New IPod Favorite

It’s been a while since I’ve added a new song to my playlist and I’m not for sure why.  I don’t think I’ve been struck by a song lately.  Until today….

It’s a song I heard a while back but I heard it again a few weeks ago and it’s stuck with me and I finally had time to download it tonight.

Forgiven by Sanctus Real is about how we all make mistakes in this life but ultimately we are forgiven by God no matter what we do.

My favorite lines are:

“And I relive my days in the middle of the night

And I struggle with my pain

And wrestle with my pride…

And when I don’t fit in

And I don’t feel like I belong anywhere

When I don’t measure up to much in this life

I’m forgiven”

The message is timeless and one I need to hear repeatedly.  Awesome.

The Voice

I’m not one to watch TV (as some of you may know, we don’t get TV) but my sister who has TiVo invited me to watch NBC’s new show called “The Voice.”  It’s similar to American Idol but singers are grouped into teams and are coached by professional singers. It’s surprisingly good.

Well, one song chosen to be sung was Unwritten by Natasha Bedingfield.  I liked this song when it first came out but now it is very apropos to where I’m at now in my writing career.  My favorite lyrics:

“Reaching for something in the distance,

So close you can almost taste it,

Drench yourself is words unspoken

Today is where your book begins,

The rest is still unwritten.”

Now, this song is probably meant to be figurative but I take it literally since I write.  I love how this song speaks to how nothing is set in stone, you can always change and set your path because every day is new and a chance to start over and do your calling.

Naturally, I downloaded it to my IPod so I can be inspired to keep chugging away, especially now when I’m still questioning what I’m supposed to do with writing.  I know I’m supposed to write. But what?  For whom? In what medium?  How?

A New Song!

Lately, I had been getting bored with my IPod selection.  None of my songs were speaking to me and I remember thinking, I need something.  So, I turned on K-Love and there it was!

“You are more than the choices that you’ve made

You are more than the sum of your past mistakes

You are more than the problems you create

You’ve been remade”

You are More by Tenth Avenue North.  When I heard it again on K-Love the next day, I had to know the meaning behind the song.

So here’s the story :

http://tenthavenuenorth.com/journal/entry/you-are-more

It’s fascinating to me because it’s something I would ponder or wonder about.  But it never occurred to me. The argument has very strong points.  It’s amazing how subtle messages sneak into our psyche subconsciously that is not the truth but affects our attitude and beliefs–and can ultimately affect our walk with God.

I struggle with such negative thoughts and I need to be told over and over again:  You are more–even when you fail over and over again.

It’s so easy to get caught up in the humdrum of life and lose your purpose.  I need reminding constantly that God has more for me if I reach out and grab it.  He has more no matter my past or how much I screw up the present.

When I was a little girl, one of my dreams was to be a singer. Well, I can’t sing.  I also greatly desired to play an instrument and never had the opportunity as a child.  I’ve always been fascinated by music and love to listen to music that speaks to me in some way.  I’m drawn to it.  I guess in some way I wish I could write music but I’m lucky to know the difference between a quarter note and a half note.  In another life I’d like to write music.

God didn’t gift me in that way.  But I greatly admire those who are.

If you read this story, you’ll be as awestruck as I am.  How do these guys know so much at such a young age?  Again, I keep thinking of all I’ve missed out on.  But I’m doing my best to catch up!

In BSF today, our leader spoke of the importance of music that celebrates Him and who He is.  I couldn’t agree more.  Music can drag me out of the worst of moods.  Music can say things to me that no matter how many times I’ve read it or heard it spoken or told myself I don’t get it.  Because for whatever reason music is in my soul.  God is everywhere and He speaks through people, through His word, in Nature, in music, work, etc.  He uses whatever medium He has to to get our attention.  And for me it’s music.

God uses music to celebrate Him and who He is.  He can revel himself through music.  When God speaks through such music, it’s a powerful message and one I tend to listen to whole-heartedly.

I played this song over and over again as I drove around today.  “I’ve been remade.”  I keep thinking of me as the clay and God as the potter and when I fall apart, He remakes me.  I keep telling this to myself over and over again.  When I falter, God will remake me.  When I give in to the side of me I don’t like, God will remake me.  There is hope–because of Jesus and what God did for us.  Not from anything we can do.

There is hope.  And for me I find hope in many places (God, Bible, my work, my husband, my kids, people, etc). And today it’s this song.

End Note:  My IPod has been a gift from God.  It was given to me by my husband (another gift from God). It was invented/created by a human whose mind was a gift from God.  It serves His purposes.  Fascinating how everything ties together and all leads back to Him, isn’t it?

Another IPod Winner!

I was actually on ITunes to download “How He Loves” by David Crowder (I love his voice) when I discovered a different song.

After you download a song, recommendations come up and one was “Strong Tower” by Kutless.  I knew it and when I saw it was on sale for only .69 I thought, “Sure, why not?”

Well, now it’s become my new favorite and I think because it fits in with my melancholy mood as of late and my family problems. The words speak straight to my heart:

When I’m wander through the desert

And I’m longing for my home

All my dreams have gone astray

I go running to your mountain

Where your mercy sets me free

Great stuff!  Perfect for me at this moment in my life for whatever reason.

Music of My Heart

To recap for those new to my website, I recently embarked on the world of the IPod-ers.  My husband bought me one for our anniversary and I have been addicted ever since.  The fact you can buy individual songs and listen to them whenever you want is amazing to me.

