we are forgiven! // hymn #7 of challenge

I was asked by our Pastor to compose a hymn for our church’s 31st anniversary. Yay! It is always fun for me to compose a piece of music tailored to a specific group or event. Pastor Schoeneck shared some bible passages and content ideas with me, but ultimately he let me create the piece freely. We have been members at Beautiful Savior for nine months and the main themes that I hear over and over again are that through Jesus…

We Are Forgiven
We Are Gathered
We are Growing

Forgiven

At Beautiful Savior, the message of forgiveness is not only told but also lived. Following every email from Pastor Schoeneck you will read “We are forgiven!” and instantly be reminded of Christ’s love. The relationships at church are like a family. An advantage of being a smaller church is that you get to know everyone and notice the visitors in order to include them.

I like to think of it as my grandparents’ kitchen table. We have a large family (they had nine daughters) and when someone comes into their home they are welcomed into their tiny kitchen round this little table of six chairs full of food. Grandma and Grandpa rarely  invite just one family over there is always someone else coming… so we cram tighter to make room for another!

This is cozy to me. Let’s get close. Let’s get past the short talk and talk about life and how through Christ we have life to the full! The mission to tell others about Jesus is not only expected from the Pastor and vicar – my husband 🙂 – but also from us! We are growing through the Holy Spirit.

I wanted the hymn’s melody to be memorable and singable so that the words would get the focus. The melody is mostly stepwise without many leaps. We Are Forgiven! is not written in traditional four part style of hymnody but rather a melody accompanied by piano. All of the music at church is played on the piano instead of an organ so the hymn reflects that. The text is based off of  bible passages that support the themes mentioned above.

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Unauthorized copying, duplication or alteration of this composition is a violation of laws.

You can print a pdf document of the hymn by clicking it’s title here We Are Forgiven. All of my hymns are copyrighted. You should not alter the music in any way and give me, the composer, full recognition for the piece. If you would like to use the hymn publicly please ask permission by contacting me at thecozycomposer@gmail.com.

Merry Spring!

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
2 Corinthians 5:17

one day (and year) at a time

2013 rang in while I was working on a composition deadline
and the rest of my family were tucked soundly in their beds.
My New Year’s celebration (or lack of) may seem a bit boring
but my heart was filled with anticipation and wonder.

With the start of this new year I have a lot to be excited about:

– My son Archer turned one year old and received his first haircut :’)

– I was interviewed by artist, designer, and architect Corissa Nelson.
We talked about 
how women find time to be creative, especially moms.

– I completed my composition, Point Me To The Skies, for Martin Luther College’s wind symphony

– AND launched Holy Hen House, where friends and I are writing a Christian women’s blog
check it out!

New Year2

Do you remember how I posted about making goals with deadlines and sticking to them?
Well – I should have added – don’t put all the deadlines in the same week. Haha!
I have to admit I didn’t get much sleep and even stayed up as late (or early?) as 5:30am.
BUT I met all my deadlines and am working towards a whole new set of goals
that I could not have imagined one year ago.
How awesome!

With all of these opportunities I have to remind myself to discern my priorities.
What is God’s will? What is first? Him – the one thing needful.

Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city,
spend a year there, carry on business and make money.”
Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life?

You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”

James 4:13-15

I have about 10 days to start and complete my Epiphany text and hymn
but as always I am taking it one day at a time. A day of His grace.

the secret of living // hymn #3 melody and challenge

We made a Thanksgiving tree in our house this week. Yes, it may appear to be just a bunch of sticks in a jar with construction paper and leaf rubbings BUT on the back side of the leaves is a collection of our thankfulness.

I asked our three and a half year old daughter first, “Fiona what are some things you are thankful for?”. Her answer humbled me.

I heard her little voice squeak out “forgiveness”.

What?! Not family… or toys… or cake… but forgiveness!

How does my daughter already know the secret of living?!
How can she understand that on the bad days and good days, in everything, we can be content? Only God can work that.
She knows we have already won through Christ!

It is one of the biggest privileges of my life to watch my children’s faith grow. Often it is their faith I admire. Whenever I think a certain subject is too difficult for their minds to understand the Holy Spirit steps right in and shows me the wisdom that a child can have despite me. Thankful.

I knew that I wanted my Thanksgiving hymn to be more folk like. At first, I had the hymn at a faster tempo but decided to slow it down for now. I hope someday to hear a church sing this in worship accompanied by acoustic guitar, washboard, the fiddle and the tenor line sung loud!

So for your listening pleasure (or pain – ha!) I thought that it would be fun to sing it for you and add a voice part at each verse. I did not even attempt the bass line… thankfully there are only three verses. 🙂

Unauthorized copying, duplication or alteration of this composition is a violation of laws.

You can print a pdf document of the hymn by clicking it’s title here The Secret of Living. All of my hymns are copyrighted. You should not alter the music in any way and give me, the composer, full recognition for the piece. If you would like to use the hymn publicly please ask permission by contacting me at thecozycomposer@gmail.com.

Listen below for the midi file of the hymn alone without my singing.

Happy Thanksgiving!