Episode 17 with writers and speakers Daniel Emery Price and Pastor Erick Sorensen

In episode 17 I sit down with Daniel Emery Price who is a writer, podcaster, speaker, and the Director of Christ Hold Fast and his frequent collaborator, author, podcaster, and speaker Pastor Erick Sorensen. We discuss their collaborative process, their most recent book Scandalous Stories: A Sort of Commentary on Parables and their forthcoming book, Miracles: A Sort of Commentary on Miracles.

To explore more of Dan and Erick’s work, you can listen to their podcast, 30 Minutes in the New Testament, visit them on the Christ Hold Fast facebook page or follow them on twitter @pastorerick and @danemeryprice.


THE GUEST SUGGESTS:

Books
The Genius of Luther’s Theology: A Wittenberg Way of Thinking for the Contemporary Church
Inexpressible: Hesed and the Mystery of God’s Loving Kindness

Music
Born to Quit by the Smoking Popes

Films
Silence
Calvary

Televison
Better Call Saul

Church Year | Pentecost

Pente-what?

For many, Pentecost calls to mind images of fire, a recounting of the disciples of Christ speaking in tongues, and A LOT of talk of the not often mentioned member of the Holy Trinity, the Holy Spirit. Some of you may be recalling pew after pew of church grandmas dressed head to toe in their finest red clothes .

The day of Pentecost as we see it in Acts 2 involves all of those things (except maybe the red sweaters): fire, speaking in tongues, the Holy Spirit, and about 3,000 people being saved through baptism after hearing the Word of God in their own native tongue. Can you imagine?  It must have been an amazing and terrifying sight! As the passage says, tongues of fire came and rested on those gathered and they were able to speak in all sorts of languages. Languages that were understood by those gathered. Languages that apparently the disciples should not have been able to speak, but they did. And, in looking closely at this passage, it is not so much what the people  do as it is what the Spirit does through them. Let that sink in for a minute.

In my tradition, we don’t talk a whole lot about the Holy Spirit on a regular basis. We save it for Pentecost and even then we kind of distract ourselves by concerning ourselves with how much red we are all wearing. For many, the Holy Spirit’s work is more difficult to understand, and we don’t always like to grapple with difficult things, but Pentecost brings us the opportunity to put the work of the Holy Spirit right out front. Pentecost reminds us of not only what happened on that day described in Acts 2 but what is happening every day: the Spirit of God working in and through God’s people.

So let’s celebrate! Let’s celebrate the power of the Holy Spirit to work through some nobodies in Jerusalem and bring about 3,000 people to be saved through baptism.  Let’s celebrate that in baptism God pours out His grace and gives His Spirit to nobodies like you and me. And now, as forgiven members of the body of Christ, the Spirit works through us everyday to love and serve our neighbor to the glory of God.

Happy Pentecost. Red sweater optional.

A Prayer for Pentecost

Heavenly Father, We thank you that through baptism You poured Your Spirit on us.

We pray that Your Spirit would daily point us to the forgiveness that we have through Jesus’ death and resurrection. In this forgiveness cause us to recognize the freedom that we have. May Your Spirit compel us to share this good news with our neighbor.

We pray that Your Spirit would humble us to love those who do not think like us, speak like us, look like us, or live like us. Move us to acts of service of not only those we love, but also our enemies and those who do not wish us well, or of whom we do not approve.  

We pray that those we encounter would be confused by our love and yearn to know why we love, and through that yearning  they would see that it is because of the gift of forgiveness we have been given through Christ on the cross.

When we judge, when we ignore, when we neglect, we choose sin.  In the moments we choose sin and the moments we do not even realize we are choosing sin, we ask that Your Spirit would point us right back to the hope we have in Christ through those very same redeeming waters of baptism.

Strengthen and preserve us in faith by Your Spirit until our final day.
It is in Jesus’s name, by the power of the Holy Spirit that we pray. Amen.

photo by Christian Chen

Ignite

Ignite

Ignite chart image_0001.png

Lord you call us to be people of peace 
To reconcile and to redeem 
Lord we're willing, but we are weak 
Give us strength to serve all we meet 

To the weak and the poor made known 
May your love through us be shown 

Spirit of God ignite our hearts 
To burn bright for yours 
Let us be the light to all 
All the dark 

Lord you call us to be people of love 
Living sacrifice to your glory oh Lord 
Transform us by the blood of your Son 
Bringing justice and mercy 
Walking with you God 

To the weak and the poor made known 
May your love through us be shown 

Spirit of God ignite our hearts 
To burn bright for yours 
Let us be the light to all 
All the dark 

Ignite in us pure holiness 
Cleanse us from all selfishness 
Lead us in paths of righteousness 
To the work You prepared in advance for us 

Spirit of God ignite our hearts 
To burn bright for yours 
Let us be the light to all 
All the dark 

Music and Lyrics by Blake Flattley

CCLI# 7087805

Episode 16 with Former Worship Leader and Podcast Host Debi Winrich

In episode 16 I sit down with former worship leader and podcast host Debi Winrich. We discuss her transition from worship leader at a non denominational church into a liturgical Lutheran church, her podcast the Soul of Christianity, and the concept of vocation.

