amazing grace

Setlist 9-1-2019

This past Sunday was the twelfth Sunday after Pentecost, and our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.   If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

House of God Forever by Jon Foreman

Mystery by ubcwaco (adapted from Charlie Hall)

There by Jameson McGregor

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Twice Begun by ubcmusic

Amazing Grace

Doxology

Setlist 8-25-2019

This past Sunday was the eleventh Sunday after Pentecost, and our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.   If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Come Alive by ubcmusic

Wideness by ubcmusic

Amazing Grace

After the Dust Clears by Jameson McGregor

Eternal Anchor by ubcmusic

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Come Alive: We sang this song to ask God to continue to form us in the way of Christ, coming alive in us as we come alive in God.

Wideness: This song celebrates the mercy of God and reminds us that our ideas about God’s mercy tend to be too small.

Amazing Grace: We sang this song to celebrate the work of God in our lives and celebrates the freedom that this brings.

After the Dust Clears: This song is about interpersonal conflict, the passing of time, and grace in the midst of both.

Eternal Anchor: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week’s songs. This is what we said about Eternal Anchor then: This song is about God making all things new.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

Setlist 8-19-2018

Yesterday was the thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost.  Our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

How Great Thou Art

All Creatures of Our God and King by David Crowder* Band

Amazing Grace by Citizens

Inbreaking by Jameson McGregor

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

How Great Thou Art: We sang this song to begin our time together by acknowledging the glory of God in creation, what God has done in Christ, and the ongoing redemption of all creation.

All Creatures of Our God and King: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about All Creatures of Our God and King then: We sang this song to join our voices with the whole of creation acknowledging the grandeur of what God has made.

Amazing Grace: This song offers us language to express the work of God's grace in our lives, and challenges us to be present to the ongoing work of God in who we are becoming.

Inbreaking: This song is a plea for God to break into the chaos of our lives and raise up the Kingdom in our midst.

Wayward Ones: This song invites us to remember the self-giving love of Christ as we participate in communion.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Setlist 5-6-2018

Yesterday was the sixth Sunday of Eastertide, and our songs were gathered with that in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Amazing Grace by Citizens and Saints

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Future/Past by John Mark McMillan

It Is Well

Light and Flame by Jameson McGregor

Heart Won't Stop by John Mark and Sarah McMillan

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Amazing Grace: This song offered us language to begin our gathering proclaiming the grace of God that infuses our lives with vitality.

Wayward Ones: We sing this song every time we take communion to remind ourselves of a couple of things.  First, we are a broken people--though we are seeking to become more like Jesus, we often fail at this.  Second, Christ has given Himself for us despite our brokenness.  We take communion to remember the sacrifice of Jesus on our behalf, even though we did not, and do not, deserve it.

Future/Past: We sang this song to celebrate the self-giving love that God invites us into.

It Is Well: This song offers us language to proclaim an anchor of worth and meaning outside of any given terrible thing we experience, and to look ahead to the re-Creation of all things.

Light and Flame: This song is about the inner identity conflicts that all humans experience and raises the question of whether resurrection is something we go looking for, or something that happens to us.

Heart Won't Stop:  We sang this song to look over our shoulder at the songs from two weeks ago (since last week was Children's Sunday).  This is what we said about Heart Won't Stop then: We sang this song to articulate and celebrate what Easter shows us about how far God is willing to go to set things right with us.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Setlist 4-8-2018

Yesterday was the second Sunday of Eastertide, and our songs were gathered with that in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Crown Him With Many Crowns

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

There's A Wideness in God's Mercy by Jameson McGregor

Murdered Son by John Mark McMillan

Inbreaking by Jameson McGregor

Mystery by Jameson McGregor (adapted from Charlie Hall)

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Crown Him With Many Crowns: We sang this song to orient our attention toward Jesus as the Risen Lord, whose power is made perfect in weakness and whose reign is underscored by nonviolence and love.

Amazing Grace: As we enter Resurrection season, this song offers us language to articulate the sustaining presence of God's grace through the deaths and resurrections we experience in the course of life.

There's A Wideness In God's Mercy: We sang this song to celebrate God's mercy and to remind ourselves that any view we hold about God's rigid wrath says more about us than it does God.

Murdered Son: This song speaks to the death of Jesus as it relates to our own deaths; namely that Christ has grabbed us and raises us with him.

Inbreaking: This song is a plea for the Slaughtered Lamb to raise hope out of brokenness and draw us into the Resurrection life.

