The Day I Joined Our Worship Team

As I was going through some old posts, I came across what I wrote below which I am re-posting today. It was just over six years ago when I first joined Faith Community Church’s worship team. Today, our church celebrated its inaugural service in our new 1400-seater facility.  The photo is of today’s team resting in the backstage area just before the start of the service. It has been an incredible six year journey so far, and I’m incredibly grateful to work with such a dedicated and talented team of worshippers, singers, musicians and techies. After the relief of moving into our new home, and reflecting on the day that was, the fact that we have such a facility is a great gift from God – a truly remarkable grace. And when I think about the magnitude of that grace, it’s a challenge for us as a team to respond accordingly; to give back to God all that He truly deserves. This will inform how we do ministry in the next chapter ahead – to be a truly innovative, ground-breaking, passionate, world-class worship team that brings glory to God, and to connect the lost in the act of encounter. I’m excited about what God will do in the next phase of Faith Community Worship.

Photo credit: Dennis Tng

I was really thrilled yesterday to get an email yesterday as follows:

Congratulations! You have been successful in the FCC worship audition. Welcome to the team!

It was a good thing my wife ordered me some in-ear earphones from Catch of the Day!

My joining the Faith Community Church worship team is significant to me for at least three reasons.

First, I believe that the church family is not only intended to be a source of support, encouragement and spiritual growth, but it should also play an important role in releasing you into your spiritual destiny.

Second, being part of a church ministry helps you get plugged into the life of the church and to tap into the heartbeat of the church. Since we’ve joined FCC, we’ve tried to get involved in as many different activities within the church as possible. But it’s ad hoc and different to actually being part of something ongoing where you can see see sustained growth, face challenges and share triumphs with a group of people with the same heart amd goal within a ministry.

Third, the skills and anointing of a worship leader can only be properly honed in the context of a local church. This is where worship is at its most raw and honest. There is no hype of a conference, or bright lights or inflated faith. Just real people going through the challenges of life and seeking to encounter God through joys, disappointments, triumphs and defeats.

By that same token, I’ll be rostered soon on backing vocals. I actually don’t believe I should be leading worship in the short term because to successfully lead worship in a local church, you have to get to know your congregation before you can pastor them into God’s presence. You need to know what makes them tick, what season they are going through and their corporate sentiments.

I’m looking forward to knowing FCC a lot better. For now, I’m really grateful to be part of a worship team again. Time to dust off those vocal chords!

Masterpieces of Grace

One of the hallmarks of Faith Community Church, as an intentional disciplemaking church, is its focus on the depth of God’s word through teaching. Each year, our church pulpit team will preach expositorily through an Old Testament book and a New Testament book.

On 22 July this year, I had the privilege of preaching my first ever expository sermon on Ephesians 2:1-10. It’s actually a lot harder than it looks.

Here is the video recording, thanks to Faith Community Church’s media team.

My message focused on four movements within the passage:

  • The Rescue of Grace
  • The Glory of Grace
  • The Mystery of Grace
  • The Purpose of Grace

I took inspiration from David Pawson’s commentary on Ephesians, Rob Bell’s Velvet Elvis, Tim Keller and Bill Johnson.

Hope you enjoy it!

Week 5 Chronicles: Choir Sunday

Choir Sunday Photo 1

Over the past few months, as part of our worship team’s vision to hone and strengthen our craft, our vocalists have been going through group coaching with Mel Crothers, a worship leader, singer and performing artist in our city.

To cap it all off, our vocals director, Sunray Zheng, decided to put on a special worship set on 30 September 2018: led by a choir of over 25 of our singers.

It just so happened that that Sunday was also the first Sunday of Faith Community Church’s moving into our new facility. It was an apt way to start our first service, because in my view, nothing is more representative of worshipping congregation than having a choir lead worship. It speaks of the power of multifarious voices united to create a sound that no one person can muster on their own – differing gifts combined into a greater whole that is more than the sum of its parts. A picture of the church, really.

Choir Sunday Photo 2

Sunray contextualised the moment with an apt setlist, beginning with “Trading My Sorrows” to remind us that we were leaving our past behind and moving forward into our new season; culminating in the powerful declaration of “What a Beautiful Name It Is” (in gospel version with Siska Sands on lead) and ending with “When I Think About the Lord” (featuring Ritchell Lim). It was a reminder that the God who was faithful in the past will continue to be faithful into the future.

I’m looking forward to a season of new influence and new territory for FCC.

Here’s the recording:

Photo credits: Faith Community Church

The Year of Jubilee!

