Christmas Offering – 2008

This song was written by Paul Baloche, and was recorded by Casting Crowns… included on their Christmas album, Peace On Earth.

Paul Joseph Baloche (born on June 4, 1962) is an American Christian music artist, worship leader, and singer-songwriter. A native of Maple Shade Township, New Jersey, Baloche was the worship pastor at Community Christian Fellowship in Lindale, Texas for 26 years. Baloche composes on piano and acoustic guitar, favoring guitar when leading worship. His wife, Rita Baloche, is also a Christian songwriter. Baloche is one of the writers for Compassionart, a charity founded by Martin Smith from Delirious?.

Casting Crowns is a Contemporary Christian and Christian rock band started in 1999 by youth pastor Mark Hall, who serves as the band’s lead vocalist, as part of a youth group at First Baptist Church in Downtown Daytona Beach, Florida. They later moved to Stockbridge, Georgia, and more members joined. Some members of the band currently work as ministers for Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Georgia. The band has won a Grammy and a Dove Award.

This song focuses on the worship that surrounded the birth of Jesus.
Bible Reference… Deuteronomy 16:17; Psalm 4:5; 96:7-9; Malachi 3:8-12; Matthew 2:1-12; Mark 12:41-44; Luke 2:8-20; 21:1-4; Romans 12:12; 2Corinthians 9:7; Hebrews 13:15

Over the skies of Bethlehem appeared a star. While angels sang to lowly shepherds,
three wise men seeking truth… they traveled from afar.
Hoping to find the Child from Heaven, and falling on their knees,
they bow before the humble Prince of Peace.

        CHORUS:
        We bring an offering of worship to our King.
        No one on earth deserves the praises that we sing.
        Jesus, may You receive the honor that You’re due (the honor that You’re due).
        O Lord, I bring an offering to You.

The sun cannot compare to the glory of Your love; there is no shadow in Your presence.
No mortal man would dare to stand before Your throne, before the Holy One of Heaven
It’s only by Your blood, it’s only through Your mercy, Lord, I come. (2nd CHORUS)

        2nd CHORUS:
        I bring an offering of worship to my King.
        No one on earth deserves the praises that I sing.
        Jesus, may You receive the honor that You’re due (the honor that You’re due)
        O Lord, I bring an offering to You. (REPEAT)

        TAG:
        We bring an offering to You.
        We are an offering to You (an offering of praise we sing).
        (An offering to You) We are an offering to You, Jesus.
        (An offering, of praise we sing) (An offering to You) (We are an offering to You)
        We are an offering of worship to our King;
        no one on earth deserves the praises that we sing.
        Jesus, may You receive the honor that You’re due (the honor that You’re due).
        O Lord, we bring an offering to You; O Lord, we bring an offering.

Advertisements

God Is With Us – 2008

This song was written by Wayne Kirkpatrick, and was recorded by Casting Crowns… included on their Christmas album, Peace On Earth.

Wayne Kirkpatrick (born c. 1961) is an American songwriter and musician born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana but now lives in Nashville, Tennessee. He has spent most of his career in the background, often providing background vocals, playing guitar, playing keyboards or writing songs for other artists. Writing in Contemporary Christian, Country, and Pop styles, his songs have been recorded by some of the biggest names in each genre. At the 24th GMA Dove Awards, Kirkpatrick received the award for Producer of the Year.

Casting Crowns is a Contemporary Christian and Christian rock band started in 1999 by youth pastor Mark Hall, who serves as the band’s lead vocalist, as part of a youth group at First Baptist Church in Downtown Daytona Beach, Florida. They later moved to Stockbridge, Georgia, and more members joined. Some members of the band currently work as ministers for Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Georgia. The band has won a Grammy and a Dove Award.

This song reminds us what one of the titles given to Jesus would mean for us; Emmanuel – God with us – means just that. He is with anyone, anywhere, at any time… if they will ask Him to be.
Bible Reference… Isaiah 7:14; 41:10; Matthew 1:22,23

The skies don’t seem to be as dark as usual;
the stars seem brighter than they’ve been before.
Deep within, I feel my soul a-stirring as though my hope has been restored.

