Let’s begin with The Word. 2 Samuel 22: 47 “The LORD lives! Praise be to my Rock! Exalted be my God, the Rock, my Savior!”
Wow. What a week it has been… full of learning curves, deadlines and meetings. You may know the feeling.
Tomorrow my first single, Hold On, will be released on iTunes and Soundcloud. The lyrics are the message, the music the vehicle. It will also be my 45th birthday. Yes… I am no spring chicken, brothers and sisters.
Lately, the music questions often asked have been: What is the direction you are taking with it? What is the music’s purpose? Who is your audience?
I have been in diligent prayer about this for over a year, intense prayer for the last several months. God is so faithful and generous with His time. I am grateful… because His direction, not mine, is the key.
To begin with… my audience is anyone willing to listen… and especially the younger generations. It’s for those who want to hear what’s real, not a sales job, or the preaching of condemnation. I enjoy spending time with all peoples. What I am hearing from the younger generations is that they are tired of the hypocrisy they have been raised in… in our churches.
What I gather is they want to hear the truth, even if it’s uncomfortable, or perhaps socially unacceptable. They desire to be on missions of their own … being activists for God. Actually doing Godly work on earth, in their immediate environments, which they see are full of pain and suffering. I can identify with them.
The lyrics/music is the starting point in my Kingdom assignment.
It is about encouragement and hope… that God is still here… very real… very present… and He loves us to no avail. There are no limits to His Love.
The music will point to Him and Hope in Him, no matter where it will be played, through Christian or secular avenues, although its contemporary jazz funk style will most likely not be played in more conservative churches, for it’s upbeat and soulful.
And that’s perfectly ok. It’s meant for outreach and out here… for those not yet in the pews, or the ones who have given up on community life. It’s meant to draw individuals to any church that looks like a cross section of the people in its village, town, or city. All tribes… all peoples… so authentic Godly defined Unity is seen, felt, encouraged, and not what man’s idea/agenda on Unity is.
Thoughts that often preoccupy my mind:
How does God see His community? And what might He think of our current condition?
How does God see you/us?
How did Jesus live out His life, and asks you/us to imitate Him?
How do we authentically live out His Truths?
How does God define humble servant leadership, and how are we living it out?
Indeed, it is not the opinion of man that counts, but God’s. You can stand on that 24/7, no matter what comes your way.
My prayer is that the music is a seed that encourages you/us to see ourselves and others through the eyes of Jesus, and thus move in to living in real freedom. A freedom to be who God designed you to be, and not what this earth keeps trying to sell you, or tell you. Freedom is the opposite of oppression. Freedom is the opposite of condemnation. Freedom is the opposite of personal imprisonments. These things have already been conquered through Jesus… through His unrelenting Grace and Mercy. BOY! Is that a reason to worship Him, or WHAT!?! For me, reminding myself of how God sees me allows me to breathe a sigh of relief in this dark world.
The thing about music is that most everyone is open to it. And we can connect with Him through music, anytime. I believe that God built us for worship of Him, first and foremost. Singing and giving praise are fundamental elements for adoring our God… a pathway to help us connect… in order to open our hearts and minds to receive His freedom gift. Music as a primer…
The beautiful thing is… music is as accessible as popping in earbuds. Perhaps taking encouraging words to the ears might begin watering thoughts… that in community… in essence worshiping and listening to the Word together… is God’s plan for us as His people. Although we may each have individual Kingdom assignments as soldiers for God, we come together to celebrate and encourage one other. Remember, His mission can be tough, and the world doesn’t recognize it as good. And know that the world may be sitting next to you in the pew, at times. Take heart… God is good. Stay focused, no matter what.
Thus, the purpose of the music is to encourage community… pointing them toward the body of Christ… any church community that encourages unity… the kind The Bible talks about… of all peoples… all nations… all tribes.
You may be in a church family that is far from this picture. If you love the body of people, I encourage you to stay and pray. Pray that God’s will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. It may be the very reason why God has you there in the first place. As our Dear Preacherman, Senior Pastor Neil Tomba often says, God’s Truth over our opinion.
If you are ambivalent about your community, I encourage you to visit other churches, and when you find the community God calls you to, get involved. Plant yourself there… and bloom! God is faithful to all that seek Him. Remember this.
May ALL the Glory be to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit!
May you find hope, strength, & peace in The One… The ONLY ONE… who has designed you for His unique Kingdom assignment…. and then have the courage to boldly live it out. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
p.s. I leave you with the words to the new single:
Sing to me let Me be
All that you need to see
Tell Me that you can’t believe
That I am always what you need
Cling to Me there you’ll see
That you are Mine and I’m with thee
I tell you that there’s nothing else
I am The One who has prevailed
Let My Light shine on you
I give My strength to break you
When you feel you can’t go on
Bring to Me those in need
Of perfect love that comes through Me
There’s nothing on this Earth more free
My loving arms are here for thee
Dream of Me speak to Me
Show your heart in its insanity
I will be your sacred place
So we can one day be face-to-face
So shine My Light in your life
Let My love be your guide
With open arms lifted high
Take this cup for you are Mine
I said darling I’m The One
So hold on
lyrics: Maribel Hill