The Story Behind the Annie Moses Band

If you have the time, I think you’ll enjoy watching this mini-documentary which offers an interesting look at an extraordinary family. Bill and Robin Wolaver and their six children travel the country as the Annie Moses Band. The story behind what they do and why they do it is truly fascinating.   

Forgive Me

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins
and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

1 John 1:9

I don’t know how I missed hearing it before, but I love this song by Rebecca St. James and BarlowGirl. Hope you do too.

There is such hope in these lyrics…

Forgive Me

For all the times I’ve failed You, Lord
Forgive me
For all the ways I’ve fallen short
Lord, forgive me now
God, I’m so in need of grace
I fall upon my face
Forgive me

You see the tears fall down my face
Forgive me
Take my fear, Lord, take my shame
Lord, forgive me now
Purify me, make me new
Like only You can do
Forgive me now

Lord, we come to honor You
We are forgiven
We bring our love and thanks to You
We are forgiven now

God we praise You for Your grace
Before You we are raised
Forgiven
God we praise You for Your grace
Before You we are raised
Forgiven
Forgiven

Written by Scott Dyer and Rebecca St. James
Photo: Isaac Joo

Fall Upon Your Knees

I recently began following Kingsway Worship on Twitter and as a result have become acquainted with the worship music of several artists from across the pond like Cathy Burton and Tim Hughes. Now, I can add one singer from Down Under to the list of artists Kingsway has introduced me to–Miriam Webster. After working on several projects with Hillsong Music, Miriam released her first solo album, Made Me Glad, in 2010.

The following song “Fall Upon Your Knees” is featured on that album.

Fall Upon Your Knees

He is able to restore
He is able to heal
He is able to reprove
He is able to forgive

Though your spirit may be wounded
Or your heart be filled with grief
The proud will have no hope
But the humble no defeat

Fall upon your knees
Cry out to your Maker
He will hear you, cause He’s your secret place
Fall upon your knees, bow before your Maker
He will deliver you, cause He’s your secret place

He gives strength to the weary
He gives power to the weak
When you go to Him in secret
And lay surrendered at His feet

Counting on Your Name

Beautiful worship song and video from UK worship leader Tim Hughes

Counting on Your Name

My name is written on Your hands
You’ve called me Your own
You’ve called me Your own
Now I am Yours, no earthly power
Could tear us apart
Tear us apart

I’m counting on Your name
I’m counting on Your name
Counting on Your name to save me

I’m trusting You’re the way
I’m trusting You’re the way
Trusting You’re the way my Saviour

My life is built on nothing less
Than Your faithfulness
Your faithfulness

I’m hoping in You
Hoping in You

I believe
I believe
I believe You are the way

Sick Leave

You may notice that things are a bit quiet here today. Unfortunately, a virus has invaded my body and done a real number on my health. Let’s just say the last 24 hours have not been the best of my life. :( Wowee-kazowee. Anyway, because of my sickness, I’ve been unable to work on my blog as I normally would. I did want to share the following video with you though.

This is “Open Hands” by Matt Papa. My sister and brother-in-law have been big fans of his music for a while now, and they kept telling me how he reminded them of Keith Green. Until I saw this video, I thought they were only referring to his passion and intensity; I didn’t realize that he also had the Keith Green ‘fro and beard thing going on. =)

Lord willing, I’ll be on the mend soon and will be able to get things back to normal here on the blog. God bless!

Lite-Brite Like You’ve Never Seen

Earlier this week, The David Crowder Band released the new video for their latest single “Shine.” When I watched it for the first time, I thought, “Wow, I wonder how in the world they generated those images.” I had no idea how impressive the video actually is. According to CMSpin

The video portraying a love story made completely of LITE-BRITE ® pegs was done solely by hand. Even details such as the piano playing in the background and the monkeys beating a drum in perfect time was done free of digital affects and computer animation. It took 2,150 man hours, 1,200 LITE-BRITE ® images, 83 friends and 148 pizzas to complete the video.

