Skip to main content

Life in Greencastle - Within These Walls

This past Sunday, I sat down after the first reading from Scripture. I had just lifted up Jesus’ own proclamation: He had come to speak good news to the poor, to bring help and healing to those down and out. Then, the choir rose to proclaim their own word for us through song.

It was exactly what I wanted to say. Many of you felt the power of this anthem and heard the truth of those sung words. But, I know not all of us had the occasion. For those of you who were not able to join us, I pass on to you the lyrics. It will hardly do justice to what happened this past Sunday. In fact, I encourage you to track down a copy of the service on tape and to give it a listen. But, for now … this will do. Let these words serve as a seed and a creed, a reminder of all God desires and a projector of all that we hope to be. And let us always be gathered in to be sent out.

Wes

Within These Walls
words and music by Pepper Choplin
For the celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of Dover Shores Baptist Church, Orlando, Florida
1991 Purifoy Publishing

Within these walls, we assemble.
Within these walls, we gather in Your name.
As we join our hearts in a holy union, we come to find communion in Your holiness again.

Within these walls, let there be harmony;
a common bond; a Spirit from above.
And as Your children let us love each other as sisters and as brothers united by Your love.

We are the branches, You are the Vine.
We are the vessels and You are the Wine.
We are the body, You are the Head.
For every hunger, You are the Bread.

Within these walls, we assemble.
Within these walls, we gather in Your name.
As we join our hearts in a holy union, we come to find communion in Your holiness again.

Within these walls, let there be refuge,
a place of rest when doubts and trials form.
And let us lift each other as we gather to find Your peace no matter how terrible the storm.

We are the branches, You are the Vine.
We are the vessels and You are the Wine.
We are the body, You are the Head.
For every hunger, You are the Bread.

Within these walls, give us Your vision.
Within these walls, let us understand
that beyond these walls, there are hurting people who have never felt your healing hand.

Beyond these walls, send us forward.
Beyond these walls, let Your will be done.
We are Your people; You will leave us never, and we shall work together until Your kingdom comes.

Your kingdom come!

Within these walls, let us listen.
Within these walls, let us pray … Let us pray.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Acts 3:11-21 - Questions for Reflection & Prayer

This week we continued looking at the story of Peter and John healing a lame man on their way to the Temple (Acts 3).  Indwelled with the Spirit of the Living God, Peter and John are close to the source of all life:  Jesus the Christ.  They are continuing to devote themselves to the habits and practices that will allow the fruits of the Spirit to grow within them, including devoting themselves to times of communal prayer on a daily basis.

Now, the crowds hear this news of the lame man's healing, and they run to see this man and to discover what power or technique has healed the man.  They discover the man standing next to Peter and John and assume that these two are "holy men," something many people were searching for in Jesus' day.  This same search still goes on today.  One way we seek a better life is to seek out celebrities, gurus and human leaders that we can put our faith and hope in.

Question for reflection:  How are we tempted in our culture to put our trust i…

Acts 2:42-47 - Questions for Reflection & Study

This past Sunday, we took a look at Luke's first summary passage in the story of Acts:  chapter 2, verses 42-47.  Here, Luke is presenting a billboard of what the Church looks like at its best.  He is trying to convince Theophilus that Christianity is worth his attention. 

The early Church captures what all of us are looking for, whether we know it or not.  This is a close community that truly cares for one another, where everyone truly is seen as a brother and sister, and where no one person is considered more or less important as the other.  Needs are being met.  There is joy in their fellowship. 

Take a moment to think about a time in your life when you experienced the joy and blessing of a deep, loving community?  Where was it, and what made this community so different?  What role did you play in this community?
Luke tells us the disciples "devoted themselves" to four essential practices.  The Greek word for "devoted" is one that is often used in the context…

Acts 5:1-11 - Questions for reflection & prayer

This past Sunday we looked at one of the more unsettling stories in the Book of Acts:  the deaths of Ananias and Sapphira.  As shared by Luke, this couple sold a piece of land and then proceeded to bring only a portion of the profit to the apostles - laying it at their feet for the good of the community.  However, what appeared to be their grave mistake (pun intended) was their collusion in claiming to have brought all the proceeds to the apostles when - in fact - they were keeping some back for themselves.  Peter announces first to Ananias the Lord's judgment, followed by a similar verdict being handed down to Sapphira a short time later.

Seen by itself, this is a strange story, but it begins to make more sense when we see it as "part of the whole."  The story of Ananias and Sapphira comes right after we hear once again of the community's unity and generosity, including their willingness to share their own goods and resources to take care of one another (ch. 4).  Th…