To learn more about Debi’s podcast, The Soul of Christianity, you can follow along on twitter or instagram.


MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Reforming Worship from White Horse Inn
1517. Podcast Network

THE GUEST SUGGESTS:
Virgil Wander by Leif Enger

Music in this episode is composed by Kelly Winrich for the Soul of Christianity podcast.

Episode 15 with Author and Speaker David Zahl

In Episode 15 I sit down with author and speaker, David Zahl. We discuss his new book Seculosity: How Career, Parenting, Technology, Food, Politics, And Romance Became Our New Religion And What To Do About It, his writing process, and his ministry with Mockingbird.

To learn more about David and the work he is involved with you can follow Mockingbird on twitter, facebook, or instagram, or join him on the Seculosity Tour.

THE GUEST SUGGESTS
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
”Triptych” by Roxy Music

ALSO REFERENCED
Law & Gospel: A Theology for Sinners (and Saints)
Workism is Making Americans Miserable” by Derek Thompson

Music in this episode is by The Orange Effect.

Episode 14 with Theologian, Author and Speaker Chad Bird

In Episode 14 I sit down with theologian, author, and speaker Chad Bird. We discuss the writing process, routines that have helped him foster his writing skills, the importance of creating honest art, and his new book Upside-Down Spirituality: The Nine Essential Failures of a Faithful Life.

To learn more about Chad and his work you can visit him at ChadBird.com, follow him on twitter, or explore some of his work on the Old Testament through the podcast 40 Minutes in the Old Testament and The Old Testament Unveiled videos.


THE GUEST SUGGESTS

The Temple and the Church’s Mission: A Biblical Theology of the Dwelling Place of God by G.K. Beale

photo by Doug Klembara

Episode 13 with Storymakers' founder Mel Smith & art director Karen Weber

In episode 13 I sit down with two members of the Storymakers team: Mel Smith, creative director and founder and Karen Weber, art director and designer. We discuss, the journey to the creation of Storymakers, the design process and art that inspires. If you’d like to learn more about Storymakers or explore one of the Sparks, visit them at StorymakersNYC.com and follow them on Instagram.

Storytellers that have inspired:
Roald Dahl
Salvador Dali

The Guest Suggests:
Frida Kahlo exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum
Take a class, try something new, explore the old and new, Go Play!

Also mentioned during this podcast:
Little Joy NYC
Mockingbird

Music in this episode is from Matt Veligdan, composed for Creative Arts Camp.

Liturgy of Rest

Last month we had the opportunity to lead church leaders from all over the United States in A Liturgy of Rest. We’ve led this in a few different cities and it has taken on a few different forms depending on the context. Several people have asked us if they could use that liturgy in their local context, so we decided to go ahead and post the service order from that event here. Use it in whole, use pieces of it, or change and modify it for your context.

WELCOME
Today, this service may have elements of familiar or perhaps be entirely new to you. As you are here, I encourage you to participate as you are comfortable. Allow God to meet you where you are. If you need to sit and hear the liturgy spoken and sung over you, you are welcome to do that. If you would like to stand and sing, you may do that. At times I may ask you to stand, if you are unable to stand or would rather remain seated, that is more than ok.

You have no obligation today. Often we are tempted to put on our pastor/church leader/ perfect parishoner face. Today, I encourage you to come as you are, as an imperfect yet fully loved and forgiven child of God in who’s name our beginning is made...

INVOCATION
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen

“HOLY, HOLY, HOLY”
by Reginald Heber, John B. Dykes, Blake Flattley, and Alex Navarro

READING | Zephaniah 3:17
(read aloud together)

“SING”
by Blake Flattley

READING | Psalm 23:1-3

“THERE WILL BE REST”
by Blake Flattley & Brian T. Murphy

READING | Psalm 46:8-11
(read responsively)

L: Come, behold the works of the Lord,
C: how he has brought desolations on the earth.

L: He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
C: he breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the chariots with fire.

L: “Be still, and know that I am God.
C: I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”

L: The Lord of hosts is with us;
C: the God of Jacob is our fortress.

“THIS IS MY FATHER’S WORLD”
by Maltbie D. Babcock

CONFESSION
Lord, we confess.

We confess that we have busied our lives with so much clutter that we forget to see the vast blessings you have given to us. Blessings of family and friends, good conversation, a morning coffee, a cool breeze.

