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Christian Music

Hymnal, Book, Sing, Music, Faith, Christian, God

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So I was having a conversation with my sister in the car about what makes a song “Christian.” I mentioned that even though many songs have Christian themes in them, they aren’t all considered “Christian music” or won’t be played on Christian radio stations such as KLOVE. As we discussed it, we came up with three categories of songs.

First off there is the general category of Songs with Christian Themes. This is the broadest category and each of the categories I mention next would also fit into this one. Any song that has Christian themes, whether it’s from a Christian or secular band can fit into this category. All types of music: country, rock, pop and whatever else, would all be included. Any song that could be seen as having a Christian element is in. So songs like “Three Wooden Crosses” by Randy Travis or “Sinners Like Me” by Eric Church or even “I Will Wait” by Mumford and Sons could all be seen as having Christian themes. Though you probably wouldn’t ever sing these songs in a church, they still can glorify God and many people enjoy them.

The next category I would call Pop Christian Music. This includes music that you would hear on Christian radio stations and include artists like Toby Mac, Big Daddy Weave and For King and Country. These songs are intentionally uplifting and focus on God, though many of them can sound similar to other secular pop music. Though fun to listen to, there are many songs that you wouldn’t necessarily sing in church either, such as “Grace Wins” by Matthew West or “Made to Love” by Toby Mac. Some songs are just harder for an entire audience to join in singing with and have rhythms that are harder for a congregation to pick up on.

That brings us to the last category of Worship Music. This includes all of the rich history of church hymns along with the more recent popular music that can be sung in a congregational setting. Though each church may have it’s own preferences for music and not include some of these songs on what they want to play on a Sunday morning, many churches do use them. At my own church we’ve sung old hymns such as “Come Thou Fount” and “Amazing Grace” and newer songs like Hillsong’s “Oceans” and “Wholly Yours” by David Crowder Band.

But whatever you choose to listen to, it can all point you to the One worth praising, the One who made music in the first place and is worth singing about.

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A Church Family

Schoolhouse, School, Education, Building, Learn

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I’ve been thinking recently about my church and I wanted to share some thoughts.

Here’s a starter question. On a Sunday morning, would you rather go to some event or entertainment venue for half price, or go to church?

Recently I had a friend suggest that I should go to an entertainment venue on Sunday morning because it was half price. I didn’t say yes or no at the time, I just listened to the suggestion.

As I see it, you could have three different responses to this question. 1. You could say, “Yeah I’d like the half price coupon.” 2. You could say “Well I should probably go to church, but that sounds fun.” 3. Or you could say, “Miss Church? No way! I wouldn’t miss this for anything!”

Now I don’t know where you would fall on the scale, but I lean towards the third option. I hardly ever miss church, and not just because I feel like I’m supposed to go there and will feel guilty if I don’t. I go, because I want to. I get to see my good friends, be encouraged and prayed for, and hear about the great things God is doing in our congregation. It is a sweet time, with my family. And I really would call the members of my church my family.

Fun, Happy, People, Happiness, Joy, Happy People

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When I step into the school building where we meet, it feels like coming home, I get hugs, smiles, and “How are you’s?” and it lifts my spirits. If I had a bad week, I can tell someone about it, if I had a great one, I can share that too.

I read a blog post recently about a church’s first impression. The post mentioned if the technical equipment works, if everyone knows the songs, or if the preaching was thought out and well prepared.

I get all that, and it is important. But more so, I think what really matters in a church, and really makes the best first impression, is when someone actually says hello to you, shakes your hand, maybe gives you a hug and asks how you are. That’s what family does.

Now maybe your church doesn’t feel much like family, maybe you want to slip in and slip back out without getting noticed or talking to anyone. But that is not what Jesus intended for His church. The church is His body, and it needs to be connected in order to function.

So I would encourage you, if you attend church, to start treating the people there more like family. Say “hi,” ask how you can be praying for the person sitting next to you, and maybe even take someone out to eat after church and get to know them better.

Well that’s my thoughts for the day. Let me know what you think.

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