The shepherds say they’ve heard the voice of angels,
confirming rumors spread across the land
that a child protected well from Herod’s anger is our Father’s Son, and the Son of Man.

        CHORUS:
        Love is raining down on the world tonight; there’s a presence here… I can tell.
        God is in us, God is for us, God is with us… Emmanuel.
        He’s the Savior we have been praying for; in our humble hearts He will dwell.
        God is in us, God is for us, God is with us… Emmanuel.

I feel compelled to tell all who will listen, that peace on earth is not so out of reach.
If we can find grace, mercy and forgiveness, He has come to save; He is all of these.
(CHORUS 2x)

While You Were Sleeping – 2008

This song was written by Mark Hall, and was recorded by Casting Crowns… included on their Christmas album, Peace On Earth.

John Mark Hall (born September 14, 1969) is the lead vocalist for the Georgia-based Contemporary Christian music group, Casting Crowns, a 7-member group composed of worship leaders. Hall himself is also youth pastor at Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough.

Casting Crowns is a Contemporary Christian and Christian rock band started in 1999 by youth pastor Mark Hall, who serves as the band’s lead vocalist, as part of a youth group at First Baptist Church in Downtown Daytona Beach, Florida. They later moved to Stockbridge, Georgia, and more members joined. Some members of the band currently work as ministers for Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Georgia. The band has won a Grammy and a Dove Award.

This song looks at 3 geographical places: Bethlehem, Jerusalem, and America. Two of those places relate to His first Coming; the latter may relate to His 2nd Coming.
Bible Reference… Matthew 23:37-39; 24:42; Luke 2:1-7; 13:34,35; 19:28-38; 23:26-49; 1Thessalonians 5:1-3

Oh, little town of Bethlehem, looks like another silent night.
Above your deep and dreamless sleep, a giant star lights up the sky.
And, while you’re lying in the dark, there shines an everlasting Light;
for the King has left His throne and is sleeping in a manger tonight.
Oh, Bethlehem, what you have missed while you were sleeping…
for God became a man and stepped into your world today.
Oh, Bethlehem, you will go down in history as a city with no room for its King.
While you were sleeping… while you were sleeping.

Oh, little town of Jerusalem, looks like another silent night.
The Father gave His only Son; the Way, the Truth, the Life had come.
But, there was no room for Him in the world He came to save.
Jerusalem, what you have missed while you were sleeping;
the Savior of the world is dying on your cross today.
Jerusalem, you will go down in history as a city with no room for its King.
While you were sleeping… while you were sleeping.

United States of America, looks like another silent night,
as we’re sung to sleep by philosophies that save the trees and kill the children.
And while we’re lying in the dark, there’s a shout heard ‘cross the eastern sky;
for the Bridegroom has returned and has carried His Bride away in the night.
America, what will we miss while we are sleeping?
Will Jesus come again and leave us slumbering where we lay?
America, will we go down in history, as a nation with no room for its King?
Will we be sleeping? Will we be sleeping?

Come And See What’s Happenin’ In The Barn – 2007

This song was recorded by the Gaither Vocal Band (GVB)… included on their second Christmas album, Christmas Gaither Vocal Band Style.

The Gaither Vocal Band is an American southern gospel vocal group, named after its founder and leader Bill Gaither. Although the group started out recording contemporary Christian music in the 1980s, it became known for southern gospel after the popularity of the Gaither Homecoming videos.
The lineup of the band changes often, with artists leaving to work on solo careers, and new and old ones coming to replace them. This album’s roster consisted of Wes Hampton – tenor; Guy Penrod – lead; Marshall Hall – baritone; and Bill Gaither – bass.
The band has released 29 albums (not including compilations), at least 19 of which have charted. The band has also released 10 DVDs, which feature many other Christian artists as well. The Gaither Vocal Band has been honored with 2 Grammys and 17 Dove Awards.