Leviticus 25:8ff says:

Count off seven sabbath years—seven times seven years—so that the seven sabbath years amount to a period of forty-nine years. Then have the trumpet sounded everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement sound the trumpet throughout your land. Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each of you is to return to your family property and to your own clan. The fiftieth year shall be a jubilee for you; do not sow and do not reap what grows of itself or harvest the untended vines. For it is a jubilee and is to be holy for you…

This year, 2017, is the year of Jubilee. Not only in the spiritual sense, but as a matter of fact. The last year of Jubilee was in 1967, when Jerusalem fell into the hands of the Jewish people after the Six Day War.

It is incredibly significant that I’m now living through a year of Jubilee.  But it is also significant that Peter Tsukahira from Israel is coming to Perth to speak on the subject of “Jubilee for You”.

And I am so privileged to be part of the amazing worship team for the conference with musicians and singers from different congregations around Perth:

Vocals: Me, Julie Hollett (New Life Freo), Sunray Zheng (Faith Community Church), Tim Loy (Kingsway Christian Church)
Keys: Julie Hollett
Electric Guitar: Tamon Nishikawa (Nations Church)
Bass: Johanan Ling (Kingdom Light)
Drums: Shane Wee (Faith Community Church)

Here are the details:

I’m just brushing up on all the Messianic songs now. It will be a blast!

Week 5 Chronicles: Classics Sunday

Week 5 Chronicles is an occasional series on experiments in worship format whenever there is a fifth Sunday in a month.

Psalm 145:4 says:

One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts.

I have been leading worship for over 20 years. In that time, I have seen the landscape of church worship shift significantly.

I was blessed that, in my early years,  I studied under an established older worship leader who used a lot of songs from the 1970s and 1980s as well as some of the more contemporary songs of his era. It meant that I was collecting a song vocabulary that extended well into the generation before mine.

There are many reasons why I love the old songs. I believe it’s not just because I grew up with them and that they have somehow been locked into a sacred chamber of my memory. It’s because the songs were written with a strong congregational focus; with simple, predictable melodies and hooks and uncomplicated, repetitive lyrics.

But times have moved on. We can’t keep doing the old stuff. We don’t want to live in an old, worn-out culture. We want to be on the cutting edge of what God is doing today. We can definitely learn from, and honour, the old, but we must live in the new. Old wineskins cannot contain the new wine.

So that’s why last Sunday, we did a “classics” set – a set of enduring songs from the last 20 to 30 years of the praise and worship movement; songs that most of us who have been in the church for a long time would have grown up with; songs that have shaped the worship landscape and paved the way for what God is doing today.

It was also a way for us educate the younger generation to help them understand where they came from and the sacrifices the older generation have made so that we can worship the way we do today.

What constitutes a “classic” of course is difficult to define.

In the end, we left it to our worship pastor to craft the song list. Even though Ps Dave Wong is only 26 years old, he practically grew up in Faith Community Church and so was completely immersed in the songs of the church over the last 20 years. If anyone had authority to speak to the “classics”, it was him.

The song list was:

  • Jesus You are So Good (F) – Jamie Harvill
  • God is Good All The Time (F) – Paul Overstreet and Don Moen
  • For All You’ve Done (F) – Reuben Morgan
  • When I Survey the Wondrous Cross (F-G) – Isaac Watts
  • I Give You My Heart (G) – Reuben Morgan
  • Majesty (G) – Jack Hayford
  • He is Exalted (G) – Twila Paris

There were many, many songs that missed the cut, perhaps paving the way for another Classics Sunday next year.

Here is a recording of the session: 

We were blessed with an amazing team, which included a guest appearance from our old friend Luke Tan on electric guitar.

The team was:

Worship leaders/Vocals: Dave Wong, Susan Cai, Sunray Zheng, Lydia Ling, me
Music Director/Bass: Addie Choon
Drums: Caleb Leong
Electric Guitars: Luke Tan, Joash Ang
Acoustic Guitar: Dave Wong
Keyboards: Samuel Ng, Su-Ern Lee
Cello: Tiffany Foo
Sound: Samuel Oh and Liimei Lim

There was quite an intense moment during “I Give You My Heart” as we recalled how, over the years, many of us would have rushed to the altar to that song. Much of the church was on their knees. And we experienced a beautiful time of consecration.

After the worship time, Dr Dan Mo gave a stirring message on “Catalysts of Revival”. When he gave the altar call, half the church stood up and flooded the altar. In my five years at Faith Community Church, I have not seen anything quite like it. Many cried hot tears as we committed ourselves to be world changers and history makers.

