I serve a risen Savior; He’s in the world today.

April 24, 2011 at 6:10 pm 2 comments

God sent His son, they called Him Jesus; 
He came to love, heal and forgive.
He lived and died to buy my pardon,
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives!

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives, all fear is gone.
Because I know (oh-oh) He holds the future
And life is worth the living, just because He lives!

We attend a large church.  The largest church in our city, I think.  In larger cities it would probably be considered just a mid-sized house of worship; in Doo-Dah it’s a mega-church.

Mega-church has an excellent music program.  A large choir on Sundays, accompanied by a full, 20+ piece orchestra.  A contemporary praise band for Saturday nights.  A wealth of vocal talent.  There are several singers and groups that could hold their own on any music competition program found around the dial.

I serve a risen Savior; He’s in the world today.
I know that He is living, whatever men may say.
I see His hand of mercy, I hear His voice of cheer.
And just the time I need Him, He’s always near.

He lives!  He lives!  Christ Jesus lives today!
He walks with me and talks with me along life’s narrow way.
He lives!  He lives!  Salvation to impart!
You ask me how I know he lives – He lives within my heart. 

Every week we sing the latest praise songs heard on K-Love and Way FM.  The lights are coordinated with the music.  Lyrics are posted on one of the four screens placed around the Worship Center.  The up-tempo songs are loud, the mellower songs are worshipful.  It is all constructed to not only set the mood for worship but also to entertain.  Some days it’s more like attending a concert than church.

I enjoy the music.  I like the praise songs and I appreciate the talent.  But sometimes, this small-town Kansas girl raised in a small Methodist church misses the traditional hymns.  Especially on Easter Sunday.

Christ the Lord is risen today.  Aaaaaaaaah-lleluia.
Earth and heaven in chorus say.  Aaaaaaaaah-lleluia.
Raise your joys and triumphs high!  Aaaaaaaah-lleluia.
Sing, ye heavens and earth reply!  Aaaaaaaaaaaaahh-lleluia!!!

I love the words.  I love the melodies.  I love reading the music and the lyrics directly from the hymnals.  I appreciate the simplicity of a bunch of untrained voices raising their praise, accompanied only by a piano.

Some of my favorite memories of church are standing in a pew, sandwiched between my parents, singing alto to the old hymns while my father leans in with the bass counterpoint and my mom sings the soprano melody.

Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o’er His foes,
He arose a Victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever, with His saints to reign.
He arose! He arose!
Hallelujah! Christ arose!

And while I heard Old Rugged Cross this morning at service, it just didn’t suffice.  So I have been having my own private concert at random moments today, trying to piece together the lyrics as I remember them.

I know that my children probably won’t know the old hymns.  They will have their own memories of church, memories that involve contemporary praise and worship songs.  That’s okay, but I want them to know at least a few of the old hymns.  That’s why I sing this one to Alissa every night.  Because it’s the crux of our faith.  It’s the reason we celebrate today.

On a hill far away, stood an old rugged cross
the emblem of suffering and shame.
And I love that old cross where the dearest and best
For a world of lost sinners was slain.

And I’ll cherish the old rugged cross,
‘Til my trophies at last I lay down.
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it some day for a crown. 


Entry filed under: Life in general.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Mom  |  April 25, 2011 at 6:49 am

    Amen! Just this morning as we were singing these old hymns, I thought of you and missed your beautiful voice chiming in with us. Happy Easter, Amy! I’m glad those memories will always be with you.

  • 2. rcottrill  |  October 26, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    Greetings from Wordwise Hymns. I commend you for wanting to teach hymns to your children. It concerns me when churches (and individuals) are so concerned to be “contemporary” that they leave our rich heritage of sacred music completely behind. Take the best of the new, but don’t forget the old. On my site, I’ve written the stories of about a thousand hymns. I hear from people all over the world that they greatly love this music. Keep up the good work!


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