Thursday, January 22, 2015

an inspiring contemporary Christian song for Catholics: Abandon's It Was Love

Was Jesus human or divine when He was on the cross? This song explores that and comes to conclusion that "it was love" that held Him to the cross. He felt pain because He was fully human, and He made the choice to stay on the cross of our salvation because he is God. 
lyrics to It was Love
The angel stood in awe
At the sight they saw
The night You were betrayed
You could have saved yourself
But you held back the heavens
And let them carry You away

You laid Your kingdom down, they handed you a crown of thorns- You were torn, but cried let Your will be done

It wasn't nails that held You to the cross It was love, it was love, it was Your love- You took our place, carried our guilt and shame All for us, all for us, all for us It wasn't nails that held You, it was love

To think You chose this cup knowing all that was to come
Oh the grace that poured from You
Before Your final breath through Your tears You said
"Forgive them, for they know not what they do."
You looked up to the sky-- Let out a final cry
It is done! Hope has won! Lord, let Your kingdom come!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

an inspiring contemporary Christian song for Catholics: For King&Country's Proof of Your Love

Yes, dear reader, I have to stifle a cringe when the song leader wants us to turn to page 123 and sing Gather Us In or Lord of the Dance at Mass. Why are we stuck in 1982? Church started years before that- none of the older music is worthwhile to remember? 
In the church, awaiting the holy sacrifice, we should be reverent, solemn.If we truly believe what the priest is going to do, there is not a place for 1982-style strange theology. But there is a place for praise. 
The Byzantine style is traditional, and we frown on innovation because innovation sometimes can lead to theological missteps like Gather Us In. We will sing the old songs over and over. Anything new is probably really an old song that the cantor recently discovered while attending a service in the old country. I prefer it this way within the church, but we might be making a mistake in that we are throwing the baby out with the bath water.
In a Byzantine service, we would never sing the song above, but we can learn from their fervor and the beautiful theology in the words. Listening to songs like these- and also more traditional audio like listening to the rosary or chant- help me get through another long drive in traffic. This song could be a great way to inspire a prayer time. We traditional, liturgical types can sometimes forget that there really is a place for a more charismatic communication with God even if we are not be this way during a religious service in church. 
This song convicts me. Like we say before we receive the Eucharist at the Divine Liturgy- in my life, I am the "greatest sinner"- let my life not be a scandal and a stumbling block to those who are searching for God in His Church.

Proof of Your Love lyrics   

If I sing but don't have love, I waste my breath with every song
I bring an empty voice, a hollow noise
If I speak with the silver tongue and convince a crowd but don't have love
I leave a bitter taste with every word I say

So let my life be the proof of Your love
So let my love look like You and what Your made of
How You lived, how You died
Love is sacrifice
So let my life be the proof, The proof of Your love

If I give to a needy soul but don't have love then who is poor?
It seems all the poverty is found in me

When it's all said and done-- When we sing our final song
Only love remains-- Only love remains

If I can speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy
But don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rust gate
If I speak God’s word with power, revealing all of His mysteries
And making everything as plain as day
And if I have faith to say to a mountain jump and it jumps
But I don’t love, I’m nothing
If I give all I earn to the poor or even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr
But I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere
So, no matter what I say, no matter what I believe, no matter what I do
I’m bankrupt without love--- 1 Corinthians 13:1-3

Monday, January 19, 2015

an inspiring contemporary Christian song for Catholics: Lauren Daigle's 'How Can It Be'

