April 23, 2017 - #4571 Music and the Spoken Word

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Conductors: Mack Wilberg and Ryan Murphy
Organist: Richard Elliott
Announcer: Lloyd Newell

“How Firm a Foundation”1
Music: J. Ellis
Lyrics: Robert Keen
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

“He Shall Feed His Flock”2
Music: John Ness Beck
Lyrics: Scripture

“How Excellent Thy Name” from Saul
Music: George Frideric Handel

“The King of Love My Shepherd Is” (Organ solo)
Irish melody
Arrangement: Robert Cundick

“Bound for the Promised Land”3
American folk hymn
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

“Over the Rainbow”4 from The Wizard of Oz
Music: Harold Arlen
Lyrics: E.Y. Harburg
Arrangement: Arthur Harris

“Praise, My Soul, the King of Heaven”
Music: Ryan Murphy
Lyrics: Henry F. Lyte

1. On the CDs Then Sings My Soul and Called to Serve and in the CD set The Missionary Collection.
2. On the CD Consider the Lilies and in the CD set Encore Collection
3. On the CDs Come, Thou Fount of Every BlessingSpirit of Americaand America's Choir and in the CD set Bravo: The #1 Albums.
4. On the CD Showtime! and in the CD sets 100 Years: Celebrating a Century of Recording Excellence and Encore Collection.

The Spoken Word

Have You Read Any Good Books Lately?

If you want to strike up a conversation with someone, there are many ways to do it. You could make a comment about the weather, give a friendly compliment, or ask an opinion about a current event. But if you want to make a connection that’s just a little deeper, if you want a conversation that might include some thoughtful introspection, you might consider asking a question like “Have you read any good books lately?”

You can find out a lot about a person if you know what books he or she has read. That’s because books can change us—they mold our view of the world and help us to find answers to life’s questions, big and small. Sometimes reading is seen as an escape from the realities of life, but actually the opposite is true. As one writer put it, “Reading isn’t just . . . how I reset and recharge. It isn’t just how I escape. It’s how I engage.”[1] He went on to observe that good books, like old and trusted friends, can help us through hard times, teach us to look at life from another’s point of view, and remind us of truths we always knew but have somehow forgotten.

While most reading is done alone, reading also has the power to build bridges between people. A father and son chose to read the same series of novels, and this keeps them talking with one another. A young mother has come to learn that gathering children around her and reading a story is one of the best ways to stay connected. This is why some book clubs meet monthly for years on end, bringing people together to talk about what they are reading—and more.

Reading opens new worlds, new experiences, and new perspectives. It’s a way to learn, to be challenged, to be entertained, to be inspired, and to make meaningful connections. Books of fiction can change the way we look at reality. Books about history can help us rethink our present—and our future. And sacred books can elevate our thoughts and bring us closer to the divine.

So maybe every once in a while we should ask ourselves the simple question “Have you read any good books lately?”

[1] Will Schwalbe, “The Need to Read,” Wall Street Journal, Nov. 26–27, 2016, C2.