Updated: Oct 4, 2022
You can find a YouTube playlist here with many of the songs suggested below.
The Psalm can offer us a gathering theme of praise to the God who formed us and knows us completely. The wonderfully lively Today I awake (CH 211), Every new morning (CH 213) sung to Bunessan, and Womb of life and source of being (CH 118) all pick up on these themes from the psalm while you could go with a more general song a praise to the Creator with songs such as Uyai mose / Come all you people (CH 757), Heaven’s voice brings the dawn (Resound), God of wonders (MP 1089 / CCLI) and Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of creation (CH 124).
Today’s psalm is one of the most popular for songwriters so there are lots of options available. O God, you search me and you know me (CH 97) and You are before me, God, you are behind (CH 96) are both excellent metrical settings in contemporary language while In you O Lord I am found (Kimbrough), Lord, you have searched me (Resound) and Were I to cross from land to land (New Scottish / Grace) would all work well for bands. It’s also interesting to note Fearfully and wonderfully made (CCLI) and Fearfully, Wonderfully Made (link) which use v14 as their main hook.
You can respond to the Gospel with songs which focus on becoming disciples Jesus - including giving all our possessions - with Take my life, Lord, let it be (CH 502 / MP 624), Will you come and follow me (CH 533) and Lord, you have come to the seashore (CH 532) all well known options while Simple living (MP 1251 / CCLI / Townend) could be an alternative which also highlights other passages on a similar theme. For a more explicit focus on v27 you could use ‘Take up your cross,’ the Saviour said (CH 402 / MP 935) or Jesus you have called us (Resound).
The Epistle could link to songs of reconciliation, unity and openness to each other such as Break not the circle of enabling love (CH 206), God of freedom, God of justice (CH 263) and We are one in the Father’s love (CCLI). It might be too literal for some readings but No longer slaves (CCLI) could link to the change in status of Onesimus from slave to brother while Sisters and brothers (Gordon) also picks up this theme.
The passage from Jeremiah has inspired a number of popular worship songs such as The potter’s hand (MP 1034 / CCLI), Change my heart O God (MP 69 / CCLI) and Canvas and clay (CCLI), with the latter also incorporating imagery from Psalm 139. Spirit of the living God (CH 619 / MP 613) is an option that is also widely known with the refrain of “break me, melt me, mould me, fill me.” Re-form us God (GIA) is a contemporary hymn inspired by this text and you can consider a tune such as The Rowan Tree if you just want to introduce new lyrics. Song of the Prophets (CCLI / Hymnary) is a great hymn for exploring different prophets by singing the appropriate verses (use verses 1 and 3 to fit this week) and can be sung to Kingsfold.
The call to discipleship from the Gospel is a strong sending theme and you could end with hymns such as O Jesus, I have promised (CH 644 / MP 501), Lord of creation, to you be all praise (CH 500 / MP 40) and I, the Lord of sea and sky (CH 251), lively choruses such as Ewe thina / We walk his way (WGRG) from South Africa and Sent by the Lord am I (CH 250) from Nicaragua, or worship songs such as I will follow (CCLI) and Mission’s Flame (CCLI).