Mystery: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Mystery then: We sang this song to proclaim Jesus' rise from death at the hands of political and religious oppressors, and raised this as a challenge for us to rise to the aid of the oppressed.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Setlist 2-4-2018

Yesterday was the fifth Sunday of Epiphany, and the songs were gathered with that in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Amazing Grace by Citizens and Saints

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Pulse by Jameson McGregor

Just the Same by Jameson McGregor

Hope by Jameson McGregor

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Amazing Grace: This song offers us language to express the transformative grace of God revealed in the Person of Jesus.

Wayward Ones: We sing this song every time we take communion to remind ourselves of a couple of things.  First, we are a broken people--though we are seeking to become more like Jesus, we often fail at this.  Second, Christ has given Himself for us despite our brokenness.  We take communion to remember the sacrifice of Jesus on our behalf, even though we did not, and do not, deserve it.

Pulse: This song expresses the interconnectivity of God's creatures that is revealed through the life and ministry of Jesus.

Just the Same: Epiphany offers us the chance to encounter Jesus again and to re-calibrate the lens through which we view him.  This ends up being an opportunity to intentionally seek to revise our models of faith, which will launch us into this more intentionally during Lent.  In revising our faith models, we are faced with the reality that, over time, the things we believe to be true about God change.  This song is about the complexity of the hope and grief of coming to terms with that change.

Hope: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Hope then: Among the things we come to find revealed in Jesus is how far God is willing to go to set things right with us.  In the incarnation, long before we reach the love revealed in the Passion, we find an act of radical love and empathy: the self-emptying of God into humanity.  This song gives voice to a hope rooted in God having demonstrated God's decision to set things right in Creation.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 9-17-2017

This was the fifteenth Sunday after Pentecost.  Our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Come Thou Fount

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Your Love is Strong by Jon Foreman

Breathe for Me by Jameson McGregor

There's A Wideness In God's Mercy  by Jameson McGregor (adapted from F. Faber)

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Come Thou Fount: When this song is in the set, we almost always sing it first.  This is because it offers us language to orient our attention toward inviting God to shape us around who God has been for the people of God in the past.  By some measure, one of our main concerns in our liturgy is to remember the work of God in the world.  This implication is made most plain in the second stanza that talks about raising an Ebenezer, which, if you don't know, is a monument to signify God's showing up in a time of need.  It is a monument of remembrance.  The song also has some significant themes of God's faithfulness to us, and a petition for God to transform us through God's Story.  During Ordinary time, this is doubly significant, because it mirrors the part of the story that we now find ourselves in--Christ has died, Christ has risen, and Christ will come again (but hasn't yet).  These words serve to reorient us toward God in a time where we are left to work with the Spirit to look for and lean into the inbreaking of the Kingdom in our particular time and place.

Amazing Grace: We sang this song to remind ourselves of the grace of God both in our particular stories and the larger Story in which we find ourselves.  In the context of this week's sermon text, this song served to remind us of the forgiveness extended to us through the grace of God that we are called to extend to those who wrong us.

Your Love Is Strong: This song gives us words to acknowledge the work of God in our lives in both mundane and significant ways, and rises into an offering of the Lord's Prayer, where we essentially ask God to keep showing up and to transform us into people who relate to one another in a way that is transformed by the grace we have received.

Breathe For Me: This song is a prayer for re-creation.  It gives voice to the sort of wearing thin that comes about when we live in a broken world, and asks the Spirit of God to form us anew and breathe life into us.

There's A Wideness In God's Mercy: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about There's A Wideness In God's Mercy then: This song is a reminder to us that God's mercy is greater than we deem reasonable, and that our thinking is much more bound by rules than God's.  We sang it to proclaim the good news, and to challenge ourselves together to imagine the breadth of God's mercy.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 8-27-2017

This was the twelfth Sunday after Pentecost.  Our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Heart Won't Stop by John Mark McMillan

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

There by Jameson McGregor

Wild One by Jameson McGregor

Pulse by Jameson McGregor

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Heart Won't Stop: As we carry the fullness of the Christian story through ordinary time, we also carry our tendency to ebb and flow in living up to the call placed upon us by this story.  We sang this song to remind ourselves that there is nowhere we can go where God is not, and that God's pursuit of us is not conditional upon us having a season of exceptional success in living up to our calling. 

Amazing Grace: This song is a proclamation of the work God has done in our lives, and is a challenge we pose to ourselves to carry the grace of God with us in our lives.