It was a significant Sunday.

We have reached back into history to give us an impetus for the future. May revival fire fall once again!

(Photo credit: Shane Wee)

Podcast: Never Before, Never Again

In the last couple of weeks at Faith Community Church, there has been a strong revival atmosphere.

It started on 16 July 2017 when Rev Bill Wilson of Metro World Child preached at our church on the subject “What Do You See?” Many were challenged to become what Rev Wilson calls “100 degree” Christians – to get to that point in our faith where everything changes.

Stories started coming from members of the congregation who were deeply impacted. I heard of one person who made a life-changing ministry decision. Another person was burdened to start a ministry to bring wheelchairs to a third-world country (and within a week, he managed to source some from charities). And all of this from an encounter with God in a one-and-a-half hour church service.

I have always believed that “just one word from God” would be enough to change a person or a situation entirely. However, I don’t think I’ve really seen it hit so close to home until now.

Throughout the different zones of our church, a prayerful hunger had been fomenting for some time. Even in our worship ministry, after three years of solidly building on our technical skills so we could faithfully steward our giftings, our worship pastor Dave Wong completely changed tack at the beginning of this year with a challenge to the team to hunger after God’s presence.

As a result, our worship services started to take on an entirely different complexion.

Last week, 23 July 2017, I had the honour of preaching at church as we began our “Revival” series.

The key plank of my message was from Josiah 23:25:

Neither before nor after Josiah was there a king like him who turned to the Lord as he did – with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with the Law of Moses.

If we are going to see revival in our generation, we must also be the generation to turn to God desperately, as if everything depended on it.

Despite all that had been done in the past 20 years of the history of our church, may there never be a generation like ours who would turn to God like we did. And never again, will there be a generation like this one.

I really sense that we are in an extraordinary season now in our church. Conditions are ripe for God’s Spirit to move like we’ve never seen.

Our cry is like that of Habakkuk, “Lord, we have heard of your fame; we stand in awe of Your wonderful deeds. Renew them in our day; in our time make them known!” Amen.

You can listen to the recording here: 

Photo Credit: Faith Community Church

From the Archives: Worship’s Dirtiest Word

Tonight, our worship team is running a round of auditions and it reminded me of this post. In fact, when I look back over the year, I’m really proud of how far how worship ministry has come in putting in more effort into expressiveness and harnessing the power of performance. 

In recent posts, I have been ruminating about worship auditions. Over the years, worship ministries have accepted auditions as a completely legitimate way to vet and induct new candidates into the ministry.

But whenever you talk about auditions, you also bring up another concept, which to mention in the context of worship is virtually taboo. It is one of worship’s dirtiest words. It may not be the dirtiest, but it certainly is up there. So, please promise me that, after you read this post, you will go into your prayer closet and ask for forgiveness for even entertaining the thought (actually, “entertain” is also a bad word, so pray for forgiveness twice!)

Used in any other context, the word causes absolutely no offence. In fact, it has a neutral to positive connotation. Used in the context of worship however, it is downright obscene.
That word is “performance”.

It is such a provocative word that, in fact, the July/August 2012 edition of Worship Leader magazine devotes itself to what the editor calls “an ancient controversy”.

The question is this: should performance be part of worship leading?

Ask me that question 10 years ago and I would have given you a very different answer to what I would give you today.

The church’s aversion to performance in worship leading can be traced to how those of us who have been in worship ministry for a long time were trained and brought up. We were told to “let no flesh glory in God’s presence”. Performance is therefore “fleshly” and therefore “not of the spirit”. And true worshippers must worship “in spirit and in truth”.
In an article published years ago entitled “Worship vs Performance” (I can’t find its source now), Kelly Carpenter (a Vineyard worship leader and composer of “Draw Me Close to You”) said this:

Worship is not performance. Performance is not worship. They are mutually exclusive. If we keep that straight, then we will be able to properly give God His due. Problems develop when we turn worship into a performance. When we bring the performance mindset and pattern into worship, it becomes polluted.

Over time, my mindset has changed. I no longer think that worship and performance are exclusive. I believe that for a worship leader to truly lead worship, they must actually bring an element of performance into their craft. This requires musical excellence, the ability to connect and engage the congregation, appropriate articulation of instructions and exhortations and being able to pray inspiring prayers.

To what end? If this is to bring attention to ourselves as worship ministers, then we’ve probably missed the point. But we equally miss the point if we don’t “perform” and by failing to “perform”, we fail to inspire the congregation to bring their best praise offering to God.

