Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Community Singing - July 2010

In a past blog post about fellowship activities around here, I mentioned the singing we do together on the Lord's Day. We had recently gone through our "hymnal" (which is just a collections of hymns we had put together) and removed probably 2/3 of the hymns as they were either doctrinally incorrect or just fluff pieces with no real spiritual meat; and now, it seems over time we're leaning more toward the singing of the Psalms from our psalter as our preferred song choices, given that they are based on God's Word, where we believe God has dictated how He should be worshiped (see the regulative principle of worship).

In our singing of the Psalms, we're also trying to learn them by heart so that when the Psalter is not around, either at times during the day now, or perhaps if we're ever prohibited from having it, we will be able to continue to make a joyful noise unto the Lord.

We've recorded our Psalm singing a couple of times now (which we hope to continue to do), and since some of you might be learning from the same Psalter we are, or even if you're not, I wanted to share them with you. I look forward to listening to them myself as hearing songs repeatedly helps me memorize them:

Psalms 1A-12B (minus 4B)

Psalms 4B & 13-18L


(This is not the performance-oriented "worship" that occurs in most "churches" today; it is just simple a capella Psalm singing.)


It is our prayer that God glorifies Himself through us, at times of singing His praises, and throughout our lives in any way He might.

-- David

9 comments:

Ante Zivkovic said...

Hi David, I'll be writing soon my Croatia update. And David, how come you're not on FB? I listened to psalm singing. It's great.

At one point I started to laugh because I couldn't figure out of which voice your voice reminds me of. Then it hit me- Weird Al Yankovic.

Anyway, you and your house are always in my prayers.

Lord with you

David and Susan Sifford said...

Hi Ante,

Thanks for saying hi. As for Facebook, I'm just not a social media type of person. :) (Actually, I generally disagree somewhat with a lot of that stuff.)

And, you're just Yank-ovic-ing my chain, right? ;) (Sue actually came up with that one.)

May God's graces and mercies be with you and your family.

-- David

Ante Zivkovic said...

It's just the color of your voice. Don't get me wrong. Your singing is the best I heard. Kate and I went to a baptist church one Sunday. And the singing was pretty "charismatic", accompanied by a piano and a lead singer, who afterward sang a song she wrote and then started crying. It was all very emotional but very on the crooked side. We left.

David and Susan Sifford said...

Hi Ante,

No problem at all. :) Actually, Sue is the one with the good voice; I just get the songs started.

That's pretty much what "worship" is in most churches today -- emotion.

-- David

Anonymous said...

Hello Siffords:

What is you disagreement with social media that you don't have with blogs, if I may ask? If you don't desire to answer, that is no problem either.

I showed Sarah the videos of the pigs, william the cat, and the goat milk thing again today. She thought it was great fun.

Thanks

Todd

David and Susan Sifford said...

Hi Todd,

To start, please note that these are my opinions, and mine alone.

To me, a lot of the social media is very "me"-centric. When Myspace came out, just the very name suggested that; and then all sorts of people suddenly wanted to broadcast to the entire planet all sorts of everything about their lives. First, why would I think that anyone was interested in the details of my life; and second, why would I want to put out publicly the details of my life? To me, these things encourage a feeling of self-importance.

And Myspace was just the beginning. Then there was Facebook, which I saw most of the people who we know from apostate churches of the past jump on as quickly as possible (shouldn't that raise a red flag?). Now, 1/13 of the entire living population of the planet is on it. Further, with the whole Facebook "Friends" idea, now in good conscience I would have to vet all of my "Friends" to make sure I'm not "Friends" with someone who has a lifestyle with which I disagree, otherwise I personally would feel that by having them as a "Friend" I would be condoning their lifestyle, which I wouldn't want to do.

Then Twitter came, where now people are telling people that they just walked across the room, or just ate a bowl of cereal. Real important stuff. Why would I think that anyone was interested in the fact that I am now headed to the restroom?

From a worldly standpoint, if you look at businesses, for their marketing purposes, for the most part you *must* be involved in social media, and continue to jump into the next social media "thing." Of course that means techies have a continually growing set of technologies to keep up with.

And so then, what's next?

How much of the God-given time (which applies to non-Christians as well, because their time is given to them by God, and to which they also will be held accountable one day) during they day are people spending on social media vs. how much time they're contemplating the person and office of Christ Jesus?

The Internet's social media confabulations are just more distractions for people to be involved in to get their minds off of God. The world is heading down the social media path at fiber optic speed: that makes me question it big-time.

I understand that there can be some benefit for some of these things. It took us 2 1/2 years before we started a blog, and even then I hesitated. The two main reasons we started one were 1) to continue to keep in contact with those who we were emailing our every-so-often updates of our goings-on here, and 2) in case something we're doing might help someone who's trying to separate from the world. In the end, we do pray God uses it to His glory however He might. Still though, I promised myself I would *never* let our blog be about how I tied my shoes with double knots today vs. yesterday, when I only used single knots (I guess unless there was utility value to that); or that my goldfish beat me in a staring contest today.

Anyway, put that all together, and to me, there are things just inherently wrong with it all.


Glad your family's enjoying the site.

-- David

Ryan Powers said...

Hey David,

I enjoy your blog updates. Thank you for doing them, and for the work you do keeping Michael's material uploaded and available to those of us not physically present! Question: can you put the singing files up so that they are downloadable as .m3p like the sermons? I might just be something I am doing, but when I try to download them (even "save target as") I am getting a .m3u file that won't work.

God bless you both,
Ryan

David and Susan Sifford said...

Hi Ryan,

Thank you for saying hi, and thank you for the "thank you"s.

Everything we have on audio is available in mp3 format (in fact, those are the audio files themselves). There are several ways to get them:

1. All audio mp3s should be available at http://www.lazarusunbound.com/audiosermons.shtml. Just look for the "Fellowship Singing" section.

2. If you right click on the m3u and copy the link location, paste that into the URL address bar of your browser, change m3u to mp3 and hit Enter, if your browser settings are set up for it, that should download the mp3.

3. If you download the m3u to your hard drive and edit the m3u file, in it is the URL for the mp3 version of the audio; and then you can cut and paste that URL into the URL address bar of your browser.

That's probably more than you cared to know about; but I thought I'd throw that all out there, in case you or someone else finds that information useful.

Please let me know if you still have problems or if you have any other questions.

-- David

Ante Zivkovic said...

You are absolutely right about everything and I deleted all of my "friends" from face book. Its now brother-book. I have 8 friends altogether- Kate, Michael, Sanrico, Todd, Ryan, Debbie, Renee, Kris,- we miss you bro...