There: This is a song about transcendence.  God stands over and above any source of anxiety we might have, no matter the gravity, and God will remain far after every dreadful thing fades away.  As a result God is an anchor for us in our worry.  This Anchor does not immediately rid us of any struggle, darkness, or pain, but it does allow us to locate ourselves within a story that isn't finished yet.

Wild One: This song is about the idolatry that results when we confuse our ideas about God with who God actually is.  There is much we can know about who God is, but this knowing is perpetually broadened over the course of life.  Because of this, we would do well to maintain a loose grip (though a grip, nonetheless) on our ideas about God, being willing to learn about, and be surprised by, God.

Pulse: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Pulse then: This song is about the interconnectivity of creation--that the Spirit of Life is woven through the whole cosmos. It's also about our propensity to completely ignore this and decide instead which parts of God's beloved creation we want to consider worthy of love.  It is a confession of our brokenness and a petition for God to make us new.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 7-30-2017

This was the eighth Sunday after Pentecost.  Our songs were gathered with this in mind, and heavily influenced by the lectionary texts.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

There's A Wideness in God's Mercy by Jameson McGregor (adapted from F. Faber)

Mystery by Jameson McGregor (adapted from Charlie Hall)

O Love That Will Not Let Me Go by Jameson McGregor (adapted from Ascend the Hill)

Hope by Jameson McGregor

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Amazing Grace: This song moves from a general sense of God's grace in our lives to a more particular consideration of what effect the grace of God has on the way we live.  This is gathered into an implicit challenge to live as stories of grace and agents of reconciliation.

There's A Wideness In God's Mercy: This song serves as a reminder of two things: 1) God's mercy extends to us far more generously than we think we deserve; and 2) God's mercy extends to other people far more generously than we think they deserve.  

Mystery: This song champions the story of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection as a song of hope for all of creation.

O Love That Will Not Let Me Go: This is a hymn to God's enduring presence with us.  Rather than speaking of the difficulty to hold on to God in the midst of suffering, it proclaims God's presence with those who suffer.  

Hope: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Hope then: This song clings to the hope that the work of redemption made visible in the Resurrection will spread to the entirety of the cosmos.  This hope is characterized as such because, at the moment, things are still not as they should be--the weeds are growing up with the wheat, so to speak.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 4-30-2017

This week was the third Sunday of Easter, and our songs were gathered around the theme of....Easter.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Death In His Grave by John Mark McMillan

How Great Thou Art

Because He Lives by Bill and Gloria Gaither

Inbreaking by Jameson McGregor

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Death In His Grave: We sang this song to narrate again the defeat of death that we observe in this season.  

How Great Thou Art: This song gives us language to situate the death and resurrection of Jesus within a broader observation of God's grandeur.  The song begins with an observation of the wonders God has made throughout the cosmos, and goes on to observe the trajectory of God's making all things new.  In the chorus, it offers us a chance to practice channeling this wonder into praise of God.

Because He Lives:  This song takes a few swings at articulating the ways in which the Resurrection shapes the way we engage life now--particularly life's uncertain elements.  It offers us the chance to pull the thread between Jesus' breaking through one of the more absolute elements of finite existence (death), and any anxieties we might have about life.  Put differently, the Event of the resurrection calls into question what we think we know about how the world works, and gives us reason to hold the stubborn hope that God is actively working to redeem every broken part of creation.  This connection is easy to pay lip service to, but really living as though it were true is a life project. 

Inbreaking: I've been working on this song for a couple of months.  For the first few weeks, I had a handful of lines, but had no idea what they meant.  As I kept working at it, I started to see Easter themes emerging.  Taken all together, this is a song about the Risen Lord raising us also, both as individuals and as the Body of Christ.  It's not squarely focused on the events of Easter, but it is intimately concerned with the role that Eastertide plays in the life of the Church year.

Amazing Grace: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Amazing Grace then: The Resurrection is a transformative act of grace that has implications for the whole of creation.  It is a Yes to life and the created world. This song talks about the implications of the Resurrection for our lives, and we sang it to rehearse speaking the truth about God's ongoing redemption project in our midst.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 4-23-2017

This week was the second Sunday of Easter, and our songs were gathered around the theme of....Easter.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Heart Won't Stop by John Mark and Sarah McMillan

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Rise Up by Bifrost Arts

Noise by Jameson McGregor

Mystery by Jameson McGregor (adapted from Charlie Hall)

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Heart Won't Stop: In Easter, we find that there are no barriers that God is not willing to cross to set things right with us.  The refrain of "Your heart won't stop coming after me" is about more than just a vague notion of the Love of God, but rather speaks to the redemptive force of the Love of God.  This season offers us an opportunity to consider the work that God is doing in creation, and the God is drawing us into in our own lives.