This is not to say that the ultimate audience of our worship isn’t God. Worship leaders should understand this point well. But, without derogating from that principle, worship leaders also need to (whether they like it or not) appreciate that there is a secondary audience – the congregation. This is of course not ideal but you just need to look at how we set up our worship in churches all around the world week-in and week-out to know that this is true. There is a stage; the stage is raised; the seating arrangements have the stage as a focal point; and the lights point towards the stage. What are we all looking at? I can tell you now that God is not on stage (at least not visibly).

The only visible people on stage are the worship musicians!

Until we get rid of this set-up, we can’t deny that performance will play an important part of our worship leading.

When I lead worship in cell group (where we usually gather in a circle), I use a different approach to worship leading to how I would lead in a Sunday service. For example, I gravitate towards simpler, more melodic songs. I use different language. I tend to speak as someone within the company of gathered worshippers, rather than someone in front of them. I am usually more laid-back and my tone is more relaxed.

When I lead worship in a Sunday service, I appreciate that not everyone in the church knows me like my cell group nor do I know them like I do my cell group. I need to be more exacting in my use of language; I need to craft my prayers more deliberately; I need to make sure that I use the 25 minutes with which I am entrusted to bring as many people in the congregation to a place of encounter with God.

I had a friend years ago who used to lead worship in cell group as he would on the platform. So he’d stand there (in front of all 8 of us), put on a faux American accent (because back then, all the good worship albums came from the USA) and give the most rousing performance he could muster. We were able to move past it all and worship anyway, and we’d tease him later and laugh about it. But he probably didn’t need to impress us so much in a cell group setting.

So why are we so averse to performance anyway?

Musicologist Monique Ingalls says this in her article “Reclaiming Performance in Worship” (Worship Leader, July/Aug 2012):
We often use the word ‘performance’ to describe what happens when someone acts in a way that is inconsistent with the way they really feel or the way they are in ‘real life’. We impute questionable motives to their actions: ‘performers’ in this sense act with an intention to deceive or manipulate, like an actor adopting a persona.

Next, Ingalls continues:

In the context of congregational worship, ‘performance’ is used to negatively describe what happens when the focus is placed on the musicians onstage (‘performers’) while the congregation (‘audience’) remains passive and uninvolved.

Recognising the cause of our aversion is part of the way towards our healing. When we actually analyse those two causes, we come to realise that (1) when worship leaders perform, they aren’t necessarily being fake or manipulative; and (2) our performance isn’t to negate the congregation’s involvement in worship, but rather to inspire and enhance that involvement. In fact, I believe that a worship leader must perform well if they are to faithfully steward their anointing.

And I’m glad to say that in recent years, the church has begun to embrace “performance” as a legitimate skill to be deployed by worship leaders. Very much in the same way that we would like our preachers to be interesting and engaging.

Paul Baloche, in his article “A Leading Worship Performance” (Worship Leader, Jul/Aug 2012) says that musically preparing is important because it will “greatly affect the participation of the congregation”. Baloche goes on to say:

We have to acknowledge that leading worship has aspects of performance. It’s naive or dishonest to pretend there is no element of performance when we walk out onto a platform or stage in front of others.

In an interview with Israel Houghton in the same issue of Worship Leader magazine, Houghton talks about a big Easter event that Lakewood Church had put on:

We poured great effort into how the songs wold be structured, how we were going to go about it, we planned this big drum feature thing. I asked our team, ‘What if we did that every week?’ Just put it all out there every single week? Some would see that as the wrong kind of performance, but I would see it as caring for the people that are coming to hear from God.”

Properly motivated, performance is a powerful thing. As Houghton might say, if we want to honour God and if we care about our congregations, then we’d better put some effort into our craft and our delivery. Not because we want to bring glory to ourselves. Not because we seek the adulation of others. But because, as worship leaders who pastor our congregation into God’s presence, we want to maximise participation both in breadth (in the numbers of people who worship) and in depth (in terms of the quality of their encounter with God).

Maybe the worship team should think of themselves as the “support act” (oops, ‘act’ is probably another dirty word!). When God’s presence comes (the main event), we will get out of the way and join back with rest of the congregation in giving our praise and adulation to the audience of One.

Week 5 Chronicles: Gospel Sunday

In our church, we try an experimental worship format once every quarter, during a month when there are 5 Sundays, to push the envelope  of how we do worship; to add freshness; and to teach the church that worship should be embraced in all its expressions.

