Archive for the Music and Singing Category

Mar 24

New Live Recording: “My Father Planned it All”

2014 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Music and Singing

There’s a song we’ve been singing lately at DSC called “My Father Planned it All.” The lyrics are true and the tune, written by Drew Hodge, sinks it into our hearts.

The words are below and a new live recording is available for download here. This live recording is from Clarus ’14, a regional conference of The Gospel Coalition hosted at our church earlier this month.

My Father Planned it All

1. What though the way be lonely, and dark the shadows fall;
I know, where’er it leadeth, my Father planned it all.

The sun may shine tomorrow, the shadows break and flee;
‘Twill be the way He chooses, my Father’s plan for me.

I sing through shade and sunshine, and trust what-e’er befall;
I sing, I can’t be silent; my Father planned it all.

2. He guides my faltering footsteps along the weary way,
for well He knows the pathway will lead to endless day.

3. A day of light and gladness on which no shade will fall,
‘Tis this at last awaits me, my Father planned it all.

Words by H.H. Pierson
Music by Drew Hodge 

Visit the DSC Store and Bandcamp Page for a number of other songs and albums recorded at DSC.

Feb 28

Studio Recording: “Lord, We Come to Hear Your Word”

2014 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Music and Singing

There’s a song we will sing on Sunday that you know well. We sing it from time to time as a prayer of illumination before the sermon. It’s a song to help us ask God for ears to hear and hears to love what he has said in his Word.

What you might not know is that Drew and some of DSC’s musicians recorded this song and it’s available for download here. Name your price and it’s yours.

Here are the words:

Lord, We Come to Hear Your Word

1. Lord, we come to hear Your Word;
Shine Your light! Unsheathe Your sword!
Send Your Spirit forth in pow’r;
Come and bless Your church this hour.

We confess, our thoughts have strayed;
Minds distracted and dismayed;
On the Son, fix now each thought;
Help us worship as we ought.

2. Lord, as we prepare to hear,
wake each soul, unstop each ear;
Conquer every stubborn heart;
Mercy, saving grace impart.

We confess, without Your grace,
vain our efforts in this place;
Send illumination’s light;
Open eyes and give us sight.

3. Lord, we lift up to Your care
him who stands now to declare
truth that teaches, warns, consoles;
Bless this feast to feed our souls.

For Your Word, O Lord, we yearn;
Empty, let it not return;
Come, accomplish all Your will;
Draw, convict, give life, and fill.

Words: Kenneth A Puls, ©1998, Music: Drew Hodge

Of course, these are perfect words to sing before the sermon, but they are also words for us to pray and sing every day. Visit the DSC Store and Bandcamp Page for a number of other songs and albums recorded at DSC.

Apr 1

A Song for Worshipping the Risen Christ

2013 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Music and Singing

Here’s a video from a new song we sang on Easter Sunday, “Christ is Risen, He is Risen Indeed!,” by Keith and Kristyn Getty.

[RSS and email readers, click here to view this video]


1. How can it be, the One who died,
Has borne our sin through sacrifice
To conquer every sting of death?
Sing, sing hallelujah.

2. For joy awakes as dawning light
When Christ’s disciples lift their eyes.
Alive He stands, their Friend and King;
Christ, Christ He is risen.

Christ is risen, He is risen indeed!
Oh, sing hallelujah.
Join the chorus, sing with the redeemed;
Christ is risen, He is risen indeed.

3. Where doubt and darkness once had been,
They saw Him and their hearts believed.
But blessed are those who have not seen,
Yet, sing hallelujah.

4. Once bound by fear now bold in faith,
They preached the truth and power of grace.
And pouring out their lives they gained
Life, life everlasting.

5. The power that raised Him from the grave
Now works in us to powerfully save.
He frees our hearts to live His grace;
Go tell of His goodness.

Buy the song on Amazon, here. Review more music by Keith and Kristyn Gettyn at

Jul 26

Men, Sing Like You Mean It!

2012 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Music and Singing,Recommended Link

In the course of Ryan’s mini-series on praise in the Psalms, the subject of singing has come up a number of times. Paul tells us to, “[address] one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs” (Ephesians 5:19). Singing to one another about God and singing with one another to God has a way of winding the truth we sing around our hearts. Truth is beautiful set to song, and it is even more beautiful when we sing it together.