This song is sung from the perspective of a fictional innkeeper in Bethlehem.
Bible Reference… Matthew 2:1,2; Luke 2:1-20
        CHORUS:
        Come and see what’s happenin’ in the barn!
        I’ve seen nothin’ like this since I’ve been on this farm!
        Those strangers that camped out there have a baby in their arms;
        come and see what’s happenin’ in the barn!

Must have been sometime `bout close to midnight,
a big ol’ guy came knockin’ at my door.
He said his wife was `bout to have a baby and she just couldn’t travel anymore.
I said the rooms had all been rented out, but they’d find shelter out there in the barn.
They could throw some blankets in the stable;
at least, they would be dry and safe from harm.

Sometime before dawn I was awakened; light was floodin’ through the windowpane.
A star as bright as moonlight was a shinin’, and pretty music I could not explain.
I ran downstairs to have a look around; I tell you I could not believe my eyes.
A crowd had gathered all around the manger,
and they were talkin’ `bout God’s big surprise.

The shepherds said that they’d been on the hillside, tellin’ stories just to stay awake;
the baby lambs were sleepin’ near the campfire,
the ewes were huddled by the stone fence gate.
And then the sky just seemed to open wide
with light and sound that they could hardly bear.
And what they swore were angels sang in chorus,
“You’ll find the new Messiah over there.”

        2nd CHORUS:
        Go and see what’s happening in the barn!
        There’s been nothin’ like it ever happened on this farm!
        The strangers that camped out there have a baby in their arms;
        Go and see what’s happenin’ in the barn!

Glorious Impossible – 2006

This song was written by Carl Cartee, Joe Beck, and Wendy Wills. It was recorded by the Gaither Vocal Band (GVB)… included on their album, Give It Away.

Carl and Heather Cartee are a husband and wife duo who have been making music together since the first time they met. A life long musician, Carl had already been playing concerts and recording music when they were married. Their ministry of leading worship, writing songs and mentoring musicians has taken them all over the world together.
Joe Beck (July 29, 1945 – July 22, 2008) was an American jazz guitarist who was active for over 30 years.
Wendy Wills is an acoustic based singer/songwriter.

The Gaither Vocal Band is an American southern gospel vocal group, named after its founder and leader Bill Gaither. Although the group started out recording contemporary Christian music in the 1980s, it became known for southern gospel after the popularity of the Gaither Homecoming videos.
The lineup of the band changes often, with artists leaving to work on solo careers, and new and old ones coming to replace them. This album’s roster consisted of Wes Hampton – tenor; Guy Penrod – lead; Marshall Hall – baritone; and Bill Gaither – bass.
The band has released 29 albums (not including compilations), at least 19 of which have charted. The band has also released 10 DVDs, which feature many other Christian artists as well. The Gaither Vocal Band has been honored with 2 Grammys and 17 Dove Awards.

This song emphasizes the miracle of the birth of Jesus.
Bible Reference… Isaiah 53:1-12; Matthew 1:21; Luke 2:1-7; John 1:1-5,10-14; 3:16; 2Corinthians 5:21

See, the Virgin is delivered in a cold and crowded stall;
mirror of the Father’s glory lies beside her in the straw.
He is Mercy’s incarnation; marvel at this miracle!
For the Virgin gently holds the Glorious Impossible.

Love has come to walk on water, turn the water into wine,
touch the leper, bless the children, love both human and divine.
Praise the wisdom of the Father, Who has spoken through His Son!
Speaking still, He calls us to the Glorious Impossible.

        CHORUS:
        Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Glorious Impossible!

He was bruised for our transgressions, and He bears eternal scars;
He was raised for our salvation, and His righteousness is ours.
Praise, oh praise Him, praise the glory of this lavish grace so full!
Lift your souls now and receive the Glorious Impossible! (CHORUS 2x)

The Miracle Of Christmas – 2005

This song was written by Shawn Pelton, Ed Cash, and Steven Curtis Chapman. It was recorded by Steven Curtis Chapman… included on his album, All I Really Want For Christmas.

