Sunday, 7 June 2009

Saying something positive about charismatic worship!

I've spent the last few months absorbed in a study of the Spring Harvest 2008 songbook - mostly in order to confirm all of my prejudices about charismatic worship - and yes, most of them were confirmed!
Its lack of engagement with contemporary issues is quite shocking. Only one song, for example, out of the 120 songs, mentions ecology! Only 6, in my opinion, really engage with issues such as poverty or oppression. Yet, in these 6 songs (by 3 authors), I detect a change. Particularly when you consider that the 1994 songbook had no songs about any of these issues and had a picture of Christians dressed as the Crusaders! Certainly, these 6 songs are framed in the typical charismatic ways (not always helpfully), but their presence in the songbook is worth noting. They are marked by an engagement with contemporary issues, a concern for justice and the oppressed, an integration of God with the day-to-day and a recognition that as Christians they participate in the bringing in of God's kingdom to the earth.
I think this is the best lyric. There are some aspects of the song I'm not a fan of, but here are some good charismatic lyrics:

"Bring heaven to earth, Lord,
... You invite us to partner with you,
to see your kingdom come.

...Bring home to the homeless,
...Bring worth to the purchased,
and touch to the shamed,
...bring truth where there's spin
...bring justice to profit,
bring patience to growth;
bring wisdom to progress,
...bring freedom from debt, Lord,
an end to excess."

Listen to the full song here.

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