Weekend Links

Weekend Links

Worship leaders, pastors, and everyone serving this weekend: know that I’m praying for you! I pray that God will bless you and stretch you and use you to grow His kingdom and expand His family.

As usual, I found lots of great links this week that I wanted to share with you but that didn’t quite fit into a post. When you get a few minutes this weekend, check them out and be encouraged and challenged. Maybe even learn something. 🙂

Remember, these are just excerpts, but I strongly encourage you to click through and read each post in its entirety.

Tyler Huckabee reflects on the melancholy undertones of Christmas – and some of our favorite Christmas songs:

[Vince] Guaraldi wrote “Christmastime Is Here” at the behest of Lee Mendelson, who co-produced A Charlie Brown Christmas along with Peanuts creator Charles Schultz. The song was intended as an instrumental piece, but the network demanded lyrics—lyrics which Mendelson absent-mindedly scribbled out on the back of an envelope. They’re awful: “Christmastime is here. Happiness and cheer. Fun for all that children call their favorite time of year.”

That insipid frivolity stands in stark contrast to the melody itself, which is much truer to the glum mood of Schultz’s comic…

Some celebrations do all the heavy lifting for you. Christmas requires some work on your part. It’s a melancholy time of year. Celebration will have to be crafted from whatever tools are at hand. That’s why it’s called “making merry.”

Have some Christmas cheer through these free songs by Kate Thomas (but donate if you can):

Wishing you and yours a very merry Christmas.

This Christmas EP is available for free download, or purchase at any amount you choose.

Merry Christmas!

Steve Mathewson lists six ways to make sure your Christmas sermon is accurate and Bible-centered:

After preaching the birth narratives in Matthew and Luke for so many years, pastors may be so hungry for fresh insights that they embrace novel interpretations that obscure the story as badly as the old misunderstandings…

Given these concerns, let me offer six mistakes to avoid when preaching the story of Jesus’s birth. My concern is to help you proclaim, in the power of the Spirit, the birth narratives in a way that raises your listeners’ love and affection (and yours) for our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Here’s a cool new take on “Angels From The Realms Of Glory” by the band Lion Of Judah:

We’re a new Christian band seeking to use our gifts to to write music which comforts, encourages, and inspires our brothers and sisters in Christ.

This is the first single we’re going to release and it’s FREE/Pay what you want!

Jason Soroski shares a little detail from A Charlie Brown Christmas that’s easy to miss, but really cool:

I was in the first grade back when they still performed Christmas pageants in schools (less than 50 years, but still a very long time ago), and our class performed a version of the Charlie Brown Christmas. Since I was kind of a bookworm and already had a blue blanket, I was chosen to play the part of Linus. As Linus, I memorized Luke 2:8-14, and that Scripture has been hidden in my heart ever since.

But while working so diligently to learn those lines, there is one important thing I didn’t notice then, and didn’t notice until now.

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