea that we are to live our lives "To the Father, by the Son, and through the Spirit."

We chose two main songs to emphasize and support the teaching time and bring our people to a point of worshiping in a "trinitarian" way: "Joyous Light" and "Holy Holy Holy." "Joyous Light" is a song that I value highly, as it is based off of the earliest known hymn for the church, "Phos Hilaron." Before teaching this song to our congregation, I read a translation of "Phos Hilaron," known as "Hail Gladdening Light." Here is that text:

"Phos Hilaron"

Hail, gladdening Light, of His pure glory poured Who is the immortal Father, heavenly, blest, Holiest of Holies--Jesus Christ our Lord!

Now we are come to the sun's hour of rest; The lights of evening round us shine; We hymn the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit divine!

Worthiest art thou at all times to be sung with undefiled tongue, Son of our God, giver of life, alone: Therefore in all the world Thy glories, Lord, Thy own. Amen.

It's an amazing thought that we can join in a song that the church has song since the 3rd century A.D. (almost 1700 years ago!). The writers of "Joyous Light" put it this way:

"Joyous Light"

Verse 1 Hail Gladdening Light, Sun so bright Jesus Christ, End of night Alleluia

Verse 2 Hail Gladdening Light, Eternal Bright In evening time, ‘round us shine, Alleluia, alleluia

Chorus We hymn the Father, we hymn the Son We hymn the Spirit, wholly Divine No one more worthy of songs to be sung To the Giver of Life, all glory is Thine

Verse 3 Hail Gladdening Light, such joyous Light O Brilliant Star, forever shine, Alleluia, alleluia

It was a great moment for us this weekend, as we we joined in singing this ancient hymn and truth about the nature of our God.

"Holy Holy Holy" was a late addition/change to the set for this week, as David and I discussed late Thursday about wrapping the message. Some scholars maintain that the Scriptural phrase, "Holy Holy Holy" is referring to each person of the Trinity, and we thought it might be fitting (even without mentioning that) to do a song that contained both that phrase and explicit references to the "Blessed Trinity." It was also another way to connect both old and new in our worship time.

In reference to my learning experience last week (see here), we did "How Great Is Our God" all the way down in the key of G (A bit lower than the recording in C#...). It was rather low, but it fit well in the flow of the rest of the worship set, and the people sang it well. I think the key of A would have been fine, but it further emphasized to me the value of putting things in singable keys - which is something I have been working on and learning for the last 4 years. If you are leading somewhere, and it seems that people are not singing with you (I believe the participation of our congregations ought to be part of the goal), try dropping the key a step or so and see what happens. Try to eliminate any excuse people can give for not joining in the song with the church, especially for the guys.

In all, it was a great weekend of worshiping together. I love our team here at Fellowship, and I am so blessed to serve with them. Their hearts and their talent is what makes our weekends special together. I'm excited about where things are heading, and the things we're learning together as we help to lead God's people in worshiping their King!

I hope you had a great weekend of worship wherever you were!

In the Son,

Bill

(Sunday Set Lists)

Set List, 02/05 - 02/06/11 Fellowship Bible Church

(Photos taken by Shelly Zipperle)

Here's our set from this week:

Pre-Service: "Say Say" [Christy Nockels, Chris Tomlin, Kristian Stanfill] - C Call to Worship: Isaiah 40:25-31 "Everlasting God" [Brenton Brown, Ken Riley] - Bb Welcome/Prayer/Announcements/Offering Greeting Time "God of Wonders" [Marc Byrd, Steve Hindalong] - Ab "Indescribable" [Laura Story] - Ab Communion: "Lamb of God" [original] - Ab Message: "I Believe God Reveals" [Pastor Joe Hishmeh] "All Creatures of Our God and King" [St. Francis of Assisi, William Henry Draper, David Crowder, and Brent Milligan] - D

My third week here in Topeka was a great weekend of worship, with an interesting twist: I was more hoarse than I have ever been in my life, aside from losing my voice completely. Strangely, I was able to control my pitch and volume without any trouble, but it sounded really rough on "Say Say." For the rest of the set, it sounded a little gritty, but I think it was fine. It was a lot of work to control it, to be sure.

