This is just astounding.
There must be so many other instances, which we have not yet discovered, where music has the unique power to unlock and overcome problems in our physical bodies, minds and emotions. Thank You for the music!
This is just astounding.
WordPress.com users published more than 595 million posts in 2016. That’s slightly more than I managed to publish, but I do love the way much of my older content continues to be useful and encouraging to people all over the globe. Here are my top 5 most viewed posts this year. If you have only just followed me, you might like to check out why they are still popular.
5. How to Encourage your music team even when you’re not the leader
How great would it be if every single player and singer and sound technician took up the opportunity to positively influence the way their team functions. Consider the following list, 10 ways team players can be more encouraging members of their music team. . .
4. All of Creation Sing with me now, the veil is torn
Without being zapped or burnt to a crisp we sinful humans can now see the “glory of God in the face of Christ” (2 Cor 4:6). Mercy Me’s song All of Creation gets quite a mention as well.
3. The Conundrum of Keys, Capos and Congregational Singing
This post contains four rules of thumb that I find work well when selecting singable and playable keys for church singing.
2. The Cross Has Made You Flawless
This post generated quite a lot of discussion – around the song Flawless. See what you think. In Christ we stand before our heavenly Father as perfect, flawless people. We are wrapped up in Christ’s righteousness.
1. Never Alone
This most viewed post shares a congregational song, Never Alone. It has a simple melody (great for church singing) and the lyrics bring such comfort. Christ is with us! We are not alone . . . no matter how alone we may feel.
“And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
(NLT Matthew 28:20)
Thanks for reading in 2016! Merry Christmas!
Worship Together recently posted a series of Advent and Christmas songs as set lists to mix and match. They include traditional carols as well as recent praise and worship songs. You can watch a New Song Cafe video and play along with the charts! I hope you find something useful for your service planning. Blessings!
Set List #1
Set List #2
Set List #3
Set List #4
Image from https://au.pinterest.com/explore/sheet-music-crafts/
This is a short demonstration of the power and music of words. If you are a blog writer you should enjoy this!
This sentence has five words. Here are five more words. Five-word sentences are fine. But several together become monotonous. Listen to what is happening. The writing is getting boring. The sound of it drones. It’s like a stuck record. The ear demands some variety. Now listen. I vary the sentence length, and I create music. Music. The writing sings. It has a pleasant rhythm, a lilt, a harmony. I use short sentences. And I use sentences of medium length. And sometimes, when I am certain the reader is rested, I will engage him with a sentence of considerable length, a sentence that burns with energy and builds with all the impetus of a crescendo, the roll of the drums, the crash of the cymbals–sounds that say listen to this, it is important.
Gary Provost, quoted in Roy Peter Clark’s (terrific) Writing Tools
Thanks to Tim Challies for a recent post on his blog entitled “Songs we sing that you probably don’t”. His aim was to share some lesser known songs that have greatly blessed his church. This got me thinking, since most followers of SevenNotes are not from Australia (and I am) there are probably many songs that have become popular here that you are missing out on! What follows is my attempt to cover the best offerings for congregational singing which we have enjoyed from Australian songwriters in the last decade or so. Most of the lead sheets will be available through Song Select (CCLI) and part or full recordings of the songs are on the net. In fact, I have compiled a playlist on Spotify called Church Songs Australia where you can find them all! I will start with most recent and work backwards (and if I have already shared something on one of them, I’ll send you to that post to explore). Clicking on song titles below will take you to an mp3 and sheet music (most of the time). (NOTE: I’ve just discovered EMU’s homepage is down at the moment so some of the links may not work! Sorry – should be fixed soon.)
