Interesting times.

Not quite a week ago, I woke in the wee hours of the morning.  I was having an epiphany. Why was I so anxious, unsettled, stressed, fatigued?   Not that in most cases things were going badly.  By-and-large, the opposite. Good, even great things happening … or going to.  That was the problem, as I reflected.

So much my life (Dale’s too) was being impacted by future considerations: soon-to-be church amalgamation, retirement (early 2021) planning, Dale ostensibly finishing up in a few weeks, health and family considerations, travel plans for 2020 and 2021, ministry in 2020. I could go on.

I’d lost sight of some wisdom from a member of my previous congregation: to live in the moment; to make the best of the time and space I am currently in, or at most the day ahead – to rejoice and revel in that moment.

So … with Dale’s encouragement, and with the help of a presbytery self-led Heart-to-Heart self-led retreat resource, I went away for two nights. Yes, to the beach.  That’s always done it for me.  Via scripture, silence, waves crashing and much more, I calmed.  I settled.  Still a huge work in progress, I began living in the moment.

I had quite consciously resolve to not write a song while away.  Yet a song came … coming amid and out of my time away.  The song is called TAKE.   Check out the YouTube video above.


I Facebook-posted:

Went offline recently. Needed to. Things had become too much. Used a self-led retreat provided by presbytery. (Thanks heaps, Jenny Tymms​). Best 36 hours I’ve had for a while. A lot of sitting, praying, doing nothing, reading scripture, swimming with soothing water all around me, listening to the waves crashing on the shore, reflecting on what God might be saying (or not saying). Needing to start living in the moment (to0 much thinking about “future stuff” … ministry, retirement, family, travel, health), building firmer foundations, pondering what I need to let go of, realising God’s grace is sufficient. Hadn’t planned to write a song, but yes, I did. This is probably NOT a congregational worship song. 🙂 It’s called TAKE.

Here I am, open,
Take every part
Take all I am, Lord
Mind, soul and heart
Grace wash all over me
Hold me … within
Take all I offer
Renewing … begin.

Shine out your light, Lord
On spaces so dark
Make known your presence
When life’s pulled apart
There in the struggles
The wrestling, so much
‘Enough is enough’
There is your freedom
Your beauty, your touch

Live in each moment
Rejoice in the now
Consider the lilies
This moment, this hour
“Come to the water
Be thirsty no more” (0, to)
Find you each morning
to welcome, adore

Mmm ….
mmm ….
“Come to the water
Be thirsty no more” (O, to)
Find you each morning
to welcome, adore

© David MacGregor 2019


Without Love – two songs long – now with vocal

Hi. I preached on love a few weeks ago … love, compassion, respect, empathy, listening, grace, love some more … a few weeks back, the Sunday after our church in Tarragindi (Brisbane, Australia) voted to amalgamated into one congregation across four communities come 1 January 2020.  The vote was not unanimous but clear-cut.

My ministry colleagues and I felt clearly and passionately that pastoral care for, with and among our communities was/is paramount.  So I preached the “Sunday after” primarily on John 13:31-35

We connected also with Paul’s teaching on agape self-giving love … from Colossians 3 “Clothe yourself with Christ” and also his famous “love passage” in 1 Corinthians 13.

Amid a 36 hour time-out to do some intentional reflecting on the 2020 landscape and especially what it might mean for worship, yes – I wrote a “love song”, based on verses and themes from 1 Corinthians 13: Without Love.

At the time, I was really happy with it.   Some ways I still am, but in retrospect, and prompted by some loving, constructive feedback, I can see that song’s shortcomings -melody a bit too predictable, lyrics that were a bit forced.  I parked the song.

Two days later, yes – put it down to the Spirit, a new totally-different “love song” (once again based on 1 Corinthians 13) has been written – major key, same bridge, far more of a paraphrase … and so on.  I got great feedback!  Once again, I called it Without Love.

score.   lyrics. mp3 vocal

Dale’s just recorded a nice vocal track.


Without love
I’m no more than a noisy, old cymbal
Without love I’m no more than a banging door
Wisdom is nothing if love is gone
Who am I without love at all? Continue reading ‘Without Love – two songs long – now with vocal’

new song for Advent – “In This Time of Waiting”


No sooner back from two lovely weeks on our own and with great friends Jan & Glenn in Cairns, I’ve headed promptly into forward planning for November and December’s worship at my church.  That of course, includes the season of Advent – a time of waiting, watching, expecting, hoping and preparing … in readiness for celebrating Christ’s coming.  A special time.  For some years I’ve used the Cameroon song He Came Down That We May Have Love.

“Will I use that again this year?” I thought. No – inspiration came for something more reflective, while still making use of the four traditional advent theme of hope, peace, joy and love … a new verse sung each Sunday of Advent.

So … In This Time of Waiting  is written and ready for use.  See what you think!


score   mp3 backing

In this time of waiting

In this time of waiting
We will sing of hope
Hope in Jesus
who alone makes whole
In our expectation
We will sing of hope
Hearts of longing
We will sing of hope

In this time of waiting
We will sing of peace
Peace in Jesus:
Saviour, Prince of Peace
In our expectation
We will sing of peace
Hearts of longing
We will sing of peace

In this time of waiting
We will sing with joy
Joy in Jesus
Darkness won’t destroy
In our expectation
We bring sing with joy
Hearts of longing
We will sing with joy.

In this time of waiting
We bring hearts of love
Peace and hope and joy
Bound up in love
In our expectation
We bring hearts of love
Hearts of longing
We bring hearts of love

         David MacGregor
          © 2019 Willow Publishing

Vocal for my new Christmas song


I posted my new kid-friendly Christmas song two days back: Christmas ‘Round This Great Big World. I really value the great feedback folk have given me.

Just before we headed off to two weeks of holidays in Cairns, Dale added a great vocal. Check it out!



Christmas ‘Round this Great Big World

Key people from my church met a few nights ago to get the ball rolling for our annual Community Carols; a big event in the life of our church and community.  One of our team, Melissa brought to our meeting a “Christmas Around the World” type script.

After much discussing, reflecting and wondering, we decided we’d go with it, with plenty of revision work ahead.  We decided we would “up” the “around the world” theme, including some appropriate songs.  Plenty of individual songs and carols from various countries, but despite my Googling, my YouTubing, my Apple Musicking, I came up empty when it came to sourcing kid-friendly Christ-centred songs on that theme.

So … on Tuesday, driving home, the chorus came really quickly.

Christmas ’round this great big world
Sing your praise – make it heard!
Jesus comes: God’s own son
Gift of love for ev’ryone

I get home and start Googling for “Merry Christmas” in various countries. The two verses are the result of that.   Here’s a boppy melody-line backing track.   Hopefully Dale and I will work on a vocal track sooner rather than later.


leadsheet   lyrics   mp3 backing

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