Amazing Grace: The Resurrection is a transformative act of grace that has implications for the whole of creation.  It is a Yes to life and the created world. This song talks about the implications of the Resurrection for our lives, and we sang it to rehearse speaking the truth about God's ongoing redemption project in our midst.

Rise Up: This song takes up the resurrection theme from a different angle; namely, that of the implications of the Resurrection for justice in the world.  Christ took up the cause of the oppressed (became oppressed), entered the depths of suffering and death, and in rising again, offers a distinct kind of hope that cycles of violence and oppression are not locked into the tracks they appear to be.  Christ's rising offers hope that the lowly to can rise.  The chorus of the song can be looked at in two ways: a plea for God to rise up to defend the cause of the oppressed, and a call to one another, as the body of Christ, to rise up to defend the cause of the oppressed. We sang this song to begin to broaden our understanding of who Jesus is as the Risen One, and who we are called to be as resurrection people.

Noise: This song is about God painting death and resurrection onto our lives by entering into our suffering and drawing us through it.  

Mystery:  We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Mystery then:  This is a protest song.  And Easter is a protest day.  In the Resurrection of Jesus, we have the defeat of death, yes, but we also have an empire and religious institution put to shame as their supposedly final assertion of power over the trouble-maker Jesus doesn't work.  If the power that corrupt systems of oppression carry is falsified, these systems cannot hope to stand for long.  So, the formula Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again is multi-valent, and one of those valences is of the raised-fist variety.  This was true then, and it is true now.  

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 2-19-2017

This week was the seventh Sunday of Epiphany, and our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Rise Up by Bifrost Arts

How Great Thou Art

Lifted/Lifting by Jameson McGregor

Holy, Holy, Holy

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Amazing Grace: We sang this song to begin our time together acknowledging the grace of God as it is revealed in the person of Jesus, and the way that this grace has impacted and continues to impact our lives.

Rise Up: This song contrasts the disposition of the God of justice with the inconsistent presence of justice in the world, and rises to a plea for God to act and set things right in the world.  It serves a double-purpose: to confess the truth about who God is and to raise a petition for God to show up, and also to remind ourselves of the way we should seek to conduct ourselves in the world if we are to call ourselves people of God.

How Great Thou Art: This song is an exercise in wonder.  It allows us to practice connecting the wonders of creation, the redemption story that unfolds in the Bible, and the reconciliation Hope we carry, to the One who is responsible for all of them.  This is ultimately the same function of the season of Epiphany.

Lifted/Lifting: This song is about being more fully formed in the way of Christ.  When we encounter the Person of Jesus through the Bible, a sermon, etc., we are unable to erase this experience, and are thus changed in some way.  When we embrace that Person and seek to become more like him, we are further changed.  Somewhere in the midst of this, one might say that a veil is lifted, revealing both who God is and who we are.  But the journey toward being formed in the way of Christ is a life-long pursuit.  We keep changing and the veil keeps lifting.  This song confesses this reality, and asks that the Spirit would continue to transform us, to cultivate the fledgling Hope we carry into full bloom, and to spread the fruit of this hope through the world where the Light is not overcome, yet there is still darkness. 

This song is still a work in progress, but I recorded a rough demo of the way it exists now, in the event that you want to listen again:

Holy, Holy, Holy: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Holy, Holy, Holy last week: We began with this song to start off our morning calibrating our attention to the Triune God, confessing that our comprehension of God is blurred by our human condition, yet also confessing what we do know to be true: God's might, mercy, power, love, and lordship over all of creation. 

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 10-9-2016

This was the twenty-first Sunday after Pentecost, and our songs around the theme of healing.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Wandering by Jameson McGregor

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

There's A Wideness in God's Mercy by Jameson McGregor (adapted from F. Faber)

Breathe For Me by Jameson McGregor

Lord, I Need You by Matt Maher

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Wandering:  We sang this song to celebrate God's faithfulness to us, even though our faithfulness to God is inconsistent, at best.  With the theme of healing in mind, we might think of God's relentless choice to be God-for-us as the method of God's healing us.  God is actively healing us of our brokenness all the time, though this process is slow.  And, because God has chosen to redeem what God has made, we can trust that God will be faithful to do exactly that.

