Posts Tagged ‘congregational worship’

Just finished a new song called “Now Is the Time.” This is meant to be a fast praise song/opener for a contemporary worship service. I wanted to write something that captured the essence of making a quality decision to follow Jesus. I wanted a no-turning-back-once-and-for-all-I’ve-made-my-decision song where we could declare together “God, I’m done with doing things my way – it’s all about you from here on out.”

The bridge to this song was written by my good friend Jim Courtney. He got the lines “I lift my hands with purpose…” one Sunday morning when the praise team was in prayer before the service. He just handed me the scribbled lyrics and I immediately knew they’d make a great summarizing bridge to this song which, at that time, was about half-written.

Hope you enjoy. Its just a demo, but I think you can get the idea of the song. VFC’ers, you might wanna go ahead and learn this one. 🙂

Now is the Time

I’m ready to answer the call

I’m ready to give my all

I lay aside the weight of sin

I’m pushing on and pressing in

//

Now is the time, today is the day

I’m getting tired of being in the way

Oh Jesus, It’s all about You now

Now is the time for stepping aside

I’m leaving my independence and pride

Oh Jesus, It’s all about You now.

//

I’m ready to run the race

I’m ready to take my place

I lay aside the weight of sin

I’m pushing on and pressing in

//

I lift my hands with purpose

I raise my voice to sing

The life that I’ve been given

Becomes my offering

© Jamie Nunnally 2011

I just finished a new song called Hope Remains and I wanted to share it with everyone. Still trying to decide if its congregational and appropriate for Sunday morning worship or not. Feel free to weigh in. Our praise team at VFC was supposed to do it for special music last weekend but it just didn’t work out.

Lyrically, I wanted to focus on hope – that eternal, remaining gift from Heaven that seems to always take a backseat to faith and love (1 Cor. 13:13). I wanted to write an anthem that showed what it looked like when we emptied ourselves – our fears, questions and insecurities and just held on to the hope of our salvation through Jesus. The song ends with what is hopefully a very rousing and effective declaration that no matter what life hands us, we will cling to hope and let it be the anchor of our souls (Hebrews 6:19).

Musically, I tried to keep it simple enough to sing but interesting enough that it didn’t sound like everything else. The turnaround and bridge chords/melody are extremely pop-typical so I tried to make the verse and chorus chords/melody a little more unique. And I love the guitar part on top of the chorus (“All that I am…”) – it just sounds so pretty to me.

Ok, so here are the excuses: I recorded all the instruments in 2 hours and all vocals in 30 minutes so its not like this is gonna be high quality, people! But hey, it didn’t cost anything! 🙂 I hope you enjoy the song and pray that you’re encouraged to hold fast hope!

Hope Remains

Hope is rising up and strengthening my faith

The fear that held me back has now begun to fade

 //

All that I am I give away, ‘til nothing is left, just hope remains

//

Hope is sinking in and keeping me secure

And as I trust and wait, I patiently endure

//

All that I am I give away ‘til nothing is left, just hope remains

I’m confident that God will save and as I believe, my hope remains

//

So when the pressure’s building and I can feel the weight

I know my God still loves me I won’t hold back my praise

When disappointment finds me and things don’t go my way

My joy will not be stolen, no one can take my faith

And I won’t stop pursuing,  no I won’t be afraid

Though I’m not sure what’s coming I know that hope remains

//

Whoa, hope remains

Hey, I got an idea. BUY MY CD.

Yeah, you heard me right. After about a year of writing, re-writing, recording, re-recording, annoying my family, thinking about it, almost quitting, wash rinse and repeat, I finally have a solo CD out! Woo hoo! Yeah I’m pretty flippin excited. The CD is called “Forever” and has 14 tracks with over an hour of original worship music written for contemporary worship services, youth groups and Christian conferences.

Here are a few ways to get your grubby little hands on it, with more coming:

1) For those of you who want a physical copy, the easiest way to get one is to buy it directly from me at the CD table at my home church, VFC. Cost: $10

2) Want a physical copy but don’t live in Thomasville? Or maybe you live in T’ville but *gasp* don’t go to VFC? Click HERE to order the CD directly from me. You can pay via Credit/Debit card or Paypal and have it shipped right to you. Cost: $10 plus shipping. (Note: I don’t control shipping costs!)

