There's a Trick of the Light I'm Learning to Do

This is a collection of songs I wrote and recorded in January - March, 2020 while on sabbatical from ministry. They each deal with a different aspect or expression of the Gospel. Click on the image above to listen.

Three Hands Clapping

This is my latest recording project (released May 27, 2019). It is a double album of 22 songs, which very roughly track the story of my life... a sort of musical autobiography, so to speak. Click the album image to listen.

Ghost Notes

Ghost Notes
A collections of original songs I wrote in 2015, and recorded with the FreeWay Musical Collective. Click the album image to listen.


Recorded in 2014, these songs are sort of a chronicle of my journey through a pastoral burn-out last winter. They deal with themes of mental-health, spiritual burn-out and depression, but also with the inexorable presence of God in the midst of darkness. Click the album art to download.


click image to download
"soundings" is a collection of songs I recorded in September/October of 2013. Dealing with themes of hope, ache, trust and spiritual loss, the songs on this album express various facets of my journey with God.


Click to download.
"Bridges" is a collection of original songs I wrote in the summer of 2011, during a soul-searching trip I took out to Alberta; a sort of long twilight in the dark night of the soul. I share it here in hopes these musical reflections on my own spiritual journey might be an encouragement to others: the sun does rise, blood-red but beautiful.


Prayers, poems and songs (2005-2009). Click to download
"echoes" is a collection of songs I wrote during my time studying at Briercrest Seminary (2004-2009). It's called "echoes" partly because these songs are "echoes" of times spent with God from my songwriting past, but also because there are musical "echoes" of hymns, songs or poems sprinkled throughout the album. Listen closely and you'll hear them.


This collection of mostly blues/rock/folk inspired songs was recorded in the spring and summer of 2015. I call it "accidentals" because all of the songs on this project were tunes I have had kicking around in my notebooks for many years but had never found a "home" for on previous albums. You can click the image to download the whole album.

blogs I follow

Readings, 2020

Readings, 2020
Paradise Lost, John Milton

Adorning the Dark, Andrew Peterson

The Soul of Shame, Curt Thompson

Cure for the Common Life, Max Lucado

Halos and Avatars, Craig Detweiller, ed.

Fool's Talk, Os Guinness

Brendan, Frederick Buechner

The Screwtape Letters

Surprised by Joy, C. S. Lewis

The Pilgrim's Regress, C. S. Lewis

Becoming Whole, Brian Finkert and Kelly Kapic

Real Sex, Lauren Winner

Out of the Silent Planet, C. S. Lewis

Voyage to Venus, C. S. Lewis

That Hideous Strength, C. S. Lewis

random reads

Preparing the Way for the Lord

This Sunday was the second week of Advent; an exciting Sunday in our church, because we had a baptism service to go with it. Especially exciting for me, inasmuch as it was my first baptism service. I've led my share of worship jingles over the years, but I've never felt so like a worship leader as I did Sunday, when I stood in the water with Christ-followers as they received the sign of God's grace and salvation that is water baptism.

Because it was the Second week of Advent, I preached Luke 1:67-81: Zechariah's song at the birth of John. John the Baptist doesn't get a lot of air time in church; I'm not sure why, but the negligence is maybe a shame. By his own admission, John the Baptist's entire reason for being was to point the world inexorably to the Coming Christ. Everything about him was a one-way arrow directing us down the made-straight path to Jesus. (In the best illustrations of John, what stands out most is his long, extended finger pointing the World adamantly to the Lamb of God who takes away Its sin.)

But as I prepared the material for Sunday, at one point it hit me: as with John the Baptist, so too with the sign of Christian Baptism. It should point us inexorably to Jesus. Sometimes I wonder if the language we normally use to describe baptism-- personal testimony, step of obedience, personal declaration of personal faith-- doesn't point us more to the candidate than to the Christ they are declaring. I get the words we use, and believe there really is something beautifully personal about being baptized that should be celebrated; but I also believe that baptism itself should always serve as a long, extended finger pointing the World adamantly to its Savior.

The sermon recording was more than a bit fuzzy this Sunday (technical difficulties), but I thought I'd post it here for anyone interested.

Luke 1:67-81 "The Right Song for the Wrong Baby"


Anonymous said...

Great reminders about baptism's function, Dale.
I assume you are thinking of Grunewald's Isenheim Altarpiece. You can see it here:

Barth had a copy of this painting over his desk as he worked.

Jon Coutts said...

An honour to baptize, no doubt.