Saturday, July 02, 2016

The Prayer of Jehoshaphat

Here is a hymn I wrote based on 2 Chronicles 20. Stanza 1 relates how King Jehoshaphat reminds the Lord about what he, mighty God, had all done for his people in the past. In stanza 2 the king prays about how Judah was being oppressed by enemy hordes. In the first part of stanza 3 the LORD declares that the battle is his, not the people's; in the second half God's people resoundingly praise the LORD.

Here's a link to the rest of my songs.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Heart heavy yet joyful

With a heaviness of heart, and yet joyful in the Lord, I should mention that the consistory of Jubilee Canadian Reformed Church, Ottawa, has granted me the status of minister emeritus, as of Sept. 1, 2016. This decision of consistory, made upon my request and the advice of my physician due to my declining health, was approbated by last Thursday's Classis Ontario Central and the deputies of Regional Synod East.

At classis my good friend, the Rev. Peter Feenstra, encouraged me with the following words of the Prophet Isaiah, ch. 43:

1 But now thus says the Lord,
he who created you, O Jacob,
    he who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
    I have called you by name, you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
    and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
    and the flame shall not consume you.
3 For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.”

That precious gospel is Dora's and my comfort and joy.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Victoria Day! God Save the Queen!

Today is Victoria Day across Canada. We celebrated it last night, appropriately with fireworks, at the rural home of someone of our congregation. Thanks David and Melissa, and Mike, our resident pryrothechnician!

This morning on CBC we heard the Overture of Handel's Music for the Royal Fireworks. Always impressive.

Queen Victoria
Queen Elizabeth II

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Task is finished fifteen years serving as chairman of the Book of Praise Committee, I completed my term this past Friday--in fact, more than my term. A normal time on a Canadian Reformed synodical committee is nine years, but since we were in the midst of a large project in 2007, revamping and augmenting our songbook, it was felt that I should stay on an extra six years. I loved the work! I laboured beside wonderful brothers and sisters, and experienced only kindness, good cooperation, generosity, and mutual respect. 

We also worked for a number of years with our URCNA counterparts and were well on our way to proposing a hymn section for the "Common Songbook" to our respective synods. However, a few synods back, the URCNA changed direction and began working with the OPC instead. We were saddened by that, but I wish them well as they work to produce the "Trinity Psalter Hymnal." I look forward to seeing the final product.

I pray God may be with the current committee, and may the Book of Praise be used weekly and daily in church, school, and home to help God's people praise the Lord with psalm and hymn!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Address to General Synod Dunnville

Yesterday I had the privilege of addressing Synod and of presenting the third edition of the Book of Praise to the churches on behalf of the Standing Committee for the Book of Praise. Here is a video recording of my speech in which I also relate some of the history of our songbook.