I drive my kids to school and all over as the designated chauffer in the family and car time is worship time for me.  I’m horrible at worship during church (something I’m working on).  I find it hard to concentrate and get into the songs if I don’t like them.  So, I use car time as a substitute.

The latest edition to the IPod that has been playing over and over again and has been put on my heart is “Our God” by Chris Tomlin.

My favorite lines:

“Our God is greater,

Our God is stronger,

God, you are higher than any other

Our God is healer

Awesome in power,

Our God, Our God”

“And if our God is for us, then who could ever stop us

And if our God is with us, then what could stand against”

This is something I need to hear continually.  I need to be told God is with me and nothing can stop me.  I need to be told my dreams (really His dreams) will one day be realized.  I need to be reminded how Great God is.

It’s so easy to lose track of God in the daily actions of kids and life so listening to songs in the car helps me to stay grounded in Him.  It reminds me of his importance and primacy in the world and all my troubles seem to vanish in that moment I’m singing along.

I suddenly realized I have three songs on my IPod by Chris Tomlin (I only have 22 on my IPod so this was significant).  I guess that makes me a fan of his work.  I googled him to learn more about him and apparently he has a new album coming out this month with “Our God” on it.  I’ll have to listen to the song on ITunes when the album comes out and I may buy it again.

Significance of MY God

I’m been listening to a new song repeatedly on my IPod entitled, “My Savior My God” by Aaron Shust.  Some of the lyrics are:

My Savior loves, My Savior lives

My Savior’s always there for me

My God: He was

My God: He is

My God is always gonna be

I love this because believers do tend to have a picture of God, sitting on his throne, distant from man.  But when you think of him as your God as My God, He becomes closer, more like us, and more intimate.  You can expand your relationship with Him.

Another helpful song is Matt Redman’s “You Never Let Go,” says:

For I won’t fear no evil

For My God is with me

And if My God is with me

Whom then shall I fear?

Same thing.  If your God is with you, you shouldn’t fear anything in this life.  But it’s the use of “my” wherein lies the power.

Enjoy the Journey

I was listening to K-Love the other day (my IPod had died) and heard a conversation from the hosts about enjoying the journey.

I’m trying to keep this in the forefront of my mind, especially when the kids are screaming and pouring orange juice all over my floor.  My kids are growing–fast–and as my 2 year old rapidly approaches 3, I soon won’t have a baby any more–or ever again.

It’s about enjoying every moment of every day (as much as possible and yes, I’m trying, Eckhart) before those moments vanish and become only memories.

Beginning BSF and getting back to reading the Bible daily and grounding myself has helped.  I’m calmer and less stressed.  The house has helped as well.  Now, I’m trying to live in the moment as much as possible and begin living and enjoying again.

Closest to God When I Write

I feel really close to God when I am writing.  I feel Him working through me and allowing me to write something meaningful that will one day impact others.

I was listening to my IPod while driving yesterday and Matt Redman’s “You Never Let Go” came up.  The lines are “And I will fear no evil, for MY God is with me, and if MY God is with me, whom then shall I fear?”

I really focused on the MY God and thought about it that way I think for the first time even though I’ve heard this song dozens of times.

The whole idea of “My God”.  He is your God.  He is mine like my dogs are mine, my kids are mine, my husband is mine.  He is mine like everything else I hold dear to my heart.  It just snapped something inside of me and brought Him a bit closer and more intimate to me, realizing that He is mine.

A lot of people like to hold on to their possessions: house, car, boat, toys, etc.  It’s human nature.  I think we need to hold on to God just as fervently since He is ours as well.  Most people freak out about losing their most precious possession: their home.  As one who has lost their physical abode, it’s not fun.  But I let it go.  If we hold on to God at least as much as we do our home and preferably more so, we’d all move closer to God, to the relationship He wants with each one of us, to what He desires most from us.

I felt elated and still am a bit dizzy by it.  It’s a great concept to embrace and realize He can be tangible if you so desire.  Wonderful.

Return to My IPod

Lately, I had fallen out of use of my IPod.  I think I had grown tired of my whopping 10 songs on there played over and over again.  Well, yesterday, I was really stressed from the kids and I think it’s because I had stopped listening to my IPod.  I use it as a tool.  Most of my music is Christian and speaks to my heart in some way.  It’s as if God speaks to me through these songs (like the Bible) at times and I had lost that aspect of my life.

So, in the midst of my kids losing control around 6pm (tired and cranky as usual), I hopped on ITunes and more than doubled my collection.  I listened to them this morning as I was doing the all important task of cleaning my house and I feel much more relaxed and ready to face the day head on.

Music is so calming, don’t you think?

Music and Writing

When I first read Twilight and Ms. Meyer gave credit to a band that she listened to when she wrote the story, I just didn’t get it.  I like to write in silence so I was confused at first.  Yet, lately, I’ve gotten it.

Ever since my husband got me my IPod, I’ve been listening to the same 10 songs over and over.  These are the songs that most speak to my heart about my life right now and where I want it to head.

Needless to say, they do inspire my writing.  I listen to them before I sit down to write and all throughout the day as I ponder what I will write.  They take me back to the time and place I need to be…the time my story takes place.  They re-new the feelings I had, the ones I’m trying to re-create, and they center me as I type.

Some songs encourage me…telling me I can do this if I only keep trying.  Some songs remind me of who I used to be.  Others tell me what’s important in this life as I try to convey these messages to others.

What about you?  Do you listen to music as you write or are you inspired by music?  I’d love to hear your stories.