MY SAVIOUR’S CROSS (Rob Smith 2013)
GRACE HAS NOW APPEARED (Rob Smith 2012)
THIS LIFE I LIVE (Michael Morrow)
UNDIVIDED (Rob Smith)
STRONGER (Reuben Morgan)
HOLDING ON TO ME (Garage Hymnal)
NEVER ALONE (Phillip Percival and Simone Richardson)
HALLELUJAH TO THE KING OF KINGS (Marl Peterson)
SEE HIM COMING (Mark Peterson)
WE ARE HIS PEOPLE (Phillip Percival)
HIGHEST PLACE (Mark Peterson)
MAY THE MIND OF CHRIST MY SAVIOUR (Words: Katie Barclay Wilkinson 1859-1928. Music: © 1997 Mark Peterson)
I’d like to thank John Mark Miller at The Artistic Christian for nominating me for the Most Influential Blogger Award!
Here are the guidelines for acceptance – really very straightforward.
To accept this award, the awardees must do the following:
1. Display the Award on your Blog.
2. Announce your win with a blog post and thank the Blogger who awarded you.
3. Present 10 deserving Bloggers with the Award.
4. Link your awardees in the post and let them know of their being awarded with a comment (or a pingback).
5. Include an embedded video of your current favorite song (YouTube has almost everything, just copy and paste the link into your WordPress editor). If a video is not possible you can embed a SoundCloud track.
At the moment I’m really enjoy listening to the album WORTH IT ALL by Meredith Andrews. This song, PIECES, is a goodie!
It’s my privilege to introduce you to some talented bloggers who I believe are Most Influential Bloggers. I hope you enjoy their writing as much as I do:
1. Nick at MOUTHFUL OF GOSPEL http://nickmorrowmusic.com/
2. Bryan at BRYAN PATTERSON’S FAITHWORKS http://bryanpattersonfaithworks.wordpress.com/
3. Mel at IN MY FATHER’S HOUSE http://melwild.wordpress.com/
4. Rob at MERE INKLING http://mereinkling.wordpress.com/
5. Nathan at NATHAN MILLICAN’S BLOG http://nathanmillican.com/
6. Deidre at CRUSTY BREAD http://crustybreadblog.com/
7. Anna at A JOURNEY OF FAITH http://daughterbydesign.wordpress.com/
8. Lori at A DISPLAY OF HIS SPLENDOR http://adisplayofsplendor.com/
9. Justin at EMBRACING GOD’S GRACE http://jmeyerksu.wordpress.com/
10. Belinda at GRACE AND TRUTH http://graceandtruth.me/about/
“Many artists these days are finding brilliant ways to create with ice. In the past, we’ve seen incredibly complex maze-like castles, ice hotels, and colorful ice forts. Yet in that long list of creations, we have yet to see musical instruments—until now. Located in Luleå, Sweden, Ice Music is a chilly new art form where musicians dress warmly in winter coats and hats and play instruments carved out of ice.
Paying great attention to the delicate details of each piece, Ice Music founder and ice artist Tim Linhart builds, by hand, instruments including violin, viola, cello, contrabass, banjo, mandolin, guitar, drum kit and xylophone. Due to the fragile nature of the sculpted objects, some of the instruments are secured to the ceiling with rope while the musicians play. This prevents any accidental damage if the instrument slips out of a musician’s hand during a performance.
The concerts take place in a wintery igloo with glowing lights cast all around. Within the enclosed, rounded space, the elegant music consumes the audience in an explosion of sound. The igloo maintains a constant temperature of 23ºF so it is recommended that any attendees wear at least three layers of clothing plus gloves and a hat. The beautiful sounds and the enchanting light show make up for the chilly temperatures, creating a wonderful atmosphere that celebrates what the website describes as the “winter spirit of Swedish Lapland.” Click on the link below to LISTEN to the music!
A deft, unique exploration of how music makes us who we are, throughout our lives.
This looks like an interesting book for anyone interested in music and the power it wields in the human experience. I don’t yet have a copy, but I will certainly be seeking it out. Here is a little taste of the subject matter (taken from Good Reads):
‘You are the music / While the music lasts’
T.S. Eliot, The Four Quartets
“Do babies remember music from the womb? Can classical music increase your child’s IQ? Is music good for productivity? Can it aid recovery from illness and injury? And what is going on in your brain when Ultravox’s ‘Vienna’, Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht or Dizzee Rascal’s ‘Bonkers’ transports you back to teenage years?
