The Music That Moves You

front-dulcimerAs I listen to certain types of music, artists and songs that move me, I found that there is an almost magical capacity of sound, layered in textures of voices, sounds and rhythms, to lift my soul, and carry it from one place to another. I always say that songs are each a place to which we go – they are more than waves course through the air.

I was in my office this past week with a friend who shares some very similar tastes in music, and we were ruminating about how certain music has actually saved us from pitching a whole genre of music – in this case, worship music – overboard. For me, Jon Foreman kept me alive for a season. For him, tunes from Jacob’s Well did the trick.

The lyrics moved us, but in their simplicity and focus, were delivered to us by a fresh sound and approach that connected uniquely with our souls.

We can all name music that has moved us, and over in our Worship Leader’s Network, there is a great discussion going on about the kind of music that “cracks us open.”

To be opened up by recorded music (it was only live a few decades ago) is a great gift. Right now, as I type, our house is filled with music that is appealing and lifting to everyone in the house. An iPod, a Bose dock, and an On-The-Go list carefully selected by me to cater to the tastes of the whole family, fill my home with ideas and themes that are rumbling in all of us through the day.

Fill your home with the music that “cracks you open,” and make sure some of it is packed with themes that not only resonate with things as they are, but also things as they can be.


Sheltering Mercy: Prayers Inspired by the Psalms

Sheltering Mercy, along with its companion volume, Endless Grace, helps us rediscover the rich treasures of the Psalms—through free-verse prayer renderings of their poems and hymns—as a guide to personal devotion and meditation.

The church has always used the Psalms as part of its prayer life, and they have inspired countless other prayers. This book contains 75 prayers drawn from Psalms 1-75, providing lyrical sketches of what authors Ryan Smith and Dan Wilt have seen, heard, and felt while sojourning in the Psalms. Each prayer is a response to the Psalms written in harmony with Scripture. These prayers help us quiet our hearts before God and welcome us into a safe place amid the storms of life.

This artful, poetic, and classic devotional book features compelling custom illustrations and foil-stamped hardcover binding, offering a fresh way to reflect on and pray the Psalms.