I love Gospel music. I love it because it is simple. In a worship landscape when lyric, metaphor and melody are becoming more complex, it is good to return to repetition and predictability. But beyond this, Gospel music is music that moves its listeners. It reverberates through the soul. It is heart-felt. It is impossible to sing Gospel and not put in all your emotions. You can’t listen to Gospel and not move to its groove.

Last Sunday, we invited Stephanie Truscott to lead Gospel worship at Faith Community Church.

It was the first time we had dedicated the worship service to the Gospel genre, and it was probably the first time that many of us on the band had actually played an entire set in the Gospel style.

Some years ago, I had the honour of singing with Stephanie in her ensemble, Stephanie Truscott and the Garments of Praise. (Stephanie had been a pioneer in the worship movement in Perth, having led worship at Church Together, March for Jesus and worship conferences, and also trained and inspired many worship leaders and singers in the city).

The group was made up of singers from different churches and backgrounds who loved to sing Gospel.

Over the two years I sang with Stephanie, we had the opportunity to sing at public events such as Telethon, Multicultural Week festivals, Gospel Festivals and church services. But we also had the opportunity to perform in more intimate settings such as hospitals, nursing homes and detention centres. I began to discover how Gospel music, specifically, was able to penetrate areas of society that the Church was otherwise unable to reach.

This fact was brought home to me when I went on a mission trip to Japan in 2007. Whilst there, I had discovered that there was a Gospel singing group that met weekly to sing together, even though many of those who belonged to the group were unchurched. Yet, they were quite unwittingly singing potent prayers such as “Holy Spirit, fall afresh on me.” And I wondered just when God would answer such a prayer.

So, a few months back, I proposed to my worship pastor that we should do a Gospel Sunday.

The challenge was that the simplicity of Gospel melody belied the level of skill required, both from the musicians and singers. Many of the chords used in Gospel songs, for example, had fallen into disuse in the modern worship era and therefore out of the repertoire of most contemporary church musicians. Doing Gospel worship was not just to expose our congregation to something different, but also to stretch the skills of our musicians.

We rehearsed four times with Stephanie to deliver a 30-minute set. I still remember our first rehearsal about a month ago when Sam, our lead keyboardist, curled up in the foetal position after trying to play the first song. To his credit, he went back home and worked it all out and before long, he was comfortably hitting all the black notes.

It also meant that our singers had to sing differently – with more power, tightness and blend.

In the end, as daunting as it was, I am glad to say that our team managed to pull it off, not before being significantly challenged (except for Dave who is just naturally talented and capable).

The result was a Sunday worship service brimming with energy. Our congregation sang with all their might, clapping and moving along with the praise songs, and singing with affection as we moved into the slower songs. And God showed up!

Many were touched, with one member of the congregation reporting that their mother was still in tears over lunch, having felt the strong sense of God’s presence during the service.

Here’s the setlist:

// I Go to the Rock (D)

// There’s Power in the Blood (D-E)

// Every Praise (D-E-F)

// Great is Thy Faithfulness (C)

// I Give Myself Away (C-D)

// How Great is Our God (G)

// How Great Thou Art (G)

// Victor’s Crown (C)

For those who missed it or who want to relive the moment, here is the recording from Sunday.

(Photo credits: Faith Community Church)

Worship Sunday 2016

Worship, even at its most subliminal, is at the core of Christian discipleship and the purpose of the church. It must be because worship is about giving God utmost priority.

Tozer once said:

Worship of the loving God is man’s whole reason for existence. That is why we are born and that is why we are born again from above. That is why we were created and that is why we have been recreated. That is why there was a genesis at the beginning, and that is why there is a re-genesis, called regeneration.

That is also why there is a church. The Christian church exists to worship God first of all. Everything else must come second or third or fourth or fifth.

I am really blessed to be a part of a church that believes not only in expressing worship, but also bringing it to the forefront of our overt consciousness.

Over the last month, Faith Community Church devoted three entire weeks to the teaching and application of the theology of worship. I had the honour of preaching the first message in the series, The Priests We Were Destined to Be. Pastor Dave Wong then preached the second message on The Power of a Praising Heart.

The series culminated in Worship Sunday, which took place last Sunday – an entire church service devoted to worship.

We decided to run the service as four movements, each beginning with a monologue by a worship leader exemplifying a particular theme of worship. And, rather than just singing for one and a half hours, each movement featured its own unique posture and praise expression.

Here is how the service played out.