Shawn Pelton is an American drummer and percussionist. He has recorded with a wide range of artists and has been a first call player since moving to New York in the late 1980s.
Ed Cash (born August 6, 1971) is a producer, songwriter, engineer, and multi-instrumentalist. He was named the “Producer of the Year” at the Gospel Music Awards for 4 consecutive years (2004–2007) and gained recognition for his work with Christian singer, Chris Tomlin. In addition to several Grammy Nominations and countless BMI Citations of Achievement, Cash has produced or written with the top artists today.

Steven Curtis Chapman (born November 21, 1962) is an American Christian music singer, songwriter, record producer, actor, author, and social activist.
After starting his career in the late 1980s as a songwriter and performer of contemporary Christian music, Chapman has since been recognized as one of the most prolific singers in the genre, releasing over 20 albums. Chapman has also won 5 Grammy awards and 58 Gospel Music Association Dove Awards, more than any other artist in history. His 7 “Artist of the Year” Dove Awards, his latest in 2009, are also an industry record. As of 2014, Chapman had sold more than 10 million albums and has 10 RIAA-certified Gold or Platinum albums.

This song reminds us that Christmas is not just the celebration of something that happened in the past. Christmas means Christ came… but is still here!
Bible Reference… Luke 2:1-20; John 1:1-5,10-14

A child is born tonight in Bethlehem.
His mother holds Him close and sings a sweet lullaby.
All the world lay sleeping, unaware that God Himself has come in the night.

The shepherds tremble as the angels sing,
and, in their song, the voice of God speaks peace to the world.
A miracle has happened; God has come and God has spoken…
but the miracle has only just begun.

        CHORUS:
        And the God who spoke is speaking still.
        And the God who came still comes.
        And the miracle that happened still happens in the heart
        that will believe… and receive the miracle of Christmas.

So, come to Bethlehem again and see
the One who’s come to rescue us, our Savior and King.
Bring your past; the joy, the sorrow, all your hope to find tomorrow
and hear the words again, “Fear not!”… and know that God is near. (CHORUS)

        TAG:
        Believe the miracle of Christmas. Will you believe?

Just A Kid – 2003

This song was written by Paul Overstreet and was recorded by Kenny Chesney… included on his album, All I Want For Christmas Is A Real Good Tan.

Paul Lester Overstreet (born March 17, 1955) is an American country music singer and songwriter. He recorded 10 studio albums between 1982 and 2005, and charted 16 singles on the Billboard country charts, including 2 #1 hits. He has also written singles for several other country acts.

Kenneth Arnold Chesney (born March 26, 1968) is an American country music singer, songwriter, and record producer. He has recorded 20 albums, 14 of which have been certified Gold or higher by the RIAA. He has also produced more than 40 Top 10 singles on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs and Country Airplay charts, 29 of which have reached #1. He is considered one of the most successful crossover country artists, and has sold over 30 million albums worldwide.
The Country Music Association honored Chesney with the Entertainer of the Year award in 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2008. Other notable awards he received include the Academy of Country Music’s 1997 New Male Vocalist of the Year, 2002 Top Male Vocalist of the Year, and the Triple Crown Award in 2005.

I’m not a big Kenny Chesney fan, but I like this Christmas song. It reminds us that Jesus has always been underestimated by those who don’t believe in Him… and can never be praised enough by those who do!
Bible Reference… Luke 2:8-20; 9:20; 22:39-46; 23:35; John 4:25,26; 20:31; Philippians 2:6-11

 

Well, the news spread through Jerusalem, “Tonight a Child is born!”
There are shepherds falling to their knees and angels blowing horns.
But, in their golden halls, the Pharisees scoffed and drank their wines;
they said, “It’s only Hebrew prophesy; we don’t care, and besides….”

        CHORUS:
        “He’s just a kid… that’s all He is.
        One more pebble in the gravel… one more rumor in the rabble;
        how can He be king? He’s just a kid!”

Well, in no time, it seemed the world was knocking on His door
for miracles and wonders they had never seen before.
Soon, the Pharisees stopped laughing and the silver sum was paid.
And, near the end, He knelt down in the garden and He prayed….

        2nd CHORUS:
        “I’m just a Kid… that’s all I am.
        I’ll need Your strength to see Me through it; and if it is Your will I’ll do it.
        How can I be King? I’m just a Kid?”

        CODA:
        Now, I think about the Baby and the Man at Christmas time;
        of mothers’ sons and fathers, and children just like mine.
        About the power in our selflessness; love and sacrifice…
        the Gift that we were given and the price.  (Repeat v.1 & CHORUS)

Welcome To Our World – 1998

This song was written by Chris Rice, and later recorded by him. But it was first recorded by Michael W. Smith… included on his album, Christmastime.

Chris Rice is an American singer and songwriter who works in the contemporary Christian music, contemporary folk and adult contemporary genres. He became a recording artist as well in 1996 after signing a contract with Rocketown Records.

Michael Whitaker Smith (born October 7, 1957) is an American musician, who has charted in both contemporary Christian and mainstream charts. His biggest success in mainstream music was in 1991 when “Place in this World” hit #6 on the Billboard Hot 100. Over the course of his career, he has sold more than 18 million albums.
Smith is a 3-time Grammy Award winner, an American Music Award recipient, and has earned 45 Dove Awards. In 1999, ASCAP awarded him with the “Golden Note” Award for lifetime achievement in songwriting, and in 2014 they honored him as the “cornerstone of Christian music” for his significant influence on the genre. He also has recorded 31 #1 Hit songs, 14 gold albums, and 5 platinum albums. He has also starred in 2 films and published 14 books.

This song is not usually thought of as a Christmas song… but it is.
Bible Reference… Isaiah 9:6,7; Mark 10:45; Luke 2:1-7,10; 4:18,19;
John 1:1-5,14-18; 3:16; 6:51; 12:46; 15:22; Ephesians 2:14-18; Philippians 2:5-8; 1Timothy 1:15; Hebrews 2:14-17

Tears are falling, hearts are breaking; how we need to hear from God!
You’ve been promised; we’ve been waiting. Welcome, Holy Child!
Welcome, Holy Child!

Hope that you don’t mind our manger; how I wish we would have known!
But, long awaited Holy Stranger, make Yourself at home.
Please, make Yourself at home.

Bring Your peace into our violence; bid our hungry souls be filled.
Word now breaking Heaven’s silence; welcome to our world! Welcome to our world!

Fragile finger, sent to heal us… tender brow prepared for thorns…
tiny heart, whose blood will save us… unto us is born! Unto us is born!

So, wrap our injured flesh around You; breathe our air and walk our sod.
Rob our sin and make us holy, perfect Son of God… Perfect Son of God.

TAG: Welcome to our world!

O Bethlehem Town – 1998

This song was written by Jerry Salley and was recorded by the Martins… included on their album, Light Of The World.

Jerry Salley is an American country and bluegrass singer-songwriter. Salley won SESAC’s 2003 “Country Music Songwriter of the Year” award. Salley is a 6-time Dove Award nominee, and won a Dove award in 1990 for Inspirational Song of the Year; winning the award for co-writing “His Strength is Perfect”, with Steven Curtis Chapman.

The Martins are a Christian music vocal trio composed of 3 siblings: Joyce Martin Sanders, Jonathan Martin, and Judy Martin Hess.
Discovered by Michael English and Mark Lowry with Bill Gaither at the 1987 National Quartet Convention mid-day booth cleanup. The kids, then ages 15, 16 and 17 were singing a capella in an empty Civic Center after being rejected by a local record company who told them to go back home and forget about trying to make it in “the business.”
But, following a weekend visit to their home town by Eddie Howard, they signed with Mark Five Records who launched their first album release in 1990, which quickly ran up the gospel charts. In 1990, a second album sealed their position in Gospel Music and the contract was sold to Springhill Records that would take them to an all new level of marketing. The Martins’ “big break” came in 1992 when Michael English and Mark Lowry insisted that Gloria Gaither listen to the group audition in the women’s restroom prior to a Gaither Homecoming video recording in Indiana. Gloria told Bill that he had to let them sing in the video. They have gone on to appear in over two dozen Homecoming videos. The group has also recorded over a dozen albums.
Originally from Hamburg, Arkansas – near the Louisiana border – the vocalists grew up firmly planted in the Southern Gospel tradition, so it is not surprising that, as they have matured, a broad range of influences have entered their musical mix.
Their portfolio of songs includes every musical palate, ranging from innovative and refashioned hymn arrangements to contemporary songs of praise and worship.