In a brilliant new work that will delight music lovers of every persuasion, music psychologist Victoria Williamson examines our relationship with music across the whole of a lifetime.
Along the way she reveals the amazing ways in which music can physically reshape our brains, explores how ‘smart music listening’ can improve cognitive performance, and considers the perennial puzzle of what causes ‘earworms’.
Requiring no specialist musical or scientific knowledge, this upbeat, eye-opening book reveals as never before the extent of the universal language of music that lives deep inside us all.”
While the Southern Hemisphere swelters in humidity and great overdoses of sunshine, our friends in the North get to enjoy a spectacular reminder of our Creator’s intricate designs. These snowflakes are magnificent – though at times I suppose they can cause chaos and lots of work. Whether you are neck deep in snow, or not, I’m sure you’ll enjoy these macro snowflake images!
“As fascinating as macro photography is, most of us think we can’t do it because it requires specialized equipment. Russian photographer Alexey Kljatov, however, is an inspiration to aspiring amateur photographers everywhere – he created a home-made rig capable of capturing stunning close-up pictures of snowflakes out of old camera parts, boards, screws and tape. His pictures give us an enchanting close-up view of snowflakes that we could never hope for without specialized equipment.
The wonderful thing about snowflakes is that no two are alike. Their extraordinary diversity diversity stems from the many small changes in temperature and humidity that they experience while freezing on their way down to the ground. Their six-sided symmetry occurs because the crystalline structure of ice is also hexagonal. All of these many factors come together to create beautiful shapes that are almost always unique.
Kljatov’s rig creates the sort of photos that might otherwise require lenses or other equipment worth hundreds or thousands of dollars. And the pictures he creates with this rig look absolutely amazing. For more information about how he did it, check out his blog post.
I love this Christmas project which Julie Fisk at “She Loves Magazine” has come up with. It is a brilliant way of sharing the GRACE of God with others and focusing on the true GIFT of Christmas (Christ!) Here is an excerpt of the post, but click on the link at the end for the whole story:
“It’s hard to notice the clanging of commercialism when you are searching high and low for the next person to help.”
Every December I struggle with how to refocus my family’s attention on Christ, on giving, and on thinking of something or someone other than ourselves, or on what Santa might bring, or the presents on our list.
It’s a battle against stores, commercials and our culture as we enter a crazy, too-early, over-hyped holiday season, intent on talking about spending money and buying gifts and going to parties. . . .
And so, last year, as two friends and I lamented over yet another over-commercialized Christmas and our struggles to teach our children something different, we decided to fight back against the holiday insanity and join forces for our first Advent Acts of Kindness (AAK).
Our inspiration was found in Mark 12:28-31:
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
We celebrated Advent (24 days, plus our Christmas Finale) with a daily kind act—most of which included our children’s direct participation—but this could easily be scaled back to a weekly kind act or any number that fits your life and your schedule.
We rotated between community acts (quarters in the laundry mat, cookies for the police department), national acts (Red Cross Mail for Heroes, Toys for Tots), and international acts of kindness (World Vision, International Justice Mission, Heifer International).
As our children helped us deliver gifts, write cards and make projects, we found ourselves talking about Christ, about sacrifice, and about the true meaning of Christmas in our families and amongst ourselves.
And, truthfully, our eyes became less focused on the commercialism of Christmas.
My girlfriends and I found ourselves walking through the days with our eyes and ears and hearts open wide—searching for a need to meet. Searching for our next kind act. It’s hard to notice the clanging of commercialism when you are searching high and low for the next person to help.
What I realized during this inaugural Advent Acts of Kindness, as I watched my daughter’s head bent low over her card written to a child stricken with cancer, was that this time redefining Christmas was just as important for my soul as it was for my children. Culture seeps into me when I’m not looking, not paying attention, distracted by a million other things.
My family will be celebrating our Second Annual Advent Acts of Kindness this Christmas season, and we invite you to join us.
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~ declaring His kingdom ~ for His glory
Encouraging pastor's and church leaders in average American churches in their mission for Jesus Christ.
If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: The old has gone, the new has come!
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