6 More Children's Music Resources

UncategorizedJared Kennedy1 Comment

In 2009, I posted about 5 great children's music resources. Here are a few more that I've come across since that time: Big Stories for Little Ones by Rain for Roots is my favorite album of this bunch. It combines the writing talents of Sally Lloyd-Jones with the music of Sandra McCracken, Ellie Holcomb, Flo Paris, and Katy Bowser. The result is a record of God-centered folksy lullabies that you'll love. The album is only available for download at their website.

Since 2009, Sovereign Grace Ministries has added two albums to their collection. Walking with the Wise is the their latest. It joins  To Be Like Jesus (June 2009) and Awesome God (Aug. 2004). The latest CD unpacks truths from the book of Proverbs. It teaches us that being wise is more than just knowing a lot and being smart. It involves fearing the Lord and believing that Jesus is the Son of God who died for our sins and rose from the dead so that we could be forgiven and follow Him. That kind of wisdom is more important than anything in the world. The CD contains lead sheets, guitar charts, and accompaniment tracks to all the songs. You can buy it from the Sovereign Grace online store, or download the MP3 album.

I'm a big fan of the Ask Me Whooo catechism CDs from Diana Beach Batarseh. Catechism is simply using a question and answer format to teach basic Bible truth. One of the most famous catechisms is the Westminster Shorter Catechism, written in the 1600s by English and Scottish Divines. In the late 1800s, Joseph Engels adapted this body of work into what we call the Children's First Catechism. More recently, Great Commission Publications adapted Engel's work to make it more accessible to moderns, and Diana has used GCP's wording in 74 catechism songs.

Jesus Saves Sinners by Village Kids. In 2010, the Village Church released their  a Kids EP containing 5 original songs that teach children about the character and nature of God and His plan to save sinners through Jesus Christ.  These songs correspond with the five foundational truths taught as a part of Village’s preschool ministry, The Little Village--(1) Jesus Came to Save Sinners, (2) God is Good, (3) God is in Charge of Everything, (4) God Wants to Talk with Us, (5) God Made Everything. It's a great little gospel-centered Texas/Country/Rock album for kids. Here is the link on iTunes.

The Rizers is a group of musicians from Mars Hill Church in Seattle who have created a bunch of scripture memory songs from the NIV, set to synth-heavy, punk dance sounds. The “band” is Gracie, Matty C., Ayo, Mei Mei, and Johnny Danger. Like Gorillaz, The Rizers are a made-up cartoon band with invented personalities for each member. They have two albums currently: Meet the Rizers and Rise Up!  Check out Tyler Ratliff's review of the second album.

Finally, Jesus Wants My Heart by Daniel Renstrom is a CD written for the Treasuring Christ children's ministry curriculum. The music is contemporary and gospel-centered. It is also available on iTunes.

Joseph Liturgy



Leader 1: "Hi, I'm Mr./Ms. (First name)" Leader 2: "Hi, I'm Mr./Ms. (First name)"

Leader 1: Everybody stand up! We’re going to sing about God’s great love for us!

1. "“Your Love," words and music by Bob Kauflin, ©2004 Sovereign Grace Praise (BMI). Sovereign Grace Music, a division of Sovereign Grace Ministries. From Awesome God. 

Leader 2: That song talked about God’s amazing love for us. He sent Jesus to die on the cross for our sins, and then He raised Him from the dead. Everyone who trusts Jesus to take away their sins lives with God as His friend. God loves us by making a way for our sins to be forgiven.

God also loves us by watching over us. He is always with us, and we can never get away from Him. He knows when we’re in trouble or when we get scared or need help. Let’s sing a song about God’s love as He watches over us and is always with us.

2. "You Are Always With Me," words and music by Mark Altrogge, ©2004 Sovereign Grace Praise (BMI). Sovereign Grace Music, a division of Sovereign Grace Ministries. From Awesome God. 

Leader 1: When we trust in Jesus to take away our sins, we become part of God’s family. We become His children. And if God is our father, we don’t have to worry, because He’ll take care of us!

This is the new song we started to learn last week. It’s about how we don’t have to worry about our problems, or about scary things, or about anything, as long as we’re God’s children. We can laugh about the things that used to scare us, because we know God is bigger than all our trouble.

3. “Laugh,” Words and Music by Jamie Barnes ©2012 Sojourn Music

Laugh at my troubles. Laugh at my pain. Laugh in the face of all that scares me. 

Laugh at the devil. Laugh at the dark. Laugh 'cause I know that the Light has come.

Laugh 'cause he loves me. Laugh 'cause he's mine. He's done so many things that I'm laughin' all the time.

Leader 2: We’re going to pray now. When we talk to God, we need to pay attention to Him, so everybody fold your hands and close your eyes and be still and pay attention to God; we’re going to talk to Him now.

“God, thank You for being with us all the time. You watch over us and protect us. Thank You that You turn every bad thing into something good for everyone who trusts in Your Son Jesus. Please give us grace and help us to trust You whenever we are afraid. Amen.”

God is so loving, and takes such good care of us! He loves us so much He sent Jesus to pay the price for all the times we disobey Him. This good news is so good, we should tell everybody we know about the love God shows in sending Jesus. Let’s go and tell the world about Him!

