[This was a liturgy I delivered at my church this past Sunday as we concluded our series “in the beginning”. Here is the amazing message that followed this liturgy.]
Greeting and Preparation
Leader: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Hello, my name is Paul, and welcome to Liberti Church. Liberti Church is a group of people trying to figure out what it means to be a community of believers in Jesus Christ both in and for this city. This may be your first time here–you may have randomly wandered in here or a friend brought you; or, you may be a regular attender here. Either way, we hope you feel welcome to fully participate in this time and space set aside to worship our God.
On this beautiful White Christmas (at least where I’m at), for those precious few of you that will make it online today, I wanted to put up a hymn I wrote a about a year ago. I pray this encourages you and creates anticipation for the Advent that is to come. Merry Christmas.
O Sovereign, Come
Our chains behind us, our sin before us
showing all our crippling need.
Your Grace within us, Your Spirit upon us
transforming our every deed.
After our freedom and we pass through the Red Sea,
let us not forget the desert comes.
Rip through the clouds, tear through the skies;
Let us see that you’re God on High.
O Sovereign, Come. Seize our hearts.
Show yourself as Beautiful.
Your triumph of Glory, You crimson Cross
heralding Your Sovereign Way
of life through our death, enduring our thorns,
completing Your sufferings in ourselves.
Let us embrace your cross that’s set there before us
and know that it precedes the crown.
On that day, when freed from sinning,
how I’ll see Thy lovely Face.
Clothed then in blood-washed linen,
how I’ll sing Thy Sovereign Grace.
Apparently, today was the day that Brent Thomas of Holiday At The Sea (formerly Colossiansthreesixteen.com) decided to start his blog over (you can read why here). So why does this warrant me writing a post? Well, Brent was the one hosting a free album by the amazing band Anathallo. Upon a quick glance at the new site, I didn’t see him express any intention of reposting those songs. So, I’ll be glad to do it myself. Here they are. Just right click the names and save:
Here is Brent’s old post telling the story of this album:
The Greek word anathallo means “To renew, cause to grow, or bloom again,” which is an appropriate umbrella for the band of that name. The band’s music is hard to categorize but yet familiar, experimental yet accessible and often focuses on the themes of renewal and redemption.
In 2004, the band recorded an EP simply entitled “Hymns,” a surprisingly sparse and traditional take on six hymns. The short release demonstrates the band’s loving attention to detail and the creation of ambiance and emotion, not simply through the lyrics but also the music itself. Incorporating many of the harmonies and odd instrumentations of their other releases the release, for the most part, remains true to the hymns themselves and honoring their content. The presentation is both humble and heartfelt, something missing in many “worship” recordings of late.
This was a limited release with all proceeds going to support a homeless mission. It remains out of print (and from what I understand, will not be reprinted) and therefore remains a mystery to many. I was lucky enough to purchase one of the few available copies several months ago and with the band’s permission, I am making the entire release available for download.
May these draw you nearer to Christ. Be sure to thank the band for their generosity.
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