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What I learned on Sabbatical

Eleven Things to Celebrate, Ponder, or Lament

Over the past fifteen months, it has been my joy to worship with more than forty congregations from twenty different denominations as part of our family’s sabbatical in southern California. It would take a book to unpack all the things we experienced. For now, here is a brief report on eleven things that we noticed—some to celebrate, some to ponder, some to lament.

Sanctification for Ordinary Life

There are many different ways to tell the story of the Protestant Reformation. A favorite centers on the heroic tale of Martin Luther, an Augustinian monk newly convicted by his discovery of Paul’s forensic
gospel, furiously hammering his ninety-five Theses to the church door in Wittenberg. The Reformation is thus launched by a kind of medieval blog post about justification by faith that becomes the catalyst for a theological

Worship in a Beatitude-shaped World

Learning from Psalm 73

Have you ever been in a ­worship service where the ­spoken, sung, or visual message was transformational? You leave convicted that the old way of doing, believing, or speaking was wrong and it is replaced with a new way. Such was the experience of the writer of Psalm 73.

In this article John Witvliet explores Psalm 73 and what it might teach us about worship today—and how it might provide an example for future issues of Reformed Worship. —JB

The Holy Spirit, Our Guide

A Pentecost Litany

This litany was used for the 2010 Pentecost worship service at our church. That service was held the same weekend as the local high school’s graduation ceremony, making the theme especially meaningful as graduates seek God’s guidance for the future.

Song: “Dwell in Me, O Blessed Spirit” PsH 427