I typically have a higher tenor voice, but I have been trying to key things lower for the people in the congregation--specifically the men in our congregation. This week made me think seriously about that. I had already keyed the songs lower (aside from "Say Say") on purpose, but if I hadn't, I don't think I would have been able to sing them at all. I came to a conclusion: if I cannot sing a song when I'm sick, it's too high for most men to sing. I think that's probably a fair assessment. Most guys have as much range as my hoarse voice, which basically has the range of an untrained voice. It will be extremely helpful to have that as a guide for my decisions on song keys and ranges going forward.

"God of Wonders" and "Indescribable" were keyed lower than I have ever had them before, and I thought it was very effective. It seemed like the people were singing more easily with the change (especially on "Indescribable," which is usually through the roof in Bb or B). I think they could have come down even to G without negative effect. I was even more grateful that I had done that when my cold began looming over the weekend.

Also, this was the first week I have shared an original song with Fellowship, in "Lamb of God." We used it during communion, as the deacons and elders were passing out the elements. For me, it was an especially sweet time of thinking on the cross and what our Messiah did for us to redeem us and rescue us. Pastors David Hinkle and Brian Tryhus did a great job setting up the time of communion, too, which made it that much more meaningful.

Pastor Joe shared about God's revelation of Himself through creation, through the Word of God, and through Christ. Because of this, we responded to the message with "All Creatures of Our God and King" as arranged by David Crowder on his Illuminate album. I love this arrangement of this hymn, and it was really fitting for the message today. The guitar part at the intro was a little tricky (Crowder capos up to the 7th fret and place it with G shapes and tons of embellishment), but by the fourth service, I think I got it mostly right. I love some of the stuff that Crowder does on acoustic. It spices things up without going over the top.

All in all, it was a great weekend of worship together. We unveiled a pretty dramatic stage design for the I Believe series, which turned out great. Kip Kraisinger and Wyatt Johnston were the brains behind that one. The images in this blog are from the new set. We set out to link our series on essential doctrines of the Christian faith to the concept of "Legacy," which is where the Tron theme comes in. All it took was some PVC pipe and some lighting, along with aircraft cable and fishing line to rig the pipe boxes. I'm pretty excited about how it turned out. In fact, I'm pretty excited about everything going on here at Fellowship right now. God is so good!

I hope you had a great week of worship wherever you were!

In the Son,

Bill

Sunday Set Lists

Set List, Sunday 10/17/10 Church at the Mall

Here's our set from yesterday: "Faithful One" [original] "Say, Say" [Kristian Stanfill, Christy Nockels, Chris Tomlin] "Our God" [Jonas Myrin, Matt Redman, Chris Tomlin, et al] "Hosanna" [Brooke Fraser, arr. by Starfield] "Cannons" [Phil Wickham] Message - "It's Your Serve--Be Missional" [Pastor Jay] INV - "Mighty to Save" [Reuben Morgan, Ben Fielding]

This week, the focus of the morning was "Be Missional," so I took the angle of God's glory and fame, and our call to spread the news of His salvation and glory to the world. We often think of worship as merely something that happens within the church for the benefit of the church. However, when we worship the Lord like He deserves to be worshiped--in spirit and in truth--we are declaring the truth, which has transformational power. This affects not only the church, but also anyone who witnesses it. Moreover, if we live our lives for the purpose of worshiping our King, we are essentially telling others the truth of His greatness. Worship then results in us being missional, as we seek to exalt Jesus in everything we do. We will tell other people about Him, and love people like Him. We will seek opportunities to get more people involved in worshiping Him by placing their trust in Him, because He deserves the worship of every single being on this earth. In short, true worship will result in the mission of the church being fulfilled. As Jesus said, "‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matthew 22:37-40).

I hope you had a great day of worship wherever you were.