If you’ve wondered what over 700,000 Lite-Brite pegs could look like in action, here’s your answer…

Shine

Send me a sign
A hint, O whisper
Fill me with life
‘Cause I am listening

Come break the quiet
Breathe your awakening
Bring me the light
‘Cause I am fading

Surround me with the rush of angels’ wings

Shine Your light so I can see You
Pull me up, I need to be near You
Hold me, I need to feel loved
Can You overcome this heart that’s overcome?

You sent a sign
The hint, O whisper
Human, divine
Everyone is listening

Death laid low
Quiet in the night is stirring

All around the rush of angels

O the wonder of the greatest love has come

Shine Your light so all can see it
Lifted up, ’cause the whole world needs it
Love has come, what joy to hear it
He has overcome, He has overcome

Illustration: ilker

Celebrating Survivors

“…in all these things we are more than conquerors
through him who loved us.”

Romans 8:37

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month.

While out walking yesterday, I noticed another woman on the track. Dressed in her workout clothes, iPod strapped to her arm, and moving at a good pace, she looked like everyone else at the gym. The bit of bare scalp visible beneath the woman’s ballcap served as the only clue that she was in fact, not like everyone else casually working out that day. She was battling cancer. When Matthew West’s song “Survivors” started playing a moment later, I seriously contemplated handing my iPod over to this brave lady so she could hear it, but I worried I would disturb her. I decided to take a moment to pray for both her physical and spiritual healing instead. Still, I wish I could have shared this song with her.

Here’s the story…

The Story of Your Life is available on iTunes for $9.99.

Survivors

You’ve been dropped like a dream to the floor
You’ve been told not to try anymore
But you’re waking from yesterday’s war
‘Cause you’re a survivor
And your strength has been stolen away
And your faith has been worn to a fray
But you live to live one more day
‘Cause you’re a survivor

Nothing can stop you now
Nothing can back you down
You never give up, never give in
You’re a survivor
Whoa, Whoa, Whoa

For the phone call that tore you apart
For the fear that gripped your heart
For the moment you saw who you are
And what you’re made of
For the cancer that stole all your hair
For the smile like you just don’t care
For your hope in a midnight prayer
You’re a survivor

I’m convinced neither death nor life
Neither demons nor angels of light
Shadows present or future light
Can separate us
From the love that will lead us on
To the hope when all hope is gone
‘Til the day heaven calls us home
We are survivors

Written by Matthew West
Photo: Alice Wycklendt

143 Million Minus One

“…you have been the helper of the fatherless.”

Psalm 10:14

This song makes me want to dance, even though I don’t know how.

Across the world, an estimated 143 million children face each and every day without the love or presence of their mommies or daddies. 143 million orphans–It seems an overwhelming number. As individuals, we stagger at the thought of making a difference in the lives of so many, but as Matthew West so beautifully reminds us in his song, “One Less,” we may not be able to reach every child, but we can reach one.

One day in the future, Lord willing, I’m going to dance to this song with my own little ones brought home from halfway around the world. They won’t care that I can’t dance.  =)

Here’s the story behind the song… 

How do you feel about adoption? Do you have an adoption story to share?

The Story of Your Life is available on iTunes for $9.99.

One Less

There’s a child
Been abandoned out on the street
Now she’s waiting for someone to be her miracle
There’s a wife
Somewhere halfway around the world
Begging God for a little girl she can call her own
Well, worlds collide, and colors fade
And a man and wife brought their little girl home today

And there’s one less
One less
One less broken heart in the world tonight
Yeah, there’s one less
One less
There’s one less broken heart in the world tonight

We are called
To the widows and the orphans
But it’s easy to ignore their silent cries
Oh, but every single time
Somebody reaches into the darkness
Makes a choice to help the helpless
They let mercy save a life

Well the truth is we are all the orphans
But love has left the ninety-nine
Just to find the one
One less night alone
One less child without a home
One less birthday gone forgotten
One more soul rising from the bottom

One less
One less
There’s one less broken heart in the world tonight

Written by Matthew West
Photo: Joseph Hoban

Grafted into a New Family Tree

“…the generation of the upright will be blessed.”