Amazing Grace: This song is an exercise in looking back to look forward.  The saving work that God has enacted in our lives is not a one-off event, but instead is indicative of the way God acts toward us in general.  So, looking back at the glimmers of hope or healing in our stories, we move forward knowing that there will be more.

There's A Wideness in God's Mercy: This song confronts our tendency to try to talk ourselves out of any confidence in God's faithfulness to be God-for-us--as though we could disqualify ourselves.  Instead, it reminds us that the love of God is not limited by our own sense of what kind or degree of mercy we deserve.

Breathe for Me: The healing we experience in our lives of faith tends to cycle--that is, we usually break again in one way or another.  This song is a record of re-breaking, and a plea for healing: for God to start over with the dust and ash of what is left, form it clean, and breath into it again.

Lord, I Need You:  We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Lord, I Need You Then: This song voices our need for God's help in all aspects of life, but particularly when it comes to doing the things that we should do.  Left to our own devices, we have a tendency to disappoint--or, worse, harm--ourselves and those around us.  Over time, we might find ourselves more permanently formed by the Spirit, but we never get to the point where we do not in fact need God's presence.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 8-7-2016

This was the twelfth Sunday after Pentecost, and our songs were gathered with anticipation of the Kingdom in mind. Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Chariot by Page France

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Pulse by Jameson McGregor

Bonfire by Jameson McGregor

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Chariot: This song embodies the longing for God to break into history and deliver the distinctively untragic end to the story God is weaving.  The history of Christianity has been marked by a constant sense of waiting on this moment, and this waiting is significant in at least two ways.  The first is direct in that we await the return of Christ and the resurrection of the dead.  The second is indirect in that this waiting for God's redemptive project to be completed colors the way we move about in the world--namely, we should allow the vision of the Kingdom in fullness to be the pattern that we live by.  We don't have to wait for the Kingdom to come in fullness to live as though it's already here.  Because it is here--or can be-- among those who have been shaped by the story of Jesus.

Amazing Grace: This song engages our anticipation of the fullness of the Kingdom of God by reflecting on the way that God's rule has already been present in our lives through God's grace, and it also looks ahead to the joyous abundance of the Kingdom (when we've been there ten thousand years...). 

Pulse: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Pulse then: We sang this song to be reminded of the gift of life that God has given to all of creation, and to lament our tendency to ignore the dignity of this gift in people who are different than us.

Bonfire:  This song traces the vast difference between what it is to be God and what it is to be us, and looks forward to the fullness of the Kingdom where the pain brought by this difference is mended.  It also notes the fact that the Kingdom breaks through even now and undermines the fears that we have called our refuge. 

Wayward Ones: We sing this song every time we take communion to remind ourselves of a couple of things.  First, we are a broken people--though we are seeking to become more like Jesus, we often fail at this.  Second, Christ has given Himself for us despite our brokenness.  We take communion to remember the sacrifice of Jesus on our behalf, even though we did not, and do not, deserve it.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 6-19-2016

This was the fifth Sunday after Pentecost, and our songs were gathered around the theme of perseverance (this is the best one-word way I could think of to describe this--more broadly, they were gathered around the theme of clinging to faith in the midst of difficulty). Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, you can find recordings from Sunday morning of a few of them, and below the recordings, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Fall Afresh by Jeremy Riddle

Noise by Jameson McGregor

Hope (There Will Come A Light) by Jameson McGregor

Future/Past by John Mark McMillan

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Amazing Grace: We sang this song to proclaim the saving work of God in our lives, and to cite the ways that God has been faithful to us in our stories as cause to expect God to continue to be faithful to us.  

Fall Afresh: We sang this song to ask the Spirit to continually renew our zeal for life, to provide strength to press on through woundedness, and to transform our hearts of stone into hearts that are attuned to the movement of God.

