Tag Archive | music

Blessings in Disguise

Perhaps longer than some songs at five minutes this particular gem has been soothing my heart during repeated plays lately. There is nothing quite like beautiful music and a melodious voice talent combined with poetic wisdom to penetrate through the mire and pierce our heart with much-needed light. May this song bring light to your heart as it does for me.

“Blessings” by Laura Story

We pray for blessings, we pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
prayer mattersWe pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
And all the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

‘Cause what if Your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes
To know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom, Your voice to hear
We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt Your goodness, we doubt Your love
As if every promise from Your word is not enough
And all the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we’d have faith to believe

‘Cause what if Your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

refreshing rainWhen friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not,
This is not our home
It’s not our home

‘Cause what if Your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
And what if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes
to know You’re near

What if my greatest disappointments or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise

Laura Mixon Story Elvington (born c. September 5, 1978) is an American contemporary Christian music singer-songwriter from Spartanburg, South Carolina. In June 2011, this first single off the album, also titled “Blessings”, reached No. 1 on the Billboard Christian Songs chart, giving Laura Story her first number one hit and making her one of the few female Christian artists to ever reach the top of the singles chart. In an interview, she explains “Blessings is just a bunch of songs about worshipping when life is hard”. Her husband was diagnosed with a brain tumor, and she wondered “Why didn’t you just fix it, God? You’re all powerful and all loving… just fix it.” After mentioning her desire to return to normal, her sister said “You know, I think the detour is actually the road.” She realized that “Spending time with [her husband] Martin obviously makes me happy, but it makes me a better person. That’s the blessing of it.” [source]

An Amazing Lesson within a Song

This song is very meaningful to me, as a reminder that we do not need to be perfect to be loved. We are beautiful just the way we are. Amy Grant’s song reminds us that our cries of loneliness and pain are as meaningful and beautiful to God as a ‘hallelujah’. This is an important lesson I am learning and integrating…. that I do not have to always be in my ‘joyful’ place, shining and bright and overflowing with love. Sometimes I’m sad, and low energy, and feel like I have nothing more to offer anyone. This song reminds me that in those moments of sadness, we are as loved as ever.

I do not need to always be happy and shining to have something to offer the world. I may not feel up to complimenting the store clerk, to help brighten her day, but I do seem to always have the ability to offer a smile… if nothing else. And a smile is a beautifully healing thing. More powerful than we know. So here’s a song on a topic that means a lot to me. I hope you enjoy. May we all remember we are good enough, just the way we are, no matter what. Blessings, Gina

Put A Little Love In Your Heart

From the SCROOGED Movie Soundtrack, here is an excellent cover of Jackie DeShannon’s 1969 song, beautifully performed by Al Green and Annie Lennox.

 

Think of your fellow man
Lend him a helping hand
Put a little love in your heart
You see it’s getting late
Oh, please don’t hesitate
Put a little love in your heart

And the world will be a better place
And the world will be a better place
For you and me
You just wait and see

Another day goes by
And still the children cry
Put a little love in your heart
If you want the world to know
We won’t let hatred grow
Put a little love in your heart

And the world will be a better place
And the world will be a better place
For you and me
You just wait and see, wait and see

Take a good look around
And if you’re lookin’ down
Put a little love in your heart
And I hope when you decide
Kindness will be your guide
Put a little love in your heart

And the world will be a better place
And the world will be a better place
For you and me
You just wait and see
Put a little love in your heart
Each and every day
Put a little love in your heart
There’s got to be a better way
Put a little love in your heart
Don’t you think it’s time we start
Put a little love in your heart

Whom Shall I Fear?

playing guitarLearning to play guitar, like gardening, is a lifelong process. I wear my left-hand fingertip calluses proudly. One of the best things about playing guitar is enjoying it with my husband. It has become quite a bonding experience for us. I’m so grateful for his humility and patience as I began playing years after he did.

Music touