Michael J Tinker has a new song out called “Jesus is the resurrection” for which I wrote the lyrics …
Now Martha knew the Lord could heal –
he was the only one.
But he came late to save his mate
and now her hope was gone.
Her brother Lazarus had died
and where was Christ her Lord?
She had no clue what he could do
through his almighty word.
Jesus is the resurrection,
Jesus is the, Jesus is the life.
When Mary came to meet the Lord,
her cheeks were wet with tears.
Her clothes were torn, her face forlorn,
her mind was filled with fears.
When Jesus saw her without hope
his heart was deeply stirred:
she had no clue what he could do
through his almighty word.
When Jesus stood before the grave
he gave a mighty shout.
And from the gloom within the tomb
the dead man wandered out!
And everyone was blown away
by what just had occurred:
for now they knew what he could do
through his almighty word.
You can buy it from Michael’s website: michaeljtinker.com/shop
or any of the following …
And here’s a song-along lyrics video …
Here’s a new song which I wrote with Phil Moore and Glen Scrivener. It’s loosely based on themes from John 4:13-14 and 4:34-38 (with a dash of Jeremiah 2:13).
Phil has recorded it for an Easter collection of songs on a CD with readings and a short talk by Glen. It’s been produced with 10ofThose and is designed to be given away to friends and neighbours as a way to share the gospel, especially among those who are unable to attend meetings. A CD costs £2.99 or you can buy multiple copies for as little as £1. It’s available here.
I was delighted to receive a copy of the New Psalter last week courtesy of Dan Kreider and Grace Music. It’s a collection of musical settings of the Psalms with at least one setting for every Psalm (including one for every section of Psalm 119). It comes in cloth bound and spiral bound versions as well as an online version (which presumably you can use under your CCLI licence).
My first impression on opening the parcel was that this is a thing of beauty – stitched and bound in red cloth with silver writing. It’s a delight to hold it and read it. It’s not the most important thing, perhaps, but I appreciate these things, especially in a book I’ll use on a regular basis. It’s a mystery to me how they can sell this for just $13.
The New Psalter is a great mix of old and new settings, ranging from strict metrical settings to freer settings – or, to put it another way, from the Scottish Psalter to the Gettys. There’s also a mix of new and familiar tunes – tunes most congregations will already know. Even the new tunes are mostly hymns with a regular metre that people should be able to pick up quickly.
Over the past few years we’ve included a Psalm (or more often a portion of the Psalm) in our Sunday gathering in some form. That might be in the call to worship or to preface our corporate confession. The New Psalter significantly expands those options, enabling congregations to sing the set Psalm each week. And what I love most about the New Psalter is that it offers a genuinely and readily sing-able version of every Psalm. It does deliver on the promise implicit in the subtitle: “Psalms for the Church”. In many cases the tune will already be familiar to a congregation.
I’ve also been using it in my personal devotions. I usually read a Psalm each morning and evening, and over the past few days I’ve been using the New Psalter to mix this up by singing some of them.
The spiral bound version has guitar chords (for those of us used to playing from lead sheets), though not the cloth bound version. The online version also offers the option of a PDF with guitar chords.
The good news is that Grace Music recently has started shipping to the UK (though it’s not cheap for small orders).
Finally, one bit of trivia. Every Psalm has at least one setting. Some have two or three, and few have more. But which Psalm do you think has the largest number of settings in this collection? Answer: Psalms 91 – with seven separate versions.
For more information go to: https://gracemusic.us/psalter/.
My latest book, An Ocean of Grace, is now available from all good booksellers. It’s a collection of daily prayers adapted from some of the greats of church history. It’s designed around Lent, but can be used at any time – both personally and corporately. Here’s the blurb …
An inspiring collection of daily devotions and prayers from great Christian writers of the past, including Augustine, Charles Spurgeon, John Bunyan, Catherine Parr and Martin Luther.
The heart-warming words of these saints of old exalt the grace and glory of Christ’s work, and will encourage and inspire readers as much today as they did when they were first written.
Each daily reading has been selected, edited and introduced by Tim Chester to make these treasures accessible to every reader. They will help you reflect on Jesus in the run-up to Easter. Ideal to start at the beginning of Lent.
And here are some commendations …
Alistair Begg (Bible Teacher, Truth For Life; Senior Pastor, Parkside Church, Cleveland, Ohio)
‘All our yesterdays,’ according to Shakespeare’s Macbeth, ‘have lighted fools the way to dusty death’. Not so, writes Tim Chester—instead we hear the voices of the past telling of the mighty works of God and helping us to fix our eyes on Jesus. Every page of this book is an opportunity to sit and learn at the feet of saints of old as Chester brilliantly guides us from the foot of the cross to the empty tomb. In An Ocean of Grace we discover one blessing after another.
Steven Lawson (President and Founder, OnePassion Ministries)
Voices from the past provide great encouragement in the present as we navigate our way into the future. In this devotional book, Tim Chester has drawn collected writings from those who have gone before to inspire us as we run the race set before us. Here are classic meditations designed to prepare our hearts for celebrating the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ at Easter. In these pages, I am certain you will find strength for your journey of faith.
Clare Heath-Whyte (Author, Old Wives Tales)
Lent is a great time to slow down and take time to think again about the events of the first Easter. This book helps us to do just that. After a typically clear and thoughtful introduction by Tim Chester, each day there is a treasure from a great Christian writer of the past. Each of these prayers, poems and mediations makes us slow down and take time as we get to grips with the richness of the language and the depth of thought, and allow these writers of old to bring us fresh insights into the wonders of the gospel.
Paul Mallard (Author; Pastor, Widcombe Baptist Church, UK)
We live in an age of superficiality and ‘chronological snobbery’, which tends to treat the past with disdain. This series of Lent readings is a wonderful antidote to the spirit of our age. From Gregory of Nazianzus to Catherine Parr and from George Herbert to Charles Spurgeon, we meet a galaxy of men and women whose lives were moulded by Scripture and lived out in fervent devotion to Christ. As you listen to these voices, your heart will blaze as each witness shows you Jesus. This book is highly recommended.
Kathleen Nielson (Author; Speaker)
This collection of prayers from the past is a gift that stands out in a world of quick and casual words. Tim Chester has provided a profoundly beautiful way to help lead the church in prayer during the Lenten season. The prayers of these men and women are not only saturated with biblical truth; they are also shaped with imagination that awakens us and love for Jesus that pierces our hearts.
Olly Knight (Musician, song-writer and Worship Team Leader, The City Church, Canterbury, UK)
When I read books like this, my desire is to learn more about Christ and to grow in my worship of him. This collection of prayers and writings from brothers and sisters that have gone before us does both. Each contribution serves as a wonderful daily devotion to lift your eyes to Christ. I thoroughly recommend this book.
You can buy An Ocean of Grace direct from The Good Book Company or from your favourite bookseller.
With the support of my elders, I have decided to take a sabbatical. The revelations of the hurt experienced by people during their time in The Crowded House have left me feeling broken and fragile. So I want to create some space for personal reflection and spiritual refreshment. I will honour my existing commitments as well as continuing to do some ministry in the local church and through Crosslands. But I will not be taking on new commitments or accepting new speaking engagements for 2021 or, at this stage, for beyond 2021.