Noise: This song traces out the gap between what is it to be God and what it is to be us, acknowledges our tendency to make broken promises of our lives, and rejoices in the reality that God continually works to repair us.  As no recorded version of this song exists, you can listen to it again through this video:

Hope (There Will Come A Light): Before I played this song, I read the following preface:

In December, we enter the season of Advent, where we sort of put blinders on and enter a drama where Jesus has not yet come.  During this time, we look around and see how dark the world is and how it very badly needs a Light.  And then on Christmas, God puts a light in the darkness.  Over the next few months, we watch the Light grow, until, on Good Friday, the Light is snuffed out.  But then, on Easter, the Light comes blazing back onto the scene, and we see that things are changed. And they are. But sometimes this feels less true than others.  Like the Kingdom of Heaven, this change is already and not-yet. It’s as if Hope has been planted in the midst of creation.  Paul gives us an image of history being “pregnant”—Hope is among us and it is growing. And so, we wait.  We wait for a Birth.  And now the story has circled back on itself, hasn’t it?  In a minute, I’m going to play an Advent song called “Hope,” because we carry the longing of Advent with us all the time, and—even through grit teeth—it is fitting to proclaim that a Light will come into this darkness.

Future/Past:  We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Future/Past then: This song presents the grandeur of God and underscores the fact that God has called us "friends." Taken with the idea of God's faithfulness, this song bolsters our assurance that God is with us in the same way in the midst of the joy and the pain of life, and that, just as our past has been marked by this, we can remain confident that our future will be as well.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 4-10-2016

This was the third week of Easter, and our songs were gathered around that theme. Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Heart Won't Stop by John Mark McMillan

Amazing Grace by Citizens and Saints

All the Poor and Powerless by All Sons and Daughters

When Death Came Calling by Jameson McGregor

All Creatures of our God and King

Doxology

Recordings:

From time to time, we'll post live recordings of the songs from Sunday morning.  Here are a couple from this week.

 

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Heart Won't Stop: This song echoes Psalm 139's sentiment that there is no place we can go to escape God; that God keeps choosing to be God for us, regardless of whether or not we are good at being people of God.  That idea is huge from the vantage point of the Psalms, but it seems like it is wholly overshadowed in light of the Resurrection--it's not just that God is God for us regardless of where we hang our hats, but rather that God has chosen to be God with us in the midst of our darkest moments, and rewrote the cycle of life and death to make this known to us.  If you've never heard the original version of this song, you should go look it up.  In the meantime, here is a video of John Mark McMillan performing it....with Stand By Me mashed in their too...

Amazing Grace: While we spent the season of Lent thinking about sin, we will spend the season of Easter thinking about grace.  This song by no means captures the fullness of what might be said of the grace revealed in the death and Resurrection of Jesus, but it's a good start.  I think most poignantly, it doesn't just speak to the effect of grace upon our salvation--that gets a lot of airtime (and, yeah, it's important)--but instead speaks to the way grace affects our lives here and now.  In choosing to be God for us by being God-with-us, God has given us a vantage point from which we can truly be alive:  the end of the human life is no longer death but resurrection.  The Resurrection wove a new kind of beauty into life that we can now embrace.  This is a grace to us.  

All the Poor and Powerless: The Resurrection is good news in too many ways to count.  Some look to the Resurrection at the moment in Jesus' life where His divinity was finally made clear, which makes sense, since even the disciples seemed to be on the fence up until the end.  So we might think of the Resurrection as the moment where all the things that people knew to be true of Jesus became things they knew to be true of God in a new way.  One of those things was that Jesus stood with the people on the bottom rung of society--with the ones other people didn't care for or think were good enough in general.  The Resurrection made it clear that this wasn't just some guy who, from some vantage points, was also worthy of very little attention, but instead was God.  That's the kind of thing you'd want to shout from a mountain--that God stands with the afflicted, the unimportant, the cast-off and unloved--and that's why we sang this song.

When Death Came Calling: This is a song about grief in light of the Resurrection.  We often hear associated with Easter that death has lost it's sting.  That's always been perplexing to me, and I didn't have to live very much life to realize that the most literal meaning of that phrase was simply not true.  Death stings.  Sometimes it's a sting that causes debilitating emotional pain.  Sometimes it's a sting that seems to carry a toxin that leaves your entire body and mind numb.  For a while, I thought I was a bad Christian for wearing grief heavily, but then I finally acquired some context to put behind the famous "Jesus wept" verse--Jesus wept because He was grieving, and He was grieving because death is grief-worthy.  And I think this is still true after the Resurrection.  The sting that death lost is a sting of a different kind, perhaps better labeled "finality."  It's a sting that we will find missing later, replaced by the beauty of creation reborn.