We confess that we neglect our relationship with You.
Too often we make plans for You and Your Church neglecting to first stop and listen to You.

We confess that we are sinners in need of a grace that only You can provide, forgive us Lord.

SILENCE

READING | Matthew 11:28-29
(Read by leader)

SILENCE

ABSOLUTION
We are invited, not of what we have done with the labor of our hands, with our ideas, our inventions or even own creativity to simply receive what Christ has offered us. He proclaims to us that we are forgiven. There is nothing that we could do that would prevent us from enjoying the assurance of the rest found in Him. Know that you are forgiven, in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

PRAYER
We're going to move into a time of prayer. The band will sing and we invite you to offer up and prayers silently as you sit in your seat. Hand them over to God. Let Jesus take them from you. After a while of singing we will come back together for corporate prayer as we close our time together.

“MY SONG IS LOVE UNKNOWN”
by Samuel Crossman, John Ireland, and Blake Flattley

“BE THOU MY VISION”
by Eleanor Henrietta Hull and Mary Elizabeth Byrne

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
by Blake Flattley
After each petition, the leader will say “Lord, hear our cry”, and we will join together singing “Lord, have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord, have mercy on us.”

LORD’S PRAYER

DOXOLOGY
by Thomas Ken

PRAYER “SLEEP”
(adapted from The Valley of Vision)
Blessed Creator, You have promised those You love rest;
Give us restoring rest needed for life’s toil;
Let your Spirit make our time of rest
a blessed temple of Christ’s holy presence.

May my frequent lying down make me familiar with death,
the bed I approach remind me of the grave,
the eyes I close picture to me their final closing.
Keep me always ready, waiting for admittance to your presence.

Weaken my attachment to earthly things.
May I hold life loosely in my hand,
knowing that I receive it on condition of its surrender;

As pain and suffering indicate temporal health,
may I not shrink from a death
that introduces me to the freshness of eternal youth.

Even as we close our eyes to sleep,
we do so in full assurance of one day awakening with you.
All glory for this precious hope, for the gospel of grace,
for your unspeakable gift of Jesus, for the fellowship of the Trinity.

Do not withhold your mercies from us this day;
Your hand never wearies, your power needs no repose, your eyes never sleep.

Help me when I helpless lie,
when my conscience accuses me of sin,
when my mind is harassed by apprehensive thoughts,
when I am kept awake with my anxieties.

Show yourself to me as the God of all grace, love and power;
You have healing for every wound, a solace for all anguish,
a remedy for every pain, a peace for all uneasiness.
Permit me to commit myself to thee awake or asleep. Amen.

BLESSING
May the God of all rest, both now and not yet, bless you and keep you. May He make His face shine upon you and be gracious unto you. May He look upon you with favor and give to you, His peace.

If you’d like our team to bring A Liturgy of Rest to your community, email us for details contact@CommunionArts.org.

Episode 12 with photographer, gallery director, art educator, and curator Sherri Littlefield

In episode 12 I sit down with gallery director, photographer, art educator and curator Sherri Littlefield. We discuss the process of curation and how that might be applied to the preparation of a worship service. If you’d like to learn more about Sherri and her work, you can visit SherriLittlefield.com. You can also see the work from Treat Gallery’s, Treat American Project at two separate exhibitions in New York City featuring work from Brenton Little, Bubblegum & Whiskey, and 48 other fantastic artists.

January 9th - January 13th
Foley Gallery, 59 Orchard Street NYC
opening reception January 9th at 6pm.

February 8th - February 17th
OSNY Project Space, 417 W. 57th Street NYC
opening reception February 8th at 7pm.

The Guest Suggests:
The Office
WWE
The Jealous Curator Podcast
Art galleries: ClampArt & The Border
American Society of Media Photographers

Episode 11 with singer, songwriter and pastor David Gungor

In episode 11 I sit down with singer, songwriter and pastor David Gungor. We discuss liturgy, his band the Brilliance and how their music has changed over the course of their career. If you want to learn more about David and the Brilliance you can find them at thebrilliancemusic.com, buy the new record here, and learn more about the art they are creating on Patreon.com.

The Guest Suggests:
Charity: Water
Thirst: A Story of Redemption, Compassion, and a Mission to Bring Clean Water to the World


Watch the video they made for World Relief HERE.

Silent Night

Silent Night

Silent night, holy night!
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin mother and child.
Holy Infant, so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Silent night, holy night!
Shepherds quake at the sight;
Glories stream from heaven afar,
Heavenly hosts sing, Alleluia!
Christ, the Savior, is born!
Christ, the Savior, is born!

Silent night, holy night!
Son of God, love’s pure light
Radiant beams from thy holy face
With the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord at thy birth,
Jesus, Lord at thy birth.

