It Is Music to Me – 9 Songs that Are Saving My Faith

I’m writing today for Ed’s synchroblog, “What saved your faith?” for the release of A Christian Survival Guide: A Lifeline to Faith and Growth.

music-notes

Sometimes I need to snap out of it. A bad mood or a negative attitude or a hopeless mindset. Maybe one I’ve had only briefly, or maybe one that’s lingered underneath the surface awhile.

So I love when God springs an alarm clock to wake me up—through music. It’s so often music. A song familiar or new. A lyric that pops into my head or flies out of the radio. A truth embedded in melody and harmony.

FOUR YEARS AGO
My daddy was dying and my mother was losing her memory. God used songs like these to remind me to hang on to hope, that he was still in control, and that he still cared.

“Before the Morning”  [Josh Wilson]

Would you dare, would you dare to believe
That you still have a reason to sing
‘Cause the pain that you’ve been feeling
It can’t compare to the joy that’s coming

“It Is Well”   [Kutless]

When peace like a river attendeth my way
When sorrows like sea billows roll
Whatever my lot thou hast taught me to say
It is well, it is well with my soul

“Always Enough”  [Casting Crowns]

You hold the world within Your hands
And see each tear that falls
Through every fire and every storm
You’re always enough, always enough

TWO YEARS AGO
When we were transitioning between releasing one church and embracing another, God sang grace and protection and courage through these songs, among others.

“Great I AM”  [New Life Worship]

The mountains shake before You
The demons run and flee
At the mention of Your Name
King of Majesty

“Lay It Down”  [Matt Maher]

Oh what a sweet exchange
I die to rise again
Lifted up from the grave into Your hands of grace

“Ready or Not”  [Britt Nicole]

I refuse to keep this buried deep inside of me
This lil’ light of mine it’s time to let it shine a bit
‘Cause there’s no point in hiding it
It’s everything I am, the source of all my hope
And it’s the reason why I stand

NOW
When freedom is as evident as it’s ever been and God’s presence breaks through the thin places again and again, yet I still struggle with occasional (though less frequent, praise God!) worries about my kids or fears about new adventures, God reminds me through songs to keep focusing on him, keep showing up to love, and keeping praising through everything.

“Beautiful Exchange”  [Hillsong Chapel]

Holy are You God
Holy is Your name
With everything I’ve got
My heart will sing how I love You

“With Every Act of Love”  [Jason Gray]

God put a million, million doors in the world
For his love to walk through
One of those doors is you”

 “Open Up the Heavens”  [Meredith Andrews]

You’re the reason we’re here
You’re the reason we’re singing
Open up the heavens we want to see You
Open up the floodgates a mighty river
Flowing from Your heart filling every part of our praise

I listen. I sing. I worship.

It saves my faith. Over and over again, amen. Selah.

* * *

What song means something to you right now? Please share here.

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25 thoughts on “It Is Music to Me – 9 Songs that Are Saving My Faith

  1. Joe Pote

    This past couple of weeks, I frequently find myself singing Isaiah 43:1-3:

    “Fear not, for I have redeemed thee;
    I have called thee by My name; thou art Mine!
    When thou passeth through the waters, I will be with thee;
    When thou passest through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee.
    When thou passest through the fires, thou shall not be burned,
    Neither shall the flame kindle upon thee,
    For I am the Lord thy God!”

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      Ah, Isaiah 43 is one of my favorite passages! Such rich promises in there that I claim as mine. And a special song too that I sing with dear friends. Thanks for reminding me of this one, Joe.

  2. blankfloyd

    Music is so powerful. The one song that pops into my head is the one that reminds me of our Father’s sovereignty; “YOU Are Every Where” by Third Day. Think I’ll run that through the record in my mind… thanks, Lisa.

  3. blankPamela

    I found myself worshiping as I read through the lyrics. One God has brought to my mind lately is Matt Redman’s

    Kneeling on this battle ground
    Seeing just how much You’ve done
    Knowing every victory
    Was Your power in us

    Scars and struggles on the way
    But with joy our hearts can say
    Yes, our hearts can say

    Never once did we ever walk alone
    Never once did You leave us on our own
    You are faithful, God, You are faithful

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I’m singing Matt’s song now as I read your words. 🙂 Music is such a powerful gift and tool from the Father. Thanks for sharing this song, Pamela. It’s one of my favorites too. So many great songs out there! And that we can put in here.

  4. blankEd Cyzewski

    I love how you traced several seasons of your life for this post, showing how different songs took on different meanings. It’s so important to remember that the song of one season sometimes gives way to the song of another season as circumstances and the nature of our faith changes.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      Thanks, Ed. Ironically, just last weekend I went back 30 years to listen to some of my (once) favorite songs from “Purple Rain.” Um, probably not for me anymore. ha.