All Creatures of Our God and King: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about All Creatures of Our God and King then: We sang this song to begin our time together proclaiming that the resurrection of Jesus affected more than just our personal salvation--it was an emphatic yes to life, to creation as a whole.  Now every inch of the cosmos sings a song not just proclaiming that it was created by God, but that God entered into it, took on the cycle of life and death that permeates the whole of creation, and ultimately broke through that cycle and crowned it with Resurrection.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos.

-JM

Setlist 1-10-2016

This week was the first Sunday after Epiphany.  Epiphany is an interesting season.  It begins with the Epiphany (the Star, wise men, etc.), which begins a journey through moments in Jesus' life that serve to reveal Jesus' divinity and mission (baptism, miracles, Transfiguration).  These moments are "epiphanies" in their own right, but the church calendar postures them as looking over their shoulder at Epiphany (that's why its the first Sunday after Epiphany, rather than the first Sunday of Epiphany/the epiphanies).  Anyway. Our songs were gathered around the theme of what the Incarnation reveals to us about who God is.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Heart Won't Stop by John Mark McMillan

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Because He Lives by Bill Gaither

Wild One by Jameson McGregor

Holy, Holy, Holy

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Heart Won't StopThe language of this song is taken from Psalm 139, and it proclaims the fact that we cannot outrun the love of God, and there is no hole that we can dig ourselves that is deep enough to convince God to finally leave us alone.  In the Word becoming flesh in Jesus, God sends a clear message about just how far God is willing to go to set things right with Creation.  And while this self-humbling of God is profound on its own, we know that this is not the part of the Christian story where we see God go the furthest for us.  We sang this song because it reminds us that God-with-us is a label that God took upon Godself on purpose, and God did not ask humanity what we thought first--we are loved, whether we think it is appropriate or not.

Amazing Grace: We sang this song to look at the significance of the Word becoming flesh from a different angle, where we think of the fact that God's choosing to be God-with-us has fundamentally changed the way that we exist in the world.  God-with-us means that we are not left to our own devices, but rather have a Fellow Traveler in the world Who knows our struggles and feels our pain, yet does not mirror our faults.  When this understanding meets the love of God, we find something we might call grace.

Because He Lives:  I normally think of the Resurrection when I hear this song, but I think it carries, at the very least, a double entendre.  We sang this song because the fact that the Word became flesh--the fact that God chose to be God-with-us--means that we can have a new kind of Hope.  The darkness of Advent has been pierced by a Fire in its midst, and the darkness cannot overcome it.  If nothing else, at this early part of the Christian story, we know that the Story is far from over, and this is the hope we carry with us, facing each new day with expectation.

Wild One: We sang this song because the Word becoming flesh reveals to us that God is not pinned down by who we expect God to be.  The people of God were not expecting a Messiah like Jesus.  Our most pristine theological categories struggle to make sense of why God would enter our mess of a world in vulnerability rather than destroying it and starting over.  The aim of this song is to refocus our minds on the fact that it is God--God-with-us-- who is worthy of our worship, not our most comfortable picture of God.  That is to say, we must constantly be looking for a God who is on the move, who is dynamic, rather than assuming that we figured God out long ago.  The God revealed in Jesus is a God who is full of surprises and is not easily categorized or mapped out.

Holy, Holy, Holy: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Holy, Holy, Holy then: We sang this song to specifically locate our worship of Jesus within the scope of the Triune God.  

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Setlist 10-18-2015

This week, our songs were gathered around the theme of struggle.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

Future/Past by John Mark McMillan

Oceans by Hillsong United

Unyielding by Sarah Dossey Keilers (Dossey)

Wandering by Jameson McGregor

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Amazing Grace: We sang this song as an exercise in perspective--to champion what God has done for us already over/against the struggles that we now face.  When I find myself in the midst of a difficult or dark time, and I can't see the end of it, that sometimes the only comfort I can find is in looking back on the things that God has brought me through in the past, and that is sometimes enough to convince me that there will be a day when my present pain is something I can look back on as well, knowing that it ended.  Probably the most straight-forward line of this song for our purposes this week is Through many dangers toils and snares i have already come//Twas grace that brought me safe thus far and grace will lead me home.  I want to be clear that I am under no illusion that looking back can cancel out the struggles we face in the present, but I am convinced it can be enough to give us strength to keep moving forward.

