To Sing or Not To Sing Christmas Carols is Not the Question

Do we sing Christmas carols because they are good songs for worship or because we always sing them? After last Sunday's services I received a note requesting that I add some of the Christmas carols to the services over the next few weeks. The service plans for the next few weeks are completed and there are plenty of the traditional Christmas hymns included in the plans.

However, the note got me thinking, do we sing the Christmas carols for the right reason?

Yes, they do celebrate the birth of our savior. Yes, they do remind us of the 'perfect gift'.

But if we sing only the carols we miss a lot of the story that has been written since the beginning of time.

In Christ-centered worship, no matter the season, we are to remember all God is and all that He has done for us through His Son and Spirit.

Planning worship services is our chance to re-tell God's story and gives us the chance to engage in the story through worship.

Last Sunday we did sing songs remembering the season, but also songs that reminded us of the 'rest of the story.'

Here is our setlist

Pre-service/Gathering Song You Alone Can Rescue by Matt Redman and Jonas Myrin

Spoken Service Introduction

The signs of Christmas are all around us. There is anticipation in the air and children are counting down the days til Christmas morning. They can hardly stand the wait.

That wait can not be compared to what the people of God experienced as they waited for the Messiah to come to earth. Their wait was hundreds of years.

Today is the second Sunday of Advent...(the four Sundays proceeding Christmas day)

On the Sundays of Advent we often sing songs that remind us and reflect on the wait for the Messiah. The text usually centered around scriptures like:

In Isaish 7:14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive, have a son and name him Immanuel.

We no longer have to wait but it is good to sing songs of Advent because these songs become a testimony of God's faithfulness. He promised a Messiah, His Son and He came.

Will you please stand and sing with me.

Songs and Scriptures O Come O Come Emmanuel Isaiah 9:6-7 And His Name by Tommy Waler How Deep the Father's Love For Us by Stuart Townend

Welcome

Song and Scripture The Greatness of Our God by Jason Ingram, Reuben Morgan, Stuart David Garrard Romans 8:31-39 (as responsive reading. We did not instruct our people to read we just started with indication of who was to read proceeding each section.) The Greatness of Our God (reprise)

Sermon Luke 15:1-10

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This post is my participation in the blog carnival Sunday Setlists which can be found at The Worship Community.