About this song: On Christmas Eve, Christians across the world gather to sing, to be reminded of the gift of Jesus, the Christ. As we stand with candles lit and sing, we are reminded of the light that has come into the world in the humblest of ways. Few songs capture the awe of that moment. The realization that the King is here, for me, for you, and there He is asleep in a manger.

100 Pints | 100 Partners

The work we do with local congregations and artists around the country, and the resources we produce are made possible by your financial support. Thank you! This Fall, we are looking for 100 people to partner with us by committing to give $10 or more per month. As a thank you gift, we'll send you one of our liturgical calendar pint glasses (great for seasonal beer...), and in the spirit of Giving Tuesday, Thanksgiving and uh...Halloween?...we'll be giving away a special treat with it. Each week it will be something new, and we promise, no tricks. 

THIS WEEK, when you become a new subscribing supporter we'll send you one of our snazzy pint glasses as well as The Sinner / Saint Devotional! So, help us fund new resources, get free stuff, and partner with us to give away free resources! It only takes $10 a month!

With your new $10 a month subscription for the next year, we'll create: 

  • 12 New song resources

  • 12 new podcast episodes

  • 2 seasonal devotionals 

  • Live events

  • And much more!

DONATE NOW

Doxology

Doxology

Praise God from whom all blessings flow
Praise Him all creatures here below
Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost

Praise God from whom all blessings flow
Praise Him all creatures here below
Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost

Praise God from whom all blessings flow
Praise Him all creatures here below
Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost

Amen. Amen. Amen

About this song:

The Doxology is often sung at the end of a hymn or sometimes alone at the end of a service. It is meant to focus the singer on the trinitarian nature of God. In this version, we’ve arranged it to be sung three times through in an effort to allow the singer to further meditate on the words.

Episode 10 with writer, historian, and storyteller Dr. Dan van Voorhis

Episode 10 with writer, historian, and storyteller Dr. Dan van Voorhis

In episode 10 I sit down with writer, historian, and storyteller Dr. Dan van Voorhis. We discuss his books Monsters and Johann Arndt: A Prophet of Lutheran Pietism as well as his creative process. If you want to learn more about Dan you can visit his website DanvanVoorhis.com, 1517legacy.com, follow him on twitter @dan_vanvoorhis , or tune into his podcast Virtue in the Wasteland.

Sing

Sing

We are a broken people, not worthy of Your grace
Humbly we will enter the temple of Your praise
Fall to our knees, Lay at Your scarred feet
The Lamb who took our place upon the mercy seat

And You sing over us. You sing over us.

And we’ll sing of Your great mercy
Sing of Your great grace
Because of Your great love
We’ll sing aloud Your praise

You are the one,
Who’s made us holy and set apart
Claimed as Your people
We worship You, the One True God

And You sing over us. You sing over us.

And we’ll sing of Your great mercy
Sing of Your great grace
Because of Your great love
We’ll sing aloud Your praise

As You sing, As we sing

As You sing over us. You sing over us.

Sing of Your great mercy
Sing of Your great grace
Because of Your great love
We’ll sing aloud Your praise

And we’ll sing of Your great mercy
Sing of Your great grace
Because of Your great love
We’ll sing aloud Your praise


Music and lyrics by Blake Flattley

CCLI Song# 7064066

Image_Chart_Sing.jpg

About this song:

This song came from a Lutheran understanding of worship, Gottesdienst, meaning, God's service or Divine Service. The idea that God comes to us in His gifts (baptism, His Word, communion) and we then respond to Him. 

The verse from Zephaniah 3:17 helped to shape the idea in this song of the interaction that takes place. We are not merely gathered to sing at God, but He sings over us as we sing to Him. We interact with Him as He continues to point us to the grace that He has poured out for us.

"The Lord your God is with you,
    the Mighty Warrior who saves.
He will take great delight in you;
    in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
    but will rejoice over you with singing.”

~Zephaniah 3:17

Lo, How A Rose E'er Blooming

Lo, how a rose e’er blooming
From tender stem hath sprung! 
Of Jesse’s lineage coming
As prophets long have sung,

It came a flow’ret bright,
Amid the cold of winter, 
When half spent was the night.

Isaiah ‘twas foretold it,
The rose I have in mind;
With Mary we behold it, 
The virgin mother kind.

To show God’s love aright,
She bore to us a Savior, 
When half spent was the night.


O Savior, child of Mary,
Who felt our human woe; 
O Savior, King of glory, 
Who dost our weakness know:

Bring us at length we pray
To the bright courts of heaven, 
And to the endless day.

 

Translated by Theodore Baker & John C. Mattes. 
Adaptation and arrangement by Blake Flattley

photo by Annie Spratt