In the Son,

Bill

The Worship Community | Sunday Set Lists

Set List, Sunday 09/26/10 Church at the Mall

Here's our set from this week: "All Because of Jesus" [Steve Fee] "Say, Say" [Kristian Stanfill, Christy Nockels, Chris Tomlin, et al] Welcome, recognition, announcements "I Want to Love You" [Todd Fields] "True Love" [Phil Wickham] Message - "It's Your Serve: Tell Your Story" - Pastor Jay Dennis INV - "I Will Go" [Tim Neufeld, Jon Neufeld] Parent/Child dedication Business Meeting

This morning was a good morning - busy, but good. We had lots of elements to this Sunday, as you can see above. It is always a frustration of mine when we have too much to do to take time to worship. I guess it is the nature of the beast, because Sunday morning is the only time the church is all gathered together in one place, and is considered the best option for getting information to everyone in the congregation. I suppose this is probably the case in many places. I don't think anyone believes it is ideal, but it is what it is. We are working towards getting people to get all their information through the many other available means, and hopefully we'll get there sometime soon. Until then, we will have days where there are tons of people to mention and announcements to be made, and we'll make it work as well as we can.

One of the highlights for me today was the Parent and Child Dedication. This is the first time we were able to do this at the 9:30 AM service, where many of our young families attend. This is time well-spent in my opinion. Seeing the young parents dedicating their lives and their children to God with the church family is a beautiful thing. There are so many amazing stories in those families. One couple has been trying to have children or adopt for several years, and they got a surprise call a month or so ago to go to the hospital and pick up their child. It was an amazing moment for that family, and it was beautiful to see them on the platform for the dedication. I, as well as many people in our congregation, are thrilled for them.

I felt like things were a little disconnected, as we did one song we hadn't done in a long time ("I Want to Love You") and one that is more a "listening" type of a song ("True Love"). I probably should have had the congregation sit during that last one. It's a fantastic song with an amazing message, anyway. If you haven't heard it yet, check it out! It fit really well with Pastor Jay's message about sharing one's story to share the gospel, which was primarily about knowing and sharing one's personal testimony. It is such a useful thing to have prepared, because people will listen to your own story more than they will listen to preaching.

I hope you had a great day of worship wherever you were. Please let me know if you have any questions.

As always, check out Sunday Set Lists over at www.theworshipcommunity.com.

In the Son,

Bill

Set List, Sunday 09/12/10 Church at the Mall

Sorry I didn't do a recap sooner. It's been an insane week. Quickly, here's our set from last Sunday: "Say Say" [Kristian Stanfill, Christy Nockels, Chris Tomlin] "Happy Day" [Tim Hughes, Ben Cantelon] "Blessed Be Your Name" [Matt and Beth Redman] "Let Me Sing" [Todd Fields] "You Never Let Go" [Matt and Beth Redman] INV - "Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)" [Louie Giglio, Chris Tomlin, John Newton, Edwin O. Excell, John P. Rees] OFF - "Our God" [Jonas Myrin, Matt Redman, Chris Tomlin, et al]

This past Sunday was another great week of worship together. God is moving, and it's exciting to be a part of it all. This week, we're in the middle of our church's first original evangelistic production, Thanatos, and God is moving in that as well. People are coming to Jesus and coming back to Jesus in droves. I believe this is a hint of revival, the likes of which I have not have the privilege of witnessing before.

Praise God for His power and working, and His choosing to use broken vessels for His amazing purposes.

I hope you had a great day of worship wherever you were this week.

As always, check out Sunday Set Lists at www.theworshipcommunity.com.

In the Son, Bill

Set List, Sunday 08/01/10 Church at the Mall

(Listening to Jon Foreman right now) Here's our set from yesterday:

"Happy Day" [Tim Hughes] "Say Say" [Kristian Stanfill, Chris Tomlin, Christy Nockels] "Our God" [Matt Redman, Jonas Myrin, Chris Tomlin] "Beautiful Jesus" [Kristian Stanfill] "Mighty to Save" [Ben Fielding, Reuben Morgan] "Psalm 19 (May the Words of My Mouth)" [Terry Butler] "Lord of All" [Kristian Stanfill]

We had a great day of worship yesterday. Pastor Jay taught about meditating on the Scriptures, and gave a lot of practical wisdom and instruction about it. It was very helpful, and I believe it will be transformational in the church's approach to studying and dwelling on the Scriptures. I was challenged by his message, and will be seeking to implant more Scripture into my heart and my mind, so that it will penetrate every of my life.