Psalm 112:2

Are you a leaf dangling from a twisted family tree? Who’s not, right? Descending from a tree gnarled in past generations by spousal and child abuse, adultery, divorce, remarriage, estrangement, and more divorce, I can wholeheartedly relate to Matthew West’s beautiful song, “Family Tree.” I’ve been listening to the new album for the past couple of days at the gym, and when “Family Tree” plays, I have to restrain myself from breaking out with a Charismatic, hand-raising kind of response. By God’s grace and for His glory, the past is not my legacy–that’s a truth worth rejoicing about.

Here’s the story behind the song:

The Story of Your Life is available on iTunes for $9.99.

Family Tree

You didn’t ask for this
Nobody ever would
Caught in the middle of this dysfunction
It’s your sad reality
It’s your messed up family tree
Now you’re left with all these questions
Are you gonna be like your father was and his father was?
Do you have to carry what they’ve handed down?

No, this is not your legacy
This is not your destiny
Yesterday does not define you
No, this is not your Legacy
This is not your meant to be
I can break the chains that bind you

I have a dream for you
It’s better than where you’ve been
It’s bigger than your imagination
You’re gonna find real love
And you’re gonna hold your kids
You’ll change the course of generations

‘Cause you’re my child, you’re my chosen
You are loved, you are loved
And I will restore all that was broken
You are loved, you are loved

And just like the seasons change Winter into Spring
You’re bringing new life to your family tree now
Yes you are, you are

 Oh, this will be your legacy
This will be your destiny
Yesterday did not define you
Oh, this will be your legacy
This will be your meant to be
I can break the chains that bind you

 And just like the seasons change Winter into Spring
You’re bringing new life to your family tree now

Related Post: Breaking Out of “My Own Little World” 

Written by Matthew West and Jason Houser

Photo: Chris Hurtado

Breaking out of “My Own Little World”

I told you recently about my excitement over the release of Matthew West’s latest album, The Story of Your Life. Honestly, I can’t remember looking forward to a new project like I did this one; the songs are so powerful. Last week on Twitter (my sister now refers to me as a Twitter nerd), I posted the silly tweet, “5 days til release of new Matthew West album The Story of Your Life. Can’t wait. Sitting on the edge of my seat is getting uncomfortable.” I cracked up when Matthew West replied, “BiblicalBeauty, you should try sitting on the edge of a sofa, or maybe a beanbag chair. =) Maybe we will do a cd promo-buy Story of Your Life, get a seat cushion.”

Thankfully, the sofa, beanbag chair, and seat cushion are no longer necessary. The Story of Your Life was released yesterday and is now enjoying a comfortable spot on my iPod. Over the coming days, I’m going to share some of the stories behind Matthew’s songs with you. I think you’re going to enjoy them.

Here’s the video for “My Own Little World.” 

The Story of Your Life is available on iTunes for $9.99.

My Own Little World

In my own little world it hardly ever rains
I’ve never gone hungry, always felt safe
I got some money in my pocket shoes on my feet
In my own little world
Population: me

I try to stay awake through the Sunday morning church
I throw a twenty in the plate but I never give ’til it hurts
and I turn off the news when I don’t like what I see
it’s easy to do when it’s
Population: me

What if there’s a bigger picture
what if I’m missing out
What if there’s a greater purpose
I could be living right now
outside my own little world

Stopped at the red light, looked out my window
Outside the car, saw a sign, said “Help this homeless widow”
Just above this sign was the face of a human
I thought to myself, “God, what have I been doing?”
So I rolled down my window and I looked her in the eye
Oh how many times have I just passed her by
I gave her some money then I drove on through
in my own little world there’s
Population: two

What if there’s a bigger picture
what if I’m missing out
What if there’s a greater purpose
I could be living right now
outside my own little world

Start breaking my heart for what breaks Yours
give me open hands and open doors
put Your light in my eyes and let me see
that my own little world is not about me

Jesus, Draw Me

 

“Just as we have borne the image of the earthy, we will also bear the image of the heavenly.”