We listen to only Christian pop music and classical in the car. Some Christians turn up their noses at CCM, thinking that music can, and should, be Christian- beautiful and truthful- without being so, well, obvious about it. These are the same type of people that believes that LOTR and The Hobbit are too sentimental.
I disagree. While there is plenty of room for art to be non-obvious in its Christianity and pursuit of beauty and truth without actually being theologically crystal clear (Madeleine L'engle's books, Mumford & Sons' songs, Tony Pro's portraits), there is even more space for art and media to shout from the roof-tops- Jesus Christ is Lord!
This song is a favorite. For a Catholic, it could be sung after the beautiful sacrament of confession. Jesus told His apostles that they had the power to bind and loose of earth and that it would remain bound and loosed in heaven. Grace and mercy are waiting in the sacrament of confession/reconciliation
Isn't it wonderful that our informed conscience can inspire us to make things right with God?I cannot understand it when the Church is made fun of- 'Catholic guilt.' Maybe my convert-ness is showing, but shouldn't we feel bad if we do something we know is wrong? If I sin, I am glad I feel guilt! If I didn't feel shame, I am either ignorant, proud to sin being very far from God or, at worst, a sociopath! The sacrament of confession is a wonderful tool for Catholics to get closer to God and .
lyrics to 'How Can It Be'
I am guilty
Ashamed of what I've done, what I've become
These hands are dirty
I dare not lift them up to the Holy one

You plead my cause
You right my wrongs
You break my chains
You overcome
You gave Your life
To give me mine
You say that I am free
How can it be
How can it be

I've been hiding
Afraid I've let you down, inside I doubt
That You still love me
But in Your eyes there's only grace now

Though I fall, You can make me new
From this death I will rise with You
Oh the grace reaching out for me
How can it be
How can it be

Thursday, January 15, 2015

books he got for Christmas- 7 quick takes

It has been slow going this January...I had such plans to blog more frequently! Ah, me- those who fail to plan, plan to fail....In any case, this is my first 'quick takes' that is hosted by 'This ain't the Lyceum,' and I still have Christmas on the mind. Here's what priest-husband is reading: (affiliate links)

1. A Christian Ending by Mark & Elizabeth Barna- a handbook for burial in the ancient Christian tradition also answering the question- How should Christian people prepare for death, their own and that of loved ones? No question can be more important than this, since death is the final reality of our earthly life. This should be useful and educational for his ministry.

2. Thirty Steps to Heaven: The Ladder of Divine Ascent for All Walks of Life- we might have to fight over who reads this first. hmm...fighting over a religious book doesn't seem very holy, does it? I love books like this- it seems like it will be an Eastern take on day to day holiness much like St Francis de Sales, Introduction to the Devout Life.
3. In Defense of Sanity: The Best Essays of G K Chesterton. It can be hard to commit to a long, serious theological and philosophical work, knowing there really isn't time in the day. Essays and short stories (Thurber and Bradbury being favorites of mine, even if they aren't always theological...) are where we are. Click over and just read the table of contents. Chesterton is a master.
4. When the Church was Young: Voices of the Early Fathers by Marcellino d'Ambrosio- Here is another great book that father is already using as a part of his ministry. It is extra special because D'Ambrosio was a professor of his during his Master's program. Although it is a historical and theological work, I believe this book will be accessible to any reader who is open to learning more about the early Church.
5. Practical Theology: Spiritual Direction from St Thomas Aquinas edited and with commentary by Peter Kreeft will be used daily in this house! When father was going through seminary, he was prepared to be a parish priest in Romania with tasks to perform as well in his bishop's office because of his knowledge of French and English. Times have changed! Not only is he working in hospital ministry daily, he works with police as well. Spiritual direction and counseling is becoming more and more a part of his ministry.I think this book will be helpful.
6. and if you were concerned that we are getting too solemn...he enjoyed Dad is Fat by Jim Gaffigan. First, he had to steal it back from the 15-year old.
7. and some music...Music from The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings performed by the City of Prague Philharmonic. I haven't mentioned it on this blog, but we moved locally between Thanksgiving and Christmas (yes...crazy, busy times!). We are renting a larger house and renting out our townhouse. And we named the rental house The Prancing Pony. We don't expect any nazguls, but we want it to be a place of hospitality, cheer and good food for everyone else- hobbits, elves and dwarves.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...