3) Think physical CDs are so 2000 and late? Click HERE to go to CDbaby.com and download the album (or individual tracks) in MP3 format (it will work on iPods and MP3 players like Zune.) This is also a good place to listen to samples of each song. They also sell physical copies here. Cost: $9.99 for the whole digital album, $0.99 per individual track or $11.99 + shipping for the physical CD. (For a limited time you can download track 4, “You Are Wonderful” for FREE! Just sign in, select that song and select “download selected songs.” You’re welcome!) ***UPDATE: The digital album is now available on iTunes and Amazon.com!

4) Rayann’s Christian Bookstore in Thomasville sells it. Cost: $11.99+tax.

The music is also available on several online music streaming services like Rhapsody, Napster, eMusic, Liquid Digital, and Verizon V-cast.

If you don’t have any money and can’t buy the CD, that’s OK – I love you still. Just go to my music Myspace page and enjoy the songs I’ve posted up there for free. Yeah, free. You can’t beat that with a stick!

If you’re still reading, I want to share why I did this. I didn’t set out to make a CD. My original intent for recording was to get the songs that were in my head out into a format where the church praise team could learn them and play them for our worship services. After beginning the process, with much encouragement from friends and family and much wishy-washiness on my part, I felt like some of these songs were possibly decent enough to share with others. As a worship leader for many years, I sometimes have trouble finding songs for Sunday morning services that “work” for corporate worship. There are many great songs out there but a lot are either hard to sing or impossible to recreate with local church musicians. My prayer is to write spiritual anthems that everyone can worship to. I have no desire to be a worship performer. I just want to be a supplier. It has become a dream of mine to furnish God’s people with Body-songs they can bless Him with.

I am not trying to make a bunch of money from this – I just want cover my cost (this project has been funded by me personally) and possibly upgrade to some better recording equipment for the future. If your church would like to begin doing some of these songs for their services, nothing would please me more. In the coming weeks, I am planning on posting song lyrics and chord charts and eventually creating Youtube videos with lyrics.  Let me know if you wanna help.

Speaking of help, (are you seriously still reading this?) if you want to help get my music out there, all you have to do is share it. Buy a copy for your music minister or youth pastor. Go to CDbaby.com iTunes and Amazon.com and post a favorable review. Go to the Myspace page and each song has a share link where you can post it on Facebook, Twitter, or your personal blog. You can even email direct links of specific songs to your address book. Anything you’d be willing to do will be a huge help.

Its my genuine, heartfelt hope that you are blessed by this music. And it would be an even bigger blessing to me if you use these songs to bless our Father!

Cover Art

I am happy to report that in about two weeks, I’ll officially have a solo album out. Its been about a year in the making but it looks like its actually going to happen! Over 60 minutes of original worship music has been recorded, mixed and mastered and the final album art was just finished. It will be available for download on  CDBaby.com, iTunes and Amazon MP3. There will also be a website for direct CD sales and of course I’ll have some available at my home church, VFC.

The point of this CD is to supply songs to the body of Christ for corporate worship. My desire is to write singable, musically relevant, yet spiritually potent songs that a church congregation can learn easily and use for praise and worship services. Please pray that God would use these songs to bless His people and that we, in turn, can use them to bless Him back.  Look for more info in the near future!

Jamie Nunnally – Forever

Cover Art

Track Listing

1. Lord We Worship You

2. Adonai

3. Forever

4. You Are Wonderful

5. You Are So Good to Me

6. Be My Everything

7. So Close To Me

8. By His Blood

9. We Pray

10. Lord I Trust You

11. Save Me

12. Found in You

13. Take Me Away

14. Glory in the Highest

This is one of the most confusing songs I’ve ever written. After being challenged by a line in a book by Bill Johnson, I had started praying that God would allow me to introduce one of Heaven’s songs to Earth. Several weeks later I literally woke up with the chorus to this song in my head. I jumped out of bed all groggy and recorded a scratchy-voiced sample so I wouldn’t forget it. I knew I had never heard it before but it seemed so familiar. I’m fully aware this could be interpreted as flaky at best and pure arrogance at worst but I genuinely believe this chorus is a heavenly song. The problem is, what do I do with something like that?