If singing is this important for God’s people in their encouragement of one another in truth, then it’s an important place for men to lead out. Stephen Altrogge’s helpful blog, “Dads, Sing Like You Mean It Because Your Kids Are Watching,” will encourage all of us to sing out and sing loudly, and especially the men and fathers among us.
The following account was written by a member in Stephen’s church about the timeless impact of his father’s leadership in song:

Though I hold many cherished memories of [my father], perhaps the most vivid was his excitement over singing certain hymns. By all accounts he possessed at best an “average” voice when it comes to uniqueness and tonal quality. But he sang his favorites with a conviction that was beyond convincing and was by far one of the loudest and most joyful voices in a congregation of approximately 350. I remember looking up at him and “checking him out” while he was singing… “Is he for real?” I would wonder. When he would catch me looking at him he would simply “lock-eyes” with me and sing all the louder while he broadened his grin to match proportion with his pleasure.

He wouldn’t just sing hymns at church either. I can think of many times when the two of us would be welding up a go-kart frame or swapping an engine on a Saturday afternoon and he would spontaneously break into a hymn. In my teens and early twenties I actually found it annoying given the perplexity of some of the situations we would be deep into. But then again I would eventually come around and sing with him anyway. I just never managed to muster the joy he got out of it. I didn’t think about it then but I can see clearly now that he was blessing me with rich God honoring doctrine. That he was lovingly cramming truth into my psyche that would not return void in my soul.

The now heart-softening aspect of these memories is that I am standing here in my church singing these same time impervious truths in front of my children. I catch them looking up at me and I wonder if I am anywhere near as good an example as he was. I get caught up and overwhelmed when I recognize the blessing that God had granted me in an earthly father. How diligent Dad was to bless me in an eternal way without ever making a point to tell me that he was doing it.

Stephen goes on to recount his father’s death. It’s quite moving, and relates the enduring impact of this father’s voice on his son.

. . . Now almost two years later I am still unable to sing a lot of those “old-Baptist” tunes without experiencing the “echo” of my father. I count it a privilege to sing these rich truths in tribute to the one true God; but I also experience the benefit of knowing I am fulfilling the scriptural command to honor my earthly father as well.

If the congregation is actually the choir, then we should have a rank of male choir leaders. So, men, let’s sing out and sing loud! If you aren’t looked to by a son on Sunday morning, you are still looked to by someone. Read Stephen’s whole post here and look forward to “leading the choir” on Sunday morning.

Jul 20

Piper: Ten Preparations for Sunday Morning

After a short bout with shingles last weekend (many thanks to Trent for pinch-hitting!), I’m eager to get back to and wrap up our mini-series of praise in the Psalms. This coming Sunday, Lord willing, we’ll look at “The Aims” of praise, according to the Psalms.

Here are a few things you could do between now and Sunday AM to make the most of your time with others and the Lord.

You could read through and seek to apply these 10 suggested preparations for Sunday AM from John Piper:

1. Pray that God Would Give You a Good and Honest Heart

The heart we need is a work of God. That’s why we pray for it. “I will give you a new heart” (Ezekiel 36:26). “I will give them a heart to know Me” (Jeremiah 24:7). Let’s pray, “O Lord, give me a heart for you. Give me a good and honest heart. Give me a soft and receptive heart. Give me a humble and meek heart. Give me an fruitful heart.”

2. Meditate on the Word of God

“O taste and see that the LORD is good” (Psalm 34:8). On Saturday night, read some delicious portion of your Bible with a view to stirring up hunger for God. This is the appetizer for Sunday morning’s meal.

3. Purify Your Mind by Turning Away from Worldly Entertainment

“Putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls” (James 1:21). It astonishes me how many Christians watch the same banal, empty, silly, trivial, titillating, suggestive, immodest TV shows that most unbelievers watch. This makes us small and weak and worldly and inauthentic in worship. Instead, turn off the television on Saturday night and read something true and great and beautiful and pure and honorable and excellent and worthy of praise (Philippians 4:8). Your heart will unshrivel and be able to feel greatness again.

4. Trust in the Truth That You Already Have

The hearing of the Word of God that fails during trial has no root (Luke 8:13). What is the root we need? It is trust. Jeremiah 17:7-8 says, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, and whose trust is the LORD. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, that extends its roots by a stream.” Trusting in the truth is the best way to prepare yourself to receive more.

