Next to the final chapel before Christmas break, the last chapel before Thanksgiving break is the most restless chapel of the year. But it is a BJU tradition to hold a praise service that allows students to take time out of their busy schedules to thank God for all that He has done.
Mrs. Laura Brundage, a member of the music faculty and the coordinator for this year’s praise service, chose the theme “Bless the Lord” back in June. “I start [planning] in the summer because I have time, but the program does get revised three or four times,” she said.
One of her favorite parts of the program will be the opening song “Bless the Lord,” which will be new to many in the student body. “It really introduces the theme well, and I think it will be easy to learn,” Mrs. Brundage said.
The theme will be presented in three different sections: the love of Christ, life through the death of Christ and power through the work of Christ. “My inspiration for this service was the song ‘In Christ Alone,’” Mrs. Brundage said. “The end of each stanza talks about standing in the love of Christ, living in the death of Christ and standing in the power of Christ. For our Christian life, everything we need—whatever we need—is found in Christ alone.”
The format of this year’s program will be slightly different than previous praise services. “I wanted as much congregational and corporate worship as possible,” Mrs. Brundage said. Hence, there is not a single song in which the congregation is not involved.
The University Chorale, under the direction of Dr. Warren Cook, may introduce the song or sing several parts of it, but the congregation will participate in much of the singing.
“I want the service to be an oasis for the student body,” Mrs. Brundage said. “I want it to be a time of rest before we finish and head home.” Even though most students are looking forward to going home and taking a week off classes, the praise service is still important.
“It’s good to spend time as a corporate body reflecting on what God has done for us this semester,” Mrs. Brundage said. “Hopefully, the service will be refreshing and [students] will come away blessing the Lord for all He has done.”