Introduction

Scripture reading: Psalm 97:1-10

WorshipSunday16-4

Dance item performed by banner team:  “I Exalt Thee” (E-F-G)

What was significant about the dance item was that it was a prophetic symbol of God’s restoration of the family altar, as three generations of a family, led by the grandmother, danced together in worship.

Movement 1: Worship celebrates with exuberant praise

WorshipSunday-9

Monologue by Dave

Endless Praise (A)

Alive (C)

Movement 2: Worship is magnified by His grace

WorshipSunday16-5

Monologue by Lydia

Broken Vessels (G)

O Praise the Name (Anastasis) (A)

Holy Communion

Exhortation by Ps Jon Quay

Song Item: How Deep the Father’s Love for Us (D) with contemporary dance by Stephanie Khoo

The eucharist

Movement 3: Worship calls us to intimacy

WorshipSunday16-6

Monologue by Sunray

Sinking Deep (D)

Scripture readings ministering God’s love

I Lay Me Down (A) Kneeling in worship

WorshipSunday16-7

Offering

Christ is Enough (A) with dance

Movement 4: Worship exalts a sovereign God

WorshipSunday16-3

Monologue by Lester

No Other Name (E) Corporate prayer for the nations

Spontaneous prophetic word and response

Hosanna (E-F-G-A)

Benediction by Pastor Benny Ho

WorshipSunday16-10

Pastor Benny reminded us from James 1:26,27 that after the service ends and we leave the building, true worship is lived out by our having a controlled tongue, a caring heart and a consecrated life.

It was a remarkable Sunday, one which I think many of us will remember for a long time to come; a Sunday which has really lifted the watermark of worship in the church; where the ceiling has now become the floor of the next level.

I am so grateful to serve with the amazing team of musicians who facilitated the service, the dancers, stage designers, lighting and AV team.

WorshipSunday16-11

Back row: Addie Choon (MD/bass), Joash Ang (electric guitar), Caleb Leong (drums), Ps Dave Wong (worship leader/acoustic guitar), Tae Kim (vocals), Ansen Soon (sound), Sam Ng (keyboard), me (worship leader)

Front row: Sunray Zheng (worship leader), Luke Tan (electric guitar), Delany See (keyboard), Lydia Ling (worship leader)

Here is the text of my monologue “Worship Exalts a Sovereign God”

Even as we have leaned in
And intimately encountered a God of love, grace and mercy,
We experience a simultaneous outward compulsion
To take this love, grace and mercy
To the ends of the earth.

As the eyes of the prophet Isaiah saw the Lord
Seated on the throne
His heart was gripped by the question:
“Who would go for Us?”

True worship emanates from a heart surrendered to God
But resonates, beats in rhythm with
His intense desire and longing that none should perish.

We encounter His love in worship gathered,
We carry His grace and presence in worship scattered;
We are transformed in worship gathered,
We transform our world in worship scattered;
We are discipled in worship gathered,
We disciple nations in worship scattered.

The Psalmist says
God’s love is meteoric
His loyalty astronomic
His purpose titanic
His verdicts oceanic
Yet in His largeness
Nothing gets lost
No one gets lost

In this world so tumultuous
Full of fear, hatred, violence, killing and death
We have a God who is still sitting on the throne
Who reigns over all things
Who has been given the name over all names

Fire still goes before Him
Mountains melt like wax at the sound of His voice
The haughtiest of hearts are humbled by His greatness
Kings cast their crowns at the sight of His majesty and splendour

Our God is still on the throne!

And one day
The kingdoms of this world
Will become the kingdom of our Lord and King
And He will reign forever and ever!

Let’s together in worship exalt our sovereign God,
Lift up your eyes church
He is our King of Kings and our Lord of Lords!

Here is the recording of the service in three parts.

Part 1

 

Part 2

 

Part 3

May you be inspired to take your personal worship to the next level!

Photo credits: Joseph Siew

Podcast: The Priests We Were Destined To Be

Preaching

I had the privilege of preaching last Sunday 24 July 2016 at my home church, Faith Community Church.

It was the first time I had preached from such a hallowed pulpit. It was daunting because (and perhaps I am a bit biased here) some of the best preachers in town live here! Like Pastor Benny Ho (one of the best expository teachers I’ve ever heard), Jon Quay (youth minister extraordinaire) and Dr Dan Mo (who can preach a sermon without notes and quote large chunks of Scripture verbatim).

But the congregation was really encouraging, with many people sending me encouraging texts even as I was preparing.

In the end, I think the message went pretty well.

Some of you have been asking me to share the recording, so here it is. I hope it blesses you.