Skip to content

Here's a song I wrote for a holiday club for 7-11 year olds. We called it Shipwrecked. 

We turned the church into a desert island and we were all washed ashore having run our ship aground.  The Captain had put us in charge of his incredible ocean liner - he'd built it with his son.  He gave us the wheel and said he'd see us when we got to Paradise Isle, all we had to do was sail straight.  Of course we chose to head off to Dead Man's Cove instead and we came unstuck.  Mercifully, the Captain decides to send his son through the treacherous waters to rescue us and bring us home.  The question is, will we trust the son?

We based the week around John 3:16 and had studies in John each day. 

One thing I really liked about the week was how sin was taught as unbelief.  Basically we taught about our dire position before God - shipwrecked through not trusting Him in the first place.  But then we taught salvation and then the big sin was rejecting the rescue.  On the final day we had one of the castaways deciding to stay on at Dead Man's Cove and make the best of it while others go with the son.  The order of teaching was essentially:

Creation

Fall (which was essentially caused by unbelief),

Rescue

then

Sin (as rejection of rescue) or Salvation (as receiving rescue)

I found this to be a refreshingly Johannine way of teaching the gospel.  Note how John 3:16 goes on:

16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 

There is a condemnation already for not believing in Jesus but it remains as we remain in unbelief (same thing in v36).  The question we are left with is not 'what have we done with the law?' but 'what have we done with the Saviour?'  See Jesus' definition of sin in John 16:8-9:

...when the Spirit comes, He will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment:  concerning sin, because they do not believe in me.

Sin is unbelief.  It's not, finally, the ins and outs of how you shipwrecked yourself on Dead Man's Cove.  At the end of the day, sin is your inexplicable preference for Dead Man's Cove over the Son, your Rescuer.

.

Anyway, here's the song - sound's not brilliant but you get the idea.

.

Going to a faraway country.
Sailing to a faraway land.
Captain say "See you in paradise,
I'll join you just as fast as I can."

But then we thought we knew better.
Then we thought to change our tack.
Then we sailed our ship into Dead Man's Cove
Don't think we'll ever make it back.

We are shipwrecked, Oh shipwrecked
Nothing here to make us smile
We are shipwrecked, o-oh shipwrecked
Stranded on a desert isle.

Captain send word to greet us.
Can't believe we went off track.
Now he send his son to meet us.
He said he's going to bring us back.

We are shipwrecked, Oh shipwrecked
Nothing here to make us smile
We are shipwrecked, o-oh shipwrecked
Stranded on a desert isle.

The son came a long, long distance,
Fight through many a trial.
He stood on the shore, said "Climb aboard,
I take you to paradise isle!"

We are rescued, O rescued
Covered in a beautiful smile
We are rescued, o-oh rescued,
Sailing now to paradise isle.

God so loved the world,
He gave His only Son.
Whoever believes in Him receives
Eternal life and shall not die

We are rescued, O rescued
Covered in a beautiful smile
We are rescued, o-oh rescued,
Sailing now to paradise isle. 

 .

Also, here's an arrangement of a three-part round to teach John 3:16.  It sounds quite good when you get all three parts coming together but the recording's just got me, so you'll have to try it out yourselves.

.

UPDATE 2016: Here are my most current kids songs. (Below is from 8 years ago)

 

I've been dipping my toe into writing Kids Song recently (see bottom of sidebar).  I've recorded them all as wma's on a little handheld speech recorder and the quality on every level is dodgy.  But some people have enjoyed them.  So...

Go here for my Jonah song featuring the greatest guitar chord ever: E7#9 (otherwise known as the Jimi chord).

And here's one called the Egypt Song.  I wrote it for some friends who were moving as a family.  The idea is that Jesus had to move to Egypt and back as a kid.  And now that He's moved to heaven, the One on the throne knows what moving's like.  That kinda thing.  I think we need to sing more about Christ's vicarious humanity and the ascension - so here's my attempt:

When Jesus moved to Egypt land
A long long time ago
His mum and daddy took him there
And so He had to go

When Jesus moved to Egypt land
The bad guys tried to chase
So they took Him down to foreign town
A very strange place

When Jesus moved from Egypt land
Back to Galilee
He had to make some brand new friends
And learn new ways to be

When Jesus moved to heaven's throne
He went there as our friend
He hears us when we speak to Him
He loves us to the end

So as you go to another place
You'll never be alone
The One who knows what moving's like
Is seated on the throne.

