By Tawnya Hons
“Praise the LORD, O my soul. O Lord my God, you are very great; you are clothed with splendor and majesty.” -Psalm 104:1
“I will sing to the LORD all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.” Psalm 104:33
“How great is our God, sing with me, how great is our God, and all will see how great, how great is our God.” -Chris Tomlin
One of the things I have been doing this last year is researching the story behind the songs we sing in our worship services. In preparation for August 29th service I googled “How Great is Our God story behind”.
I read this brief interview with Chris Tomlin regarding the song: https://www.songfacts.com/facts/chris-tomlin/how-great-is-our-god.
The song started with him on his couch, in his apartment reading the word of God. Later, in discussing producing an album with Ed Cash, the song was continued with Ed’s addition of the bridge (You’re the name above all names…). Then as I continued my research I discovered the world version of this song.
Chris Tomlin had taken the song on tour around the world. In the different countries he would translate the chorus as best he could and sing it to the people. Once they understood what he was doing, they would respond with the chorus in their own language. This inspired a version of the song that is sung in Hindi, Indonesian, Russian, Spanish, Portuguese, Zulu, Afrikaans and Mandarin. You can listen to this version sung live here:
Many of us wonder, what is my purpose? What impact can my life have in the world? Where do I even start? The starting point for Chris Tomlin was on his couch, reading the word. What came next was his response to what he read. For him it caused him to sing the chorus of a song. You may respond to this, but I can’t sing to save my life! That’s great for him, he’s famous. I agree, he is unique in the world. But so are you. I don’t know what your response will be. The encouragement I give you through is simply read God’s word, and pay attention to your response. The body (the church) needs you to become active in this so that it can function wholly and completely.
That was the amazing thing I saw in this story. It started with one man, responding to God’s word. He shared his response and another man joined him, adding something he hadn’t thought of. Then he shared what the two had made with crowds and they contributed what they had. Chris Tomlin’s response at the end of the video posted above shows how this has impacted his life and also what it looks like to share your response to God’s word and then be given the privilege to see it come back full (Isaiah 55:11). How great is our God.
I look forward to learning and contributing to your “song”.