1 Corinthians 15:49 

Another great feature of the 2010 True Woman Conferences is the worship music led by Keith and Kristyn Getty. This past weekend in Indianapolis, they shared their beautiful hymn “Jesus Draw Me Ever Nearer” with the women in attendance. They also shared the news that a baby Getty is on the way!  

Below is a video of the Gettys performing this song and a few more at a past concert event.  

Jesus Draw Me Ever Nearer

Jesus draw me ever nearer
As I labor thro’ the storm
You have called me to this passage
And I’ll follow tho’ I’m worn
 

May this journey bring a blessing
May I rise on wings of faith
And at the end of my heart’s testing
With Your likeness let me wake
 

Jesus guide me thro’ the tempest
Keep my spirit staid and sure
When the midnight meets the morning
Let me love You even more
 

Let the treasures of the trial
Form within me as I go
And at the end of this long passage
Let me leave them at Your throne
 

  

Words by Margaret Becker; Music by Keith Getty 

Photo: Nick Benjaminsz

Wowed by Josh Wilson

Don’t you love a good surprise? Sunday night’s Matthew West concert was full of good surprises for me. Opening the show with his incredible performance, Josh Wilson was one of them. A couple of days ago, I didn’t even know who he was, but now, I’m a big fan. As it turns out, I’d heard a couple of Josh’s songs before, but since I don’t listen to the radio much these days, I never knew the singer behind the songs. You may have heard his popular song “Before the Morning” or this one…

I was thoroughly impressed not only by Josh’s talent as a songwriter, vocalist, and guitarist, but also by his fancy footwork. Expressing my ignorance of anything electronic, I asked him after the concert, “What was that thing on the floor? I’ve never seen anybody do that before!” He said, “It’s a loop box. I record what I’m playing, and then I play it back.”

Josh performed an outstanding arrangement of “Amazing Grace” with the help of his handy-dandy loop box. God has gifted this man with some serious skill.  

You can download Josh Wilson’s latest album on iTunes for $7.99.

And if you can, catch Josh Wilson, Jonny Diaz, and Matthew West during their current concert tour. Check out the schedule HERE.

Photo: JoshWilsonMusic.com

Hear the Story of Your Life!

Matthew West was in town for a free concert last night, and yippee for me, I got to go see it. I’ve been a fan of his music for several years now, but this was the first chance I had to hear him in person, and I must say, his live performance did not disappoint. On October 5th, Matthew will release a new album, The Story of Your Life, which is unlike any of his previous work. Here, he explains the inspiration behind this unique project… 

The new songs are personal and powerful. Matthew sings about several difficult topics including abortion, divorce, dysfunctional families, sexual abuse, and cancer among others. Although his lyrics convey the raw pain of suffering, Matthew also highlights God’s redemptive purposes for the trials that shape our life stories. Through repeated messages of hope, forgiveness, and victory in Christ, Matthew makes it clear that there will be a purpose for every pain. I can’t help but think that this album is going to resonate with many listeners.

My friend, Amy, and I before the concert

Meeting Mr. Matthew West

The Story of Your Life includes a beautiful tribute to adoption entitled “One Less.” I absolutely love this song and the message behind it! Matthew explains the story in the video below (I had to cut the song off due to my little camera’s inability to handle loud noise, but you can hear the entire song in Matthew’s interview on K-LOVE Radio HERE.)

I highly recommend catching Matthew in concert during this incredible tour. Check his tour schedule HERE.