      Thanks for sharing your book. I know it’ll be awesome, as all of your books have been. I love the way you think and write.

  5. blankMelinda Viergever Inman

    Isn’t amazing how when we’re struggling, we’ll turn on the Christian radio station or catch a song, and it will be exactly what we need at that moment! God does that over and over for me, too, Lisa. One song that has a particularly precious connection for me is “Rock of Ages.” As we drove one of our children to the hospital for a very delicate surgery, I realized I had no faith of my own to let the doctor operate. I had to rely on God for even faith. “Rock of Ages, cleft for me, let me hide myself in thee…” That was in 1998, and the song still brings me to tears and reminds me of God’s faithfulness in horrific trial.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      Oh, that’s beautiful Melinda—relying on God even for faith itself. It too is a gift. Rock of Ages is one of those old hymns that can pop up in my mind out of seemingly nowhere, and still carry fresh meaning. I’m glad it did that for you just when you needed it. God is amazing, yes!

  6. blankSherrey Meyer

    An older song than what you’ve listed here, all of which are wonderful, is the song I carry with me each day:

    Morning has broken, like the first morning
    Blackbird has spoken, like the first bird
    Praise for the singing, praise for the morning
    Praise for the springing fresh from the world

    Sweet the rain’s new fall, sunlit from heaven
    Like the first dewfall, on the first grass
    Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden
    Sprung in completeness where his feet pass

    Mine is the sunlight, mine is the morning
    Born of the one light, eden saw play
    Praise with elation, praise every morning
    God’s recreation of the new day.

    Love the thoughts and images as they flow through this song. Lisa, thanks for always making me stop and consider my salvation!

    Blessings,
    Sherrey

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I remember playing that song on the piano back in the day. 🙂 Makes me happy to see it show up here again today. Thanks, Sherrey. Old songs can still be good songs! “Praise with elation, praise every morning God’s recreation of the new day” – such beautiful lyrics.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      That’s a good question we all can ask ourselves, Natalie. Sometimes that “new song” is something totally brand new; other times it may be an old song that touches us in a new way. Occasionally something as simple as “Jesus Loves Me” can take on a profound new depth for me. 🙂

  7. blankBeth

    Gungor’s Beautiful Things … You make beautiful things. You make beautiful things out of the dust. You make beautiful things. You make beautiful things out of us.

  8. blankJennifer Dougan

    Hi Lisa (and Ed),

    Music is so powerful. Thank you, Lisa, for opening up about hard times here with your dad and mom, and transitions in your churches too. How neat of God to whisper hope and truth through music at just the right time. I can think of times too when he’s done that for me. “His strength is perfect when our strength is gone, he’ll carry us when we can’t carry on…” is one old chorus that held me up in a situation.

    Nice to be here again, 🙂
    Jennifer Dougan
    http://www.jenniferdougan.com

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      Glad you’re back safely from your journeys cross-country. I often have songs associated with trips like that. One of my clear memories from years ago was sitting inside a condo overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and watching/hearing a thunderstorm roll in. God kept prompting words from “How Great Thou Art” from me to sing to him. So grateful for how he moves in us.

  9. blankSharon

    My dad just died in January, and my mother is losing her memory. Your songs have spoken well to my soul today. When peace like a river…

    Yes, Lord, I need Your peaceful river to stem the tide of the floodwaters threatening to overwhelm me. Help me sing a new song.

    GOD BLESS.

  10. blankKelli Woodford

    Lisa, I love this. I love how music can open us in ways other forms of communication cannot. It’s like we are deaf to all but the sweet strings or the trill of the flute or the bang of the drum … and then BAM! just like that it’s Presence — everywhere. Ubiquitous. Thank you for this gentle journey down memory’s lane into the places music has brought healing in her wings. So happy to have you at Unforced Rhythms.

  11. blankJen Ferguson

    What an authentic resources was born from all the trials you talked about in this post. I love MANY of the songs you wrote about here. There is a new rendition of Amazing Grace playing on KLove right now that I love. I am desperate for His grace these days (all days?) and this reminds me I already have it.

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      Yes, desperate ALL days for his grace. Some days I’m just more aware of my desperation than others. 🙂

      We are finally able to get KLove in the car down here. I’m so happy about that. God speaks to me so often when I tune in there. Thanks for stopping in, Jen.

  12. Pingback: What Saved Your Faith? Highlights from the Synchroblog | Ed Cyzewski :: Freelance Writer

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