5. Rest Long Enough Saturday Night to be Alert and Hopeful Sunday Morning

“All things are lawful for me, but I will not be enslaved by anything” (1 Corinthians 6:12). I am not laying down any law here. I am saying: there are Saturday night ways that ruin Sunday morning worship. Don’t be enslaved by them. Without sufficient sleep, our minds are dull, our emotions are flat, our proneness to depression is higher, and our fuses are short. My counsel: decide when you must get up on Sunday in order to have time to eat, get dressed, pray and meditate on the Word, prepare the family, and travel to church; and then compute backward eight hours and be sure that you are in bed 15 minutes before that. Read your Bible in bed and fall asleep with the Word of God in your mind. I especially exhort parents to teach teenagers that Saturday is not the night to stay out late with friends. If there is a special late night, make if Friday. It is a terrible thing to teach children that worship is so optional that it doesn’t matter if you are exhausted when you come.

6. Forebear One Another Sunday Morning Without Grumbling and Criticism

“They grumbled in their tents; they did not listen to the voice of the LORD” (Psalm 106:25). Sunday morning grumbling and controversy and quarreling can ruin a worship service for a family. When there is something you are angry about or some conflict that you genuinely think needs to be talked about, forebear. Of course if you are clearly the problem and need to apologize, do it as quickly as you can (Matthew 5:23-24). But if you are fuming because of the children’s or spouse’s delinquency, forebear, that is, be slow to anger and quick to listen (James 1:19). In worship, open yourself to God’s exposing the log in your own eye. It may be that all of you will be humbled and chastened so that no serious conflict is necessary.

7. Be Meek and Teachable When You Come

“Receive with meekness the word implanted, which is able to save your souls” (James 1:21). Meekness and teachability are not gullibility. You have your Bible and you have your brain. Use them. But if we come with a chip on our shoulders and a suspicion of the preaching, week after week, we will not hear the Word of God. Meekness is a humble openness to God’s truth with a longing to be changed by it.

8. Be Still as You Enter the Room and Focus Your Mind’s Attention and Heart’s Affection on God

“Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10). As we enter the sanctuary, let us come on the lookout for God, and leave on the lookout for people. Come with a quiet passion to seek God and his power. We will not be an unfriendly church if we are aggressive in our pursuit of God during the prelude and aggressive in our pursuit of visitors during the postlude.

9. Think Earnestly About What Is Sung and Prayed and Preached

“Brethren, do not be children in your thinking; yet in evil be infants, but in your thinking be mature” (1 Corinthians 14:20). So Paul says to Timothy, “Think over what I say, for the Lord will give you understanding in everything” (2 Timothy 2:7). Anything worth hearing is worth thinking about. If you would take heed how you hear, think about what you hear.

10. Desire the Truth of God’s Word More Than You Desire Riches or Food

“Like newborn babies, desire the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation” (1 Peter 2:2). As you sit quietly and pray and meditate on the text and the songs, remind yourself of what Psalm 19:10-11 says about the Words of God: “More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb.”

Of course, if you’ve missed any of the three previous messages on praise on the Psalms, you could also get caught up today or tomorrow. We’ve looked at “The Basics” of praise, “The Ingredients” of praise, and “The Form” of praise.

You could remind yourself a few of John Wesley’s “Directions for Singing:”

Sing all. See that you join with the congregation as frequently as you can. Let not a single degree of weakness or weariness hinder you. If it is a cross to you, take it up, and you will find it a blessing.

Sing lustily and with good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep; but lift up your voice with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of its being heard, then when you sung the songs of Satan.

Above all sing spiritually. Have an eye to God in every word you sing. Aim at pleasing him more than yourself, or any other creature. In order to do this attend strictly to the sense of what you sing, and see that your heart is not carried away with the sound, but offered to God continually….

Or you could simply read one of the most exultant Psalms, Psalm 145. This coming Sunday we’ll be all over the Psalms, but we’ll give special attention to this crescendo of the Psalter.

And, of course, pray! Pray that God would help us come eager, expectant, and exultant. Pray, “satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love that we may rejoice and be glad all our days” (Psa. 90:14). I’m praying that for you now.