Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | April 16, 2013

The Song of the Redeemed

From Cairo, Egypt and Amman, Jordan

One of the things I am most thankful for is the opportunity to worship with Christ-followers all over the world. Over the years, I have been privileged to worship in a variety of contexts among the nations — from the steppes of Mongolia to the savannas of Africa. And while I am not always able to understand the words that I hear, I nevertheless know when I am listening to the song of the redeemed.

Yesterday evening, I had the privilege of speaking at the Monday night prayer meeting at Kasr El Dobara — the largest evangelical church in the Middle East. What I found so inspiring was the almost two-thousand people, including hundreds of students, in attendance at a prayer meeting on a Monday night. And, this prayer meeting is televised throughout the Arab-speaking world. The worship was amazing and the prayer was intense. The people of Kasr El Dobara are making a difference because they are advancing on their knees.

As I stood and listened to the praise and worship, I thought about the lyrics to the song “He Reigns” by the Newsboys. Once again, I found myself in the middle of those lyrics. The first stanza of the song says:

It’s the song of the redeemed
Rising from the African plain
It’s the song of the forgiven
Drowning out the Amazon rain
The song of Asian believers
Filled with God’s holy fire
It’s every tribe, every tongue, every nation
A love song born of a grateful choir

I appreciate my new friend Fayez who served as my translator. He is a gracious gentleman whose position at the church is akin to my own at Kingsland. He was a fantastic translator. I felt as though we were speaking as one. Later in the service, Pastor Sameh Maurice, the senior pastor, offered his flock words of encouragement. These are difficult days in Cairo and it was wonderful to see a pastor shepherd his people the way in which Pastor Sameh did.

Tonight, I had the privilege of speaking for the second time at the Iraqi Church in Amman, Jordan. I first spoke to these Christ-followers a couple of months ago. It was so good to see them and my friend Pastor Hannah again and to offer them words of encouragement. Once again, although I did not understand the words of the songs they sang, I was refreshed by the way in which they sang the song of the redeemed. As I stood in worship I just closed my eyes, smiled, and reflected on a line from Twila Paris’ song entitled “How Beautiful.” Twila’s words summed up what I felt in my heart: “How beautiful, how beautiful, how beautiful is the body of Christ.”


  1. The first time I heard the song, He Reigns, it brought tears to my eyes. It is a powerful song with words that reflect the diversity of the Body of Christ. I know the joy and contentment of worshiping with fellow Christians in foreign lands and count it a privilege to stand in unity with them. There is something very special about experiencing worship in another language and culture. It is marvelous that even though we cannot join in the singing, the Holy Spirit makes His presence known and draws us together, proving that we are all in the family of God.

    • Amen, Mary. Good word. Thanks for sharing.

  2. ‘He Reigns’ was played on the radio yesterday as I sat in carpool at 3pm, the same time you posted your post! How funny!

    • Wow. That’s what I call perfect timing! 🙂

  3. Kingsland? Texas? Is that where you go out from? Absolutely amazing stories you share!

    • Hi Beth. Actually, I am the missions pastor at Kingsland Baptist Church located on Kingsland Blvd in Katy, Texas. You can learn more about us at Thanks for following my journey.

  4. […] The Song of the Redeemed ( […]

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