One year ago the piece now known as Messenger had not yet been written. In December 2015 I was only beginning to consider the possibility of creating music based on the book of Malachi for an art night at my church. Fast forward to today, and my then vague idea has been completed, as well as clarified by world-class musicians and made available for $1.99 on iTunes. I still can hardly believe it. What a wonderful gift I have been given this year!
Not only has Messenger been recorded, but more doors are opening for possible second and third installments to be produced in the same way, these two called Messiah and Majesty; the three together portraying Christ as Prophet, Priest, and King. This past fall I completed writing Messiah, and plan to present it at my church (Grace Community Church in Hudsonville) this coming Sunday evening, December 11 at our 6pm service.* For those of you in town, I would love to have you in attendance! Messiah will be presented in the same way Messenger was the first time, with three soloists and myself at the piano. For those of you at Grace, you will be interested to know that my sister, Shannon Connelly, along with Brian Felten and Chris Rookus, will perform as the soloists. I am excited about this stellar cast!
The writing process for Messiah seemed much different than Messenger, as I sought to craft a work that would be cohesive with a first and third. I carefully considered what Scripture passage to focus on, and decided to tell the story of Christ’s transfiguration as recorded in all three of the Synoptic Gospels (Matthew 16:13-17:13, Mark 8:27-9:13, Luke 8:18-36). This passage is pivotal in revealing Jesus to be the Messiah, and my hope is that those who see and hear Messiah will be encouraged to confess in faith along with Peter that Jesus truly is the Messiah, the Son of God, the Christ. I encourage all of you to go back to these passages and marvel at how God sent His own glorious flesh to die for us, that we might be saved.
I look forward to presenting this music for the first time on Sunday, and hope to see many of you there! Even though the transfiguration is not a passage associated with Christmas, I hope it reminds us all of the richness and wonder of the season.
*Since the December date was snowed out, Messiah will now be performed on Sunday evening, January 22 during Grace Community Church’s 6pm service.