rescue is coming

Setlist 11-27-2016

This week was the first Sunday of Advent, and our songs were gathered around the theme of Hope.  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:

O Come, O Come Emmanuel

Rescue is Coming by David Crowder* Band

Hope (There Will Come A Light) by ubcmusic

Anthem by Leonard Cohen

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. 

O Come, O Come Emmanuel: This song contrasts mourning/longing and hope especially well.  We sang it to begin out time together by locating ourselves both with the people of God before the birth of Christ and with the whole of the people of God in our own time.  

Rescue is Coming: We sang this song to proclaim the same desperate hope that we established in the first song.  Though we may be able to look around and see how dark the world is, we are awaiting the coming of a Light.  The "rescue" we talk about in this song is not one of escapism--it's one of an in-breaking that delivers us from the brokenness of creation, not creation itself.

Hope (There Will Come A Light): This song was written specifically for advent at ubc.  It focuses on the hope of the coming of the Light, but hones in on what that means for the darkness around us--namely, the inauguration of its progressive demise. This song, as well as the rest of our original advent songs are available for free download here.

Anthem: Leonard Cohen had a way of capturing the essence of vulnerability and existential longing.  This song is about hope, perseverance, brokenness, and beauty, all of which are prominent themes of advent.  The hope we carry toward Christmas is a wounded one, and that makes it all the more meaningful.

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 voices the hope we have in Christ, the fire in the darkness.  In this image that comes into the world through John 1, we find the most fundamental summation of the Christian story--God set a light in the darkness that the darkness did not overcome.  Fire is more real than the darkness, such that there is no amount of darkness that can overcome the light of the fire. 

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 7-10-2016

This was the eighth Sunday after Pentecost, and our songs were gathered around the themes of lament and hope. 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:

Rescue Is Coming by David Crowder* Band

Peace (Change Everything) by Jameson McGregor

Because He Lives by Bill and Gloria Gaither

For Those Tears I Died by Jameson McGregor (adapted from M. Stevens)

All Creatures of Our God and King

Doxology

Recordings:

From time to time, we'll post live recordings of the songs from Sunday morning.  These recordings aren't what you would call polished--sometimes guitars are out of tune, sometimes the vocals are off--but they are records of moments we've shared together.  Here's one 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. 

Rescue Is Coming: In the wake of a week full of pain, anger, and longing, we began our time together proclaiming that this present darkness is not the final word.  Now is a time when we need to address systemic issues of racism, police brutality (both racially motivated and not), cultural addictions to violence, and overall division, but we placed those conversation on hold as we entered worship to reorient ourselves toward our only Hope.

Peace (Change Everything):  As we have been moving through these difficult weeks, we have been singing Advent songs, because Advent is the time where we look around, see how dark the world is, and voice our longing for a Light.  We sang Change Everything again this week because it afforded us the chance to voice our longing for change, and to turn to God as the catalyst of this change.  

Because He Lives:  We sang this song with a couple of things in mind: First, the claims made in this song are true—Jesus is alive in a way that is more  than real.  And so, we as individuals can stake our hope in One who is outside of ourselves and be held there.  Second, Jesus is alive in another way in the people of Christ, those who have been and are being formed by His story and Spirit.  Because of this, the people of Christ are partnered with Jesus in actively reconciling the world to God.  But we need to know that sometimes that might mean doing things.

Furthermore,  we need to know that the true claims to hope that Because He Lives makes are quite difficult for some people to claim for themselves.  Namely, the “calm assurance” that our children can face uncertain days because He lives.  If we listen to the cries of the black community in America, there is a decided lack of this "calm assurance," because their life experience says otherwise.  And, yes, there is a way in which the "calm assurance" of Because He Lives is rooted in what Jesus' resurrection means broadly for the whole of human history, but if the church is the body of Christ, and this body is living and breathing in the present, that should bring some measure of hope to the present as well. 

So we sang this as a proclamation of something true, but also as a challenge to ourselves to take seriously the fact that being the people of Christ demands something about the way we move about in the world, and that when we see that life experience makes it difficult for someone to claim the same hope that we do, we should make it our purpose to do something about that.

For Those Tears I Died:  I came across this hymn text a couple of months ago, and started to reimagine it.  After a few weeks of this "reimagining," I had stripped the text down to about 4 lines, knowing that they contained an important truth, but not knowing how to structure the rest of the song.  In the wake of the attack on the LGBT community in Orlando, I started keeping track of things that I was praying as I expressed anger, confusion, and ultimately self-loathing for my own complicity in systems of hate by not being very vocal in combatting them.  The song continued to take shape this past week as I felt more of those same emotions.  This song isn't finished, and I don't know what it will look like when it is.  At the moment, it's part existential despair, part personal confession, and part proclamation of hope.  Probably the most personal side of it for me is the line in the second verse, "I've made an idol out of comfort, praised by keeping my mouth shut//but now it's found a thirst for blood."  I'm what you might call incredibly talented at not speaking out against something I know to be wrong when I feel I can slip by unscathed if I keep my head down.  This is fundamentally unchristian, and I am attempting to lean into repenting of it.