I tried to focus the music on the phrase, "Is anything to difficult for the Lord?" Hence the themes of God's power and sovereignty throughout the songs. Some were even inadvertent, but God was guiding the process and really brought it all together. "Our God" is a fantastic song that focuses God's people on His strength and turns the corner to help us see how that same strength is for us when we are in Him. It's a beautiful thing.

I hope you had a great day of worship wherever you were this week. God bless you!

Bill

p.s. as always, make sure to check out Sunday Set Lists at www.theworshipcommunity.com to see what other leaders and worshipers experienced this week.

Set List, Sunday 07/25/10 Church at the Mall

Currently listening to The Almost, Southern Weather Here's our set from yesterday:

"God is Alive" [Steve Fee] "Say Say" [Kristian Stanfill, Chris Tomlin, and Christy Nockels] "Our God" [Matt Redman, Jonas Myrin, Chris Tomlin, and Jesse Reeves] "Jesus Messiah" [Daniel Carson, Chris Tomlin, Ed Cash, and Jesse Reeves] INV: "Center" [Charlie Hall] OFF: "Chosen Generation" [Chris Tomlin, Louie Giglio, Daniel Carson, and Jesse Reeves]

Yesterday was our day to celebrate what happened with our high school students at Student Life camp in Daytona Beach two weeks ago. Because of that, we introduced several of the "great" songs from the week's worship. "Say Say," "Our God," "Jesus Messiah," and "Chosen Generation" were all songs that the students learned while at camp, and God really used them to speak to the students and change their lives. "Our God" and "Jesus Messiah" were songs I had planned on introducing already, but this Sunday gave me the opportunity to do it all at once. I was surprised at how well the people engaged with the songs in singing out to the Lord. I suppose those two have been on the radio enough that people have heard them and know them already. It was really exciting to remember my shared experience with the students at camp as we were singing these new songs. God moved in a major way in all of our lives, and these songs serve as reminders of that event in each of our lives. It's a beautiful thing. "Our God" is a powerful declaration of the greatness of God, and "Jesus Messiah" comes from my favorite verse in Scripture, 2 Cor. 5:21. Both of them make solid and powerful doctrinal statements about the Lord and what He has done. The bridge of "Our God" ("And if our God is for us/ Then who could ever stop us?/ And if our God is with us/ Then what could stand against?") is so strong when the church sings it together. It feels like the walls might fall down from the power of that statement. I love it.

"Say Say" was a song that I had heard on the new Passion CD, but I was not previously impressed with it. However, after experiencing it live, I was sold on it. I think I just struggled with the way "Say, Say" was repeated throughout the song. What changed my mind was the rest of the lyric, which I hadn't really taken the time to read: "Say, say, say You believe it/ Sing for the whole world to hear it/ We know and we declare it/ Jesus is King/ Say, say, say You believe it/ Sing loud, sing like You mean it/ We know and we declare it/ Jesus is King." Solid and strong. This is another song that takes on new life when the church sings it together. We'll continue to teach this one over the next few weeks.

"Chosen Generation" is another great new song from the Awakening album. The chorus sings, "We are a chosen generation/ Rise up holy nation/ God we live for You/ You have called us out of darkness/ Into light so glorious/ God we live for You." One of the highlight moments of camp was when Louie Giglio called all the student leaders on the stage and had them watch their students sing this song. I stayed with our group and turned to watch them sing up close. It was an awesome sight. God is raising up our young people to change this world. Let us continue to hold them up in prayer and help to train them up as mighty disciples for our Lord.

I hope you had a great day of worship wherever you were.

God is working!

Bill

p.s. check out www.theworshipcommunity.com's Sunday Set Lists to see what other leaders are doing around the world!