I began to sing just the chorus as a “tag” on the end of other songs during worship and ministry times at church and could really sense purpose behind it. Wanting to use it somehow, I made it the bridge to another song that I had been working on called “I Am Not Ashamed” but in the end, it just didn’t seem to fit. Then, I wrote verses and a bridge around it and turned it into a song about praising God regardless of the trials life can bring, a la “Praise You in the Storm” by Casting Crowns. It wasn’t bad. The problem was, while it was worshipful, it wasn’t a worship song – more like something you’d hear for offering music. Finally, I wrote the song in its current congregational worship form and feel really comfortable with it.

Musically, I decided to make this a quieter piano-based song for the recording instead of the typical full-band effort. Once I introduce it to our congregation we’ll probably have more instrumentation but for now, I like the quiet intimacy of the piano.  Special thanks to my older brother Sam for playing the keyboard on this as I play the piano like Joaquin Phoenix raps.

You Are So Good to Me

When You found me I was unworthy

I earned judgment but You loved mercy

Now your grace falls and makes me holy

You’re calling me

You’re drawing me to You

//

God Almighty, Lord of Glory

You are so good to me, so good to me

//

You’re not looking for perfection

Your desire is connection

So now I’m changing my direction

You’re calling me

You’re drawing me closer

//

Your thoughts are higher

Your ways are better

Your love is deeper

I’m bound no longer

© Jamie Nunnally 2010

“You Are Wonderful” is probably the most well-received of any of the worship songs I’ve written to date. I was playing around with the verse chords one day before music practice at church and one of the singers heard it and said “ooh that’s pretty.” Later, when I  sat down to write, those chords came back to mind. The original version of this song had the exact same verse/pre-chorus music and lyrics but with a totally different chorus altogether. I had titled it “You’re a Miracle” and was trying to explore the idea of how Jesus had done the impossible for us. I excitedly played the first draft for my wife and I believe her exact words after hearing it were, “You’re a miracle – really? Sounds like the title of a Christmas musical.” Thanks, sweetheart. She was right, though – it stunk. I went back to the drawing board, hammered out some new lyrics and paired them with the  current chorus music.

Soon after its completion, I introduced it to my home church where they received it really well. Shortly after that,  I did it at a women’s conference where I lead worship annually and I remember being surprised how quickly everyone picked it up on first listen. We still do this one regularly at VFC and every year I go back to the women’s conference, someone requests it. I pray that as you listen you’ll let God captivate your heart and fascinate your soul. Special thanks to Dana King for singing alto on this recording.

You Are Wonderful

Great and mighty, awesome, holy

You are to me

Loving, gracious, just and righteous

You are, my King

//

All the earth declares Your beauty

And I proclaim who You are to me

//

You are wonderful, kind and beautiful

You captivate my heart, You fascinate my soul

You wash away the shame, Your mercy makes me whole

Jesus, You are Lord, strong and powerful

High above the earth, God of endless worth

You are wonderful

© Jamie Nunnally

I have a growing desire to write congregational praise and worship songs for the body of Christ. I don’t wanna just write Christian songs for the radio. I want to write anthems that the Body of Christ can sing in unity back to their King on Sunday mornings. Its really a dream of mine – to be a supplier of songs to the church for corporate worship. “Lord We Worship You” is my latest attempt for a opening/upbeat song to be used in a contemporary worship service.

I had been telling God during my prayer time that I didn’t want to ever get used to Him. Familiarity breeds contempt, as the saying goes, and most “spirit-filled” churches consider familiarity with God as not only attainable but desirable. But I wonder how often we get used to God and consider His presence just a normal thing? What a horrible thought! I don’t ever want my interaction with God to be simple routine. I also have always been intrigued with the idea of God’s fragrance as written about in 2 Corinthians 2:14. Just like a hunter may track the scent of his prey, so should the lovers of Jesus pursue His fragrance with restless desire. Its not always easy to crystallize complex thoughts like these into a simple, singable song. Hopefully, this song is successful, though, and can be used for a body of believers to proclaim, “We’re here to worship you – to pursue you and guard our hearts against routine and complacency.”

Lord We Worship You

//

Here before You, the broken and mended adore You

We pursue You, the humble and hopeful run to You

With all our worship, all our praise

//

Here in Your presence, Lord we worship You

We chase your fragrance, Lord we worship You

//

We don’t ever want to get used to Your presence

So we seek You like the first time that we met You

With all our worship, all our praise

//

Here in this moment, Lord we worship You

We won’t be silent, Lord we worship You.

© Jamie Nunnally 2010