4. “Go (Matthew 28:19),” written by Jason Houser © 2007 Big Songs of Extreme/Big Loud Songs (ASCAP) Admin. by Big Loud Bucks. Lyrics taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION® NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. From The Power of Encouragement.

Leader 1: Thank you for singing and worshiping the Lord with us today! It’s time to find to your teachers and follow them back to your classes.

Meet Tyler Ratliff! Our SojournKids Music Director

UncategorizedJared Kennedy1 Comment

We’re continuing our staff profiles this week with the introduction of Sojourn intern, Tyler Ratliff. Tyler does an amazing job leading our SojournKids Music teams weekly. He schedules the Midtown team, writes the kids liturgy for our teams across our campus network, and he leads the kids band that plays at Midtown on Sundays. I'm really thankful for Tyler. He has always been an amazing musician, and he has grown into an equally amazing children's worship leader. Tyler describes himself this way: "I grew up in Eastern Kentucky and came to Louisville to attend Boyce College for a music degree. I found Sojourn in my senior year and stuck around after graduation. In my spare time, I spend my time like the average American 20-something: reading Patristic literature (that's the Early Church Fathers) and listening to post-rock and ambient music."

1. What is your current role with SojournKids? I'm the Director of Kids' Worship. I choose songs for the kids to sing on Sunday, write a corresponding liturgy, and recruit and schedule musicians to lead the music. I lead Kids' worship songs at Sojourn Midtown during the morning services.

2. What is your favorite part of your job? I love it when kids put things together and answer questions in words we didn't teach them:

Me: "Does anybody know what grace is?"

Three-year-old: "Grace is when we sin but God still loves us!"

That's what this is about.

3. What hopes, dreams, and aspirations do you have? I'd love to be as self-sustaining as possible someday-to grow and raise my own food, and to learn as much as I can about traditional methods for doing it. I'd also love to be a fluent reader of Latin and biblical Greek and Hebrew.

4. What is your favorite / funniest SojournKids memory? One time one of the kids was wearing overalls and walking around, saying "I'm Jamie Barnes! I'm Jamie Barnes!" (Jamie's one of our elders and main worship leaders. He never wears overalls). Later in the day one of the boy's overall straps slipped off. He started saying "I'm Jamie Barnes!" again, and another child said "No, you don't look like him anymore." I have no idea what made them both think he looked like Jamie in the first place; maybe the overall strap?

5. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? What is your favorite Louisville ice cream shop? Hands down! Birthday Cake ice cream from Homemade Ice Cream & Pie Kitchen!


Father Abraham Liturgy


Sojourn Kid’s Worship: 

Please do not simply read this script to the children. Teach the kids by engaging them and talking with them. Pause for answers and questions. Accept truthful answers; gently correct false answers.  Have them stand up for the singing. Don’t be afraid to engage the teachers in the room to worship and help keep the kids attentive.

Leader 1: "Hi, I'm Mr./Ms. (First name)"

Leader 2: "Hi, I'm Mr./Ms. (First name)"

Leader 1: Today we’re going to talk about a man named Abraham. Now Abraham lived a long time ago. How old are you? (Three! Five! Four! Twenty-Five!) Abraham lived about four thousand years ago! God chose Abraham for something very special. God promised that Abraham’s family would be huge. In fact, his family would be so big that he would start a whole nation! Let’s sing about God’s promise to Abraham

1. “Father Abraham” by Pierre Kartner. ©1971.

Leader 2: God also promised that He would bless all nations through Abraham’s family. Abraham had kids, and they had kids, and they had kids, until one day Abraham’s great-great-great-great-great grandson, Jesus, was born. Because of Jesus, people can be friends with God and have their sins forgiven. Jesus is good news to all nations, to everyone who believes in Him.

In the last song we sang about becoming a part of Abraham’s family. We can be in Abraham’s family, and God’s family, if we trust Jesus, the Mighty Mighty Savior, to forgive our sins and make us right with God. Let’s sing “Mighty Mighty Savior.”

2. "Mighty Mighty Savior," words and music by Mark Altrogge. © Sovereign Grace Praise (BMI). Sovereign Grace Music, a division of Sovereign Grace Ministries. From Awesome God.

Leader 1: God promised that He would be with Abraham and His family forever. His promise is for everyone who joins Abraham’s family by faith in Jesus. God is with people who are forgiven of their sins. He promises to always be with those who believe in Jesus. Let’s sing the next song about God’s promise.

3. "You Are Always With Me," words and music by Mark Altrogge, ©2004 Sovereign Grace Praise (BMI). Sovereign Grace Music, a division of Sovereign Grace Ministries. From Awesome God. 

Leader 2: We’re going to pray now, so everybody fold your hands and close your eyes and be still and pay attention to God; we’re going to talk to Him now.

“God, thank You for keeping Your promises. Thank You for blessing all nations through Abraham’s family in Jesus. You are so loving and merciful. Please help us to believe Your promises. Amen ”

God loved Abraham, and His loving promises are for everyone who believes in Jesus and trusts Him for forgiveness. He is so loving. Let’s sing one more song about God’s love.

4. “Your Love, ” words and music by Bob Kauflin, © 2004 Sovereign Grace Praise (BMI). Sovereign Grace Music, a division of Sovereign Grace Ministries. From Awesome God.

Leader 1: Okay everybody, sit down. It’s time for your lesson from the Bible.