So when your scared or when your sad
You know just what to do
Tell your Friend upon the throne
Cos He knows sad times too.

 

Here's the audio.

.

 I'm preaching through Jonah this August.  Every service is all-age so I've dredged up a song I wrote a couple of years ago.  Here's how it sounds (click here for a rough recording).  And here are the words - the kids sing (shout!) all the bolded words:

.

Verse 1: 

 

God said ‘GO – to Nineveh

All those baddies I want to win-over.’

 

Jonah said ‘NO – not Nineveh

All those people are terrible sin-lovers.’

 

God said ‘GO!’

Jonah said ‘NO!’

The storm went BLOW

Jonah said ‘THROW!’

And down he GO!

Into the Depths of the Sea!

 

 

Verse 2:

 

God said GO – to a giant fish

Save my prophet before he gets smelly

 

The fish said OH what a lovely dish

Swallowed him whole so he lived in his belly

 

God said GO!

The fish swam LOW

Through the FLOW

Jonah said WHOAH!

And down he GO!

Into the belly of the fish!

 

 

Verse 3:

 

Jonah said OH – what a mess

I’ve done things my way I must confess

 

I’m so LOW – I could die

But even now God hears my cry

 

Jonah said ‘OH

You’ve brought me LOW

I’m sorry SO

Save my SOUL.’

And up he GO

Spat up onto the beach.

 

 

Verse 4:

 

God said ‘GO – once again

Nineveh needs your word to repent.’

 

Jonah said ‘OH – alright

I’ll tell them there’s Woe if they don’t get it right.’

 

So Jonah said WOE,

Cos God says ‘NO’

The people went ‘OH!

We’re sorry SO

Save our SOUL!’

And God saved every one!

 

 

Verse 5:

 

Jonah said ‘NO – I guessed

God would have mercy if they confessed.

 

‘God’s so SLOW to judge

He loves to forgive, never bears a grudge.’

 

God said ‘GO!’

Jonah said ‘NO!’

But God changed ROLE

He washed their SOUL

Whiter than SNOW

Cos God’s the best preacher of all!

 

5

I've just preached on Hebrews 2 this Sunday.  "He shared in their humanity so that by His death..."  Or again, "He had to be made like His brothers... in order that He might make atonement." (v14,17)

.

Or to quote Kim Fabricius' provocative post: "The crib and the cross are cut from the same wood."

.

See the crib and you've seen the cross ahead of time.  You've seen a Man falling, there's only one outcome possible.

 .

Anyway, it got me waxing lyrical.  Not finished, but here's a sketch of a poem:

.

God in a manger
Defenceless, enfleshed
Immanuel crying
And fighting for breath

God in a manger
Wriggling and raw
Laid out on the wood
Enthroned on the straw

God at Golgotha
Pierced in His flesh
Immanuel crying
And fighting for breath

God at Golgotha
Forsaken and lost
Stretched out on the wood
Enthroned on the cross

.

You can read/hear the sermon here.

.

Anyway, probably won't get a chance to blog for the next week, so let me wish you all a blessed Christmas

May we in darkness rejoice in our Glorious Light.

.

All but cursed, the men of dust,

From garden’d bliss dejected thrust.

Cast down to blood and tangling thorn,

Flat-faced in mud, bereft, forlorn. 

.

Unmoved as ages droned along,

Resigned to sighing pity’s song.

To mouth their sadness with each breath,

In love with self and sin and death. 

.

Then glancing back, a glimmering sight,

Through gnarling weeds, a shaft of light.

The tree untouched, of matchless type,

Engorged with life, effulgent, ripe. 

.

It lay beyond the thorny wall,

A tantalizing siren’s call.

All wrong reversed, all tears made good,

All hunger filled with holy food. 

.

New drive possessed the men of dust,

They set to work with primal thrust.

To have the fruit at any cost,

If failing this then all is lost. 

.

And so they pressed against the wall

Of thorns and blades and jagged sprawl.

Their eyes aglow with mad intent,

Their bodies pierced and torn and rent. 

.

Their flesh sliced through by razor wire,

Could not abate their one desire.

No hurt could halt their desperate zeal.

“Once through, the tree alone will heal!” 

.

Their bodies strewn along the route,

Their hands outstretched to reach the fruit.

Yet none would cross this death-divide,

Their hope lay on the thorny side. 

.

Behind them in the other way,

Another tree for sinners lay.

It stood apart and unacquired,

Gnarled and grim and undesired.  

.

It did not catch the eye of men,

Who sought a ripeness there and then.

Yet this one pledged a golden yield,

To all who ceased and turned and kneeled. 

.

For hanging lone across its form,

The Lord of Life enthroned in scorn,

Was off’ring all a bloodied balm,

With up-raised voice and out-stretched arm. 

.

Thus from the midst of cursèd death,

Is raised His call with rasping breath.

“Come every man, leave off your quest

Find life within my piercèd breast.” 

.

“He lies!” they shrieked through raging tears,

They scoffed and mocked with angry jeers.

What life could this cadaver give?

What guarantee that we shall live?” 

.

“Just this” He said with pity’s call,

“I’ve come direct from o’er the wall.

All bliss that moves your frenzied glee,

Such fountains first begin in Me.” 

.

At once they spluttered daft disdain,

“No wounded Man or tree of pain,

Will be our well or way of life.

We’re free! You pledge us only strife!” 

.

“Dear friends!” He pleas, “regard your plight,

Your freedom bonds you, blinds your sight.

Your wounds for self, for self are loss,

Come lose them in my wounded cross. 

.

“Your life is death, My death is gain,

Now trust the word of Paschal slain.

Come hide in Me through darkest night,

Soon heaven’s dawns shine fresh delight.” 

.

Just so His promise stands above

All men, inquiring which they love:

To seek the fruit and Him defy,

Or heed Life’s call to “Come and die!”

.

All but cursed, the men of dust,

From garden’d bliss dejected thrust.

Cast down to blood and tangling thorn,

Flat-faced in mud, bereft, forlorn. 

.

Unmoved as ages droned along,

Resigned to sighing pity’s song.

To mouth their sadness with each breath,

In love with self and sin and death. 

.

Then glancing back, a glimmering sight,

Through gnarling weeds, a shaft of light.

The tree untouched, of matchless type,

Engorged with life, effulgent, ripe. 

.

It lay beyond the thorny wall,

A tantalizing siren’s call.

All wrong reversed, all tears made good,

All hunger filled with holy food. 

.

New drive possessed the men of dust,

They set to work with primal thrust.

To have the fruit at any cost,

If failing this then all is lost. 

.

And so they pressed against the wall

Of thorns and blades and jagged sprawl.

Their eyes aglow with mad intent,

Their bodies pierced and torn and rent. 

.

Their flesh sliced through by razor wire,

Could not abate their one desire.

No hurt could halt their desperate zeal.

“Once through, the tree alone will heal!” 

.

Their bodies strewn along the route,

Their hands outstretched to reach the fruit.

Yet none would cross this death-divide,

Their hope lay on the thorny side. 

.

Behind them in the other way,

Another tree for sinners lay.

It stood apart and unacquired,

Gnarled and grim and undesired.  

.

It did not catch the eye of men,

Who sought a ripeness there and then.

Yet this one pledged a golden yield,

To all who ceased and turned and kneeled. 

.

For hanging lone across its form,

The Lord of Life enthroned in scorn,

Was off’ring all a bloodied balm,

With up-raised voice and out-stretched arm. 

.

Thus from the midst of cursèd death,

Is raised His call with rasping breath.

“Come every man, leave off your quest

Find life within my piercèd breast.” 

.

“He lies!” they shrieked through raging tears,

They scoffed and mocked with angry jeers.

What life could this cadaver give?

What guarantee that we shall live?” 

.

“Just this” He said with pity’s call,

“I’ve come direct from o’er the wall.

All bliss that moves your frenzied glee,

Such fountains first begin in Me.” 

.

At once they spluttered daft disdain,

“No wounded Man or tree of pain,

Will be our well or way of life.

We’re free! You pledge us only strife!” 

.

“Dear friends!” He pleas, “regard your plight,

Your freedom bonds you, blinds your sight.

Your wounds for self, for self are loss,

Come lose them in my wounded cross. 

.

“Your life is death, My death is gain,

Now trust the word of Paschal slain.

Come hide in Me through darkest night,

Soon heaven’s dawns shine fresh delight.” 

.

Just so His promise stands above

All men, inquiring which they love:

To seek the fruit and Him defy,

Or heed Life’s call to “Come and die!”

.

Twitter widget by Rimon Habib - BuddyPress Expert Developer