Worship is a way of life that takes place not just at 11:00 on Sunday morning, but every other hour of the week (John 4:20-24). Through this “Call to Worship,” we want to share some thoughts about worship, scripture verses, hymns, and songs to teach and encourage you as you seek His face daily and then hopefully together with us on Sunday!


Maria Currey, Assistant Director of Music – Traditional

Hymn Highlight – “His Name Is Wonderful”

~ From an interview by Lindsay Terry of The Augustine Record.

I have interviewed scores of songwriters, but no interview has been more significant and meaningful than the one in the late 1980s with Audrey Mieir of California.

It was in one of the small California churches that her most famous song was written. Audrey was 43 years of age at that time. It all happened on Christmas Day — on a Sunday. Following is Audrey’s story as she told it to me:

“We wanted to do something special in our little church, Bethel Union Church in Duarte, California. We were using the young people in a Christmas play. Mary was a teenage girl and the angels were young boys. The ‘baby’ was a doll.”

“The whole place smelled of pine boughs, which we used to decorate the church. The atmosphere was charged. It seemed that the whole room was filled with the presence of the angels of God. People were wiping tears away, remembering many other Christmases gone by.”

“At the conclusion of our play I took my place on a pew near the front. The pastor, Dr. Luther Mieir, my brother-in-law, stood up and slowly lifted his hands toward heaven and said, ‘His name is Wonderful!’ Those words electrified me. I immediately began writing in the back of my Bible. As I wrote I was thinking that God has something he wants said. I wrote a simple chorus and I sang it that night for the young people around the piano. They sang it immediately. It wasn’t hard for them to learn.”

Audrey later said, “At that moment I did not foresee the ministry one little song of praise could have. I never dreamed that I would hear it sung in a TV station in Taiwan, in the great churches of Sweden, all through Korea and the Philippines or in the rooftop schools of Hong Kong, where it would be lifted heavenward by thousands of students. My fondest dream could never conceive of it being sung in four languages at the Vatican in Rome in the presence of the Pope, or that I would hear it sung in the Garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus was crucified, an experience that was joy unspeakable!”

“His name is wonderful,
His name is wonderful,
His name is wonderful,
Jesus my Lord.

He is the mighty King,
Master of everything,
His name is wonderful,
Jesus, my Lord.

He’s the great Shepherd,
The Rock of all ages,
Almighty God is He.
Bow down before Him,
Love and adore Him,
His name is wonderful!
Jesus my Lord.”

Audrey said of the writing of this song that she considered herself only a channel, and not otherwise involved. She gave God all of the glory for using her to give the world such a song of praise.

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given:
and the government shall be upon His shoulder:
and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor,
The Mighty God, The everlasting Father,
the Prince of Peace.” — Isaiah 9:6



Kerri Roberts, Assistant Director of Music – Contemporary

You stay the same through the ages
Your love never changes
There may be pain in the night
But joy comes in the morning
And when the oceans rage
I don’t have to be afraid
Because I know that You love me
Your love never fails

You make all things work together for my good
You make all things work together for my good

Continuing our series on the Hebrew words for praise found in scripture, today we will look at the exuberant word “shabach.” The lyrics to the well-known worship song above beautifully encompass this action verb!

Shabach means “to shout, to address in a loud tone, to command, to triumph, to laud, praise, commend”

With this song, we have the clear opportunity to shout out or laud God’s sovereign power over our lives, and all the universe, in singing “You make all things work together for my good!” A few of the scriptures where we find the word shabach are:

Psalm 63:3
Because your steadfast love is better than life,
my lips will praise (shabach) you.

Psalm 147:12
Praise (shabach) the LORD, O Jerusalem!
Praise your God, O Zion!

Psalm 145:4
One generation shall commend (shabach) your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts.

Anyone recognize the final verse listed? Yes! That is the theme verse over NEPC’s Legacy of Faith Campaign! The word “commend” in the ESV is also translated “praise” in other Bible versions.

This word implies testimony or spoken praise. It does not mean simply being loud, but more the idea of putting one’s whole self into the action, of being completely uninhibited. The phrase “shout unto the Lord” can be understood as the action of shabach. I would conjecture that for most of us in this western, civilized and educated culture, this is the most difficult of the “praise” commands in scripture for us to carry out. How often do we actually allow ourselves to be uninhibited about anything related to worship? It feels improper. But we do it in other ways. The easiest example I can muster is that of praising my children when they’ve done something well. After watching them perform well in a show or sporting event I would most certainly, with no inhibition, praise them with phrases like, “That was amazing!” or “Oh wow, you handled that ball so skillfully, and I couldn’t believe that amazing pass you made!” or “Goodness, your voice was beautiful! You brought me to tears!” I would certainly not just stand looking at them. We are most uninhibited with those we love the most. How much more so should we, as His children, be able to “shabach” our great God, who created us uniquely and precisely, and loves us so perfectly?

Perhaps there are times when it is appropriate for God’s children to shout His praise! Certainly, passing down the faithfulness and power of God from one generation to the next should excite some loud tones and uninhibited praise! For clearly He has done great things and great is His name!

NEPC Contemporary Setlist