Future/Past: I suppose this song, too, is an exercise in perspective.  We sang it to put into our mouths an expression of the fact that, though God commands unlimited cosmic power--and is thus a fundamentally superior and more real Person than any of us--God has bent low to regard us not simply as creatures who exist, but creatures with whom God desires to relate; creatures for whom to care.  This is great and terrifying news for us, and it makes a difference in how we view both the future and the past.  It means that there is significance to every moment that is beyond us; that there is hope in the midst of struggle around which we cannot wrap our minds.

Oceans: We sang this song to proclaim that God not only delivers us from struggles, but is with us in the midst of them.  God's faithfulness to us allows us to keep our eyes above the waves of chaos, which is to say that we can maintain a sense of perspective marked by trust in the midst of uncertainty--that our eyes can in some way maintain contact with God, though the rest of us in caught in despair.

Unyielding: Sarah has written a blog about this song on her band site--check it out!

Wandering: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Wandering then: We sang this song to proclaim that God is faithful to us even when we consistently misconstrue what it is to be faithful.  The verses of this song imagine various ways in which we recognize the power of God, then try to harness this power for our own devices--with what seem to be the best of intentions--and how God chooses to continue to journey with us anyway, coaxing us into understanding that God is not one to be tamed.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Setlist 9-13-2015

This week, our songs were gathered around the theme of transformation.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics. Below the songs, there is an example of one way you might think of these songs in light of this week's theme. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs

Amazing Grace by Citizens & Saints

How Great Thou Art

Be Thou My Vision

Pain by Jameson McGregor

Fall Afresh by Jeremy Riddle

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Amazing Grace: Perhaps the most surface-level take away from this song is that the Grace of God has saved us, and I think that is legitimate, but we sang Amazing Grace this week to think about the fact that this gift of Grace does not merely change our status of salvation, but knocks around in our lives and transforms us into people who are more like Jesus.  

How Great Thou Art: We sang this song to practice recognizing the works of God in history, and responding with praise.  This response is something we partner with the Holy Spirit to cultivate within ourselves--a transformation that we would do well to leave ourselves open to.  We can easily get to a place where we accept the wonders of God as simply the way things are, but this song calls us to maintain a sense of awe--to allow ourselves to be transformed into a people who carry a sensitivity to such wonders.  This might look like being the kind of people who are excited--and driven to worship--when the scientific community discovers another layer of complexity in the cosmos, knowing that science more often than not opens up doors to seeing just how much we don't know about the way things work.  It might also look like being the kind of people who, upon seeing someone do something we would consider awful, turn our minds to the dark places in ourselves and think about what God has done for us, and how much more God can do within us.  

Be Thou My Vision: We sang this song as a communal prayer that God would transform the way we see the world, and the way we live in it.  [I changed a line of this song over the summer--if you missed the explanation for that change, you can check out the setlist from that week here.]

Pain: This song is about the danger of keeping our pain locked up in ourselves.  I have two broad categories of pain in mind here.  On the one hand, this pain might be considered externally caused--the emotional effects of something that has happened.  On the other hand, the pain I'm talking about is self-inflicted--it's the guilt, the fear of being found out, that accompanies our own downfalls.  I can't speak for you, but I know that my tendency is to try and ignore things that hurt me (in an emotional sense), regardless of how serious they are, thinking I can move on unscathed this way.  The problem is, I've found that pain has a way of poisoning me to a certain extent--be it through leaving me with a dull anger that affects my general mood, or through sizzling like white noise, clouding my thoughts and social interactions.  My inclination is to carry my own weight, so to speak, but I'm ill-equipped for such a task.  Jesus talks about setting aside our heavy "yokes" and taking up His easy "yoke."  I'm pretty sure he's talking about setting aside a meticulous code of religious laws, and taking up the law of love, but I don't think it is inappropriate to apply the same image to our own anxieties and sources of pain.  I've been thinking about anxiety and emotional suffering a lot lately, and I've been asking a lot of questions.  One of these is why the pain of [insert source of emotional suffering] fades over time.  Why do things that wreck us emotionally have the potential to get better over time?  One answer might be this: the context changes: the world didn't end, life moved on, or something good came out of a bad situation.  I think this sort of change of context is what we are offered by God.  While God doesn't necessarily take our pain away, the Gospel extends to us the hope of a context-change that just might take some of the weight away in the present.  In God, we find the potential for the way we think about pain to be transformed.  This is a new one, so be sure to check out the lyrics and email me with any questions.

Fall Afresh: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  Here's what we said about Fall Afresh then: We sang this song to voice our dependence on the Spirit for living life to the fullest and for taking our journey of faith seriously.  

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM