Matthew Smith and Indelible Grace Concert

Matthew Smith and Indelible Grace Concert

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 – 7:30 PM – FREE ADMISSION

Full band. Old hymns. New music.

Matthew Smith is a Nashville-based singer-songwriter who writes brand new music to centuries-old hymn texts. He is a founding member of the Indelible Grace community, whose work has drawn acclaim across denominational lines and is used in churches around the world. Born out of a college ministry, the reimagined hymns have found wide acceptance both among college students and the church at large, joining people who desire to honor tradition with those who want a modern musical approach. His latest album, Watch The Rising Day, explores the tension of living in a broken world while awaiting Christ’s return and the restoration of all things.

Matthew Smith and Indelible Grace – Come, Ye Sinners

A love offering will be taken. Matthew will also give a seminar for worship leaders and church musicians  at 5:30pm before the concert . This is how Matthew describes the seminar:

“During the seminar, I will share my story of how I came to write new music to centuries-old hymn texts and why hymns are still important for the modern church. Much of the time will be open for a Q&A discussion, interacting with your questions. Recommended for (but not limited to!) pastors, worship leaders, church musicians, and songwriters.”

If you would like more information about the concert, particularly how you can help us promote this event, or if you are a worship leader/musician interested in attending the seminar, please contact Pastor Dave Salyer (dave@tpckearney.org)

An Interview with Matthew

 

Who may attend a funeral?

The ultimate purpose of a funeral is the same as for any service of Christian worship: to worship God.

We sometimes think that a funeral is only meant for the family and close friends of the deceased. This leads us to feel awkward about attending a funeral for someone we didn’t know very well (or at all). We might feel as if we are disturbing a private event. But  this is not the case.

It is certainly true that these services are especially helpful for the acute grief that family members and close friends feel. But a funeral is a service of the church and it is therefore also appropriate for all members of that body to participate, even if they were not well acquainted with the deceased. There are at least two reasons for this. First, we are told to “rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” Our mere presence at this service is an encouragement and comfort to the bereaved. Second, we should all participate in funeral services because we can draw from them immense Spiritual benefit for our own lives.

Funerals are a time when we, as a body, come together to focus upon God and our life and death in the light of His love for us in Jesus Christ. It is a time for us to consider our own death and how we might die well in the Lord. It is a time to remember our own lost loved ones and to continue applying the salve of the gospel to those wounds in our hearts. It is a time to prepare for future losses that we all know will surely come. It is a time when we stand together as a people united to Christ and proclaim that death is not the final word for us.

So it is very appropriate for all Christians to come together and participate in a funeral service: to hear the words of eternal life from the Scriptures, to heartily sing the hope of the resurrection, and to lay to rest the God-given body of one of Christ’s lambs for whom he gave his life.

We know that many are simply unable to come to funerals because of work or other engagements, and that is totally understandable. This note is merely intended as an encouragement to those who are free to come but may be wondering if it is appropriate for them to do so. Know that you are always welcome to attend any funeral we perform and that your presence is a ministry to your brothers and sisters in Christ.

Pastor David Salyer
Associate Pastor
Trinity Presbyterian Church, Kearney, NE

Advent

Advent

What are we celebrating during the season of Advent?

The English word Advent is derived from the Latin advenire, “to come to.” Advent has to do with the Lord’s coming to us. The Lord has come to us (at the birth of Christ), regularly comes to us (especially when we gather together for worship), and will come to us (at the end of this age).

Advent season, then, is a time to reflect upon all the ways—past, present, and future— in which the Lord comes to us. Many advent devotional schemes ask us to pretend that we are living before Jesus’ birth. They ask us to act as if we ourselves are expecting the birth of a cute, little baby. I mean, who doesn’t like babies? But we must remember that Jesus also comes to us a man, as a sacrifice, as a king, as a judge, and in many other roles that make our redemption possible.

There is certainly merit in celebrating the birth of the Christ child, and this is what we do in the following season of the Church Year: Christmas. Advent is slightly different in focus. We would be remiss if we did not celebrate the ways that Christ comes to us now, particularly in our Lord’s Day worship, through Word and Sacrament (Matt. 18:20, Heb. 2:12, 1 Cor. 10:16). We would be remiss if we did not celebrate the hope of His final coming when all sin and wickedness will be finally undone (Rev. 21). So let us keep all of these “comings” prevalent in our corporate and private worship this season.

The songs we sing during Advent are often songs we usually associate with Christmas, but if we inspect them closely we will find that many of them make a point of connecting Christ’s first coming with his present and future comings. The traditional Advent hymn, “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus” exemplifies this multifaceted season.

Come, Thou long expected Jesus
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee.
Israel’s Strength and Consolation,
Hope of all the earth Thou art;
Dear Desire of every nation,
Joy of every longing heart.

Born Thy people to deliver,
Born a child and yet a King,
Born to reign in us forever,
Now Thy gracious kingdom bring.
By Thine own eternal Spirit
Rule in all our hearts alone;
By Thine all sufficient merit,
Raise us to Thy glorious throne.

When we understand and celebrate all the ways the Lord has come, is coming, and will come to us, we can more readily make this the cry of our hearts: “Come, Lord Jesus!”

 

(Parts of this essay were adapted from an article by Rev. Jeffrey Meyers)