All Creatures of Our God and King: We sang this song to stand alongside creatures of all kinds in acknowledging God as our creator, sustainer, and the One who is  reconciling all things to Godself, knowing that the Story that God is weaving is far from over.

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 11-29-2015

This week was the first week of Advent, and our songs were gathered around the theme of hope.  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

Deliver Me by David Crowder* Band

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Rescue Is Coming by David Crowder* Band

Hope (There Will Come A Light) by Jameson McGregor

Make This Go On Forever (Refrain) by Snow Patrol

Be Thou My Vision

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. 

Deliver Me:  It can be difficult to think/sing about hope without naming any of the circumstances that would demand the looking-foward that comes with hope.  This song was intended to open our time together with a hint of tension; a pleading for deliverance.  While it provides few specifics we might categorize as the things from which we need saving, it does give us the chance to say at least 6 times, "I know that You're the One to pull me through."  The Christian hope, the Advent hope, is not a vague kind of hope--it is a hope singularly focused on the faithfulness of God.

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel: We sang this song to move from a plea for deliverance, and the acknowledgement that God is the One who is the object of our hope, to asking that God would come and save us--to enter into the darkness we call home and flood it with light. 

Rescue Is Coming: We sang this song to put hope into our mouths, proclaiming that rescue is coming.  This is a hope we can shout, but its also a hope we can live in--one we can carry with us without having to escape our every day lives.  It's a hope that allows us to keep moving.

Hope (There Will Come A Light): I wrote this song a couple of years ago for the first week of Advent.  A few months ago, I wrote songs for all the other weeks, too, so we will sing the whole series of songs over the next few weeks.  I recently recorded some video sessions of these songs with some friends in Austin.  The video for this song has been posted here.  

Make This Go On Forever (Refrain): We attached this brief refrain to the end of the offering song because it seems to sum up the longing of advent exceptionally well.  

Be Thou My Vision:  We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week's songs.  This is what we said about Be Thou My Vision then: We sang this song for a couple of reasons.  First, we sang it to find language to offer along with the people of our congregation who shared their stories with us this week, asking for God's wisdom and presence with us.  Second, we sang it to offer the words of the final stanza in light of Christ the King Sunday.

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 10-25-2015

This week, our songs were gathered around the theme of healing.  Yesterday we had a celebration service for the life and legacy of Kyle Lake, our former pastor, marking 10 years since his death in 2005.  If you weren't able to attend the service, I'd encourage you to go check out kylesfilm.com where you can read about Kyle's story.  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

Because He Lives

How He Loves by John Mark McMillan

Rescue Is Coming by David Crowder* Band

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

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. 

Because He Lives: We sang this song to name the hope of the resurrection of Jesus over/against the pain of loss.  This is not merely future hope, but infuses every moment of life with great significance, making it worth living.  

How He Loves: John Mark McMillan has a video telling the story of this song--I think it is important to hear him talk about where this song came from, so I really hope you'll watch it. He wrote this song in response to the death of a close friend, and we sang this after Craig, a close friend of Kyle's, had just shared with us about the way in which Kyle was a gift of God to him and to ubc, and about the journey he has had since then.  I suppose there are several reasons we needed to sing this song in this service, but perhaps the greatest is to put a voice to the fact that the love of God is not beaten back by the anger and grief of loss.  Instead, this love holds strong through those seasons--in the midst of those seasons.

Rescue Is Coming: Josh asked me to put this song in the set this week because he remembered Kyle having a visceral and joyful reaction to it one of the first times Dave played it at ubc.  He told the story of that moment before we sang it and encouraged us to join with Kyle in that moment in singing this song.  As with Because He Lives, this song sets our eyes on some sort of future hope, but the purpose is to affect the here and now--to not give up in the midst of pain--to have the courage to let deep wounds heal.  [Note: Letting deep wounds heal does not mean getting the scars lasered away--while wounds can be debilitating, scars are vessels of memory and carry the story of healing in their own way.]

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.

Hope: We sang this song to proclaim a story that is fundamental to the story of the cosmos: God lit a fire in the darkness that the darkness did not overcome.  We can think about this in many ways--creation and the life/death/resurrection of Jesus are pretty straight-forward examples-- but we sang this song to proclaim it as the story of ubc in the past 10 years.

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

-JM