This song is filled with great harmony and reminds me of songs we sang growing up in my hometown church.
Bible Reference… Micah 5:2; Luke 2:1-7; John 7:42

O Bethlehem town…

There’s a chill in the midnight air, silence in the street;
the whole town settles down for a night of peaceful sleep.
But, tonight there’s no rest for a woman giving birth,
knowing she will soon deliver God’s grace to this earth.

        CHORUS:
        O Bethlehem town, chosen as the place
        where the love of God can be found on a Baby’s face.
        For, in a manger lies a little Boy;
        earth’s only Hope, Heaven’s greatest Joy sent down… to Bethlehem town.

It could have been a palace built with gold and fancy things,
with a bed of satin to welcome a new King.
But, instead, a humble stall became His bed today;
who would think that God, Himself, would honor you this way? (CHORUS)

        CODA:
        Eyes of God that looked down on the human race,
        are looking up today… from a Child’s face.  (CHORUS)

I Am You Are – 1998

This song was written by Harrie McCollough and (his ex-wife) Joyce Martin McCollough. It was recorded by the Martins… included on their album, Light Of The World.

The Martins are a Christian music vocal trio composed of 3 siblings: Joyce Martin Sanders, Jonathan Martin, and Judy Martin Hess.
Discovered by Michael English and Mark Lowry with Bill Gaither at the 1987 National Quartet Convention mid-day booth cleanup. The kids, then ages 15, 16 and 17 were singing a capella in an empty Civic Center after being rejected by a local record company who told them to go back home and forget about trying to make it in “the business.”
But, following a weekend visit to their home town by Eddie Howard, they signed with Mark Five Records who launched their first album release in 1990, which quickly ran up the gospel charts. In 1990, a second album sealed their position in Gospel Music and the contract was sold to Springhill Records that would take them to an all new level of marketing. The Martins’ “big break” came in 1992 when Michael English and Mark Lowry insisted that Gloria Gaither listen to the group audition in the women’s restroom prior to a Gaither Homecoming video recording in Indiana. Gloria told Bill that he had to let them sing in the video. They have gone on to appear in over two dozen Homecoming videos. The group has also recorded over a dozen albums.
Originally from Hamburg, Arkansas – near the Louisiana border – the vocalists grew up firmly planted in the Southern Gospel tradition, so it is not surprising that, as they have matured, a broad range of influences have entered their musical mix. Billboard magazine described The Martins as “breaking down walls and blurring the lines that separate Southern gospel from inspirational, adult contemporary, and other popular Christian music formats.”
Rather than resting in a single niche among the numerous Christian music genres, the Martins have rummaged freely through a stack of style books, grabbing whatever interests them. Sometimes, the different elements are unaltered and traditional, but more often they are tossed into the trio’s musical blender so a new mixture emerges. The result has been labeled simply as Martin Music.
Their portfolio of songs includes every musical palate, ranging from innovative and refashioned hymn arrangements to contemporary songs of praise and worship.

This song is a Christmas favorite of my wife.
Bible Reference… Isaiah 9:6; Matthew 1:23; Luke 2:1-20; John 1:1-5, 14-18

In a lowly stable on that Bethlehem morn, the Savior of the world was born.
Finally, the One behind Heaven’s gate came to be earth’s Emmanuel.
Tenderly, a mother rocks her baby Boy; she is holding Heaven’s joy.
Angels lend an ear, she begins to sing a lullaby fit for a King.

        CHORUS:
        You are Wonderful, little Prince of Peace, tiny Counselor, Oh, Mighty God!
        You are Ancient of Days, precious newborn King. I am, You are!

Lowly shepherds came this blessed Babe to see, and Mary marveled at the mystery.
Only simple faith could help them understand; He would be the crucified Lamb.
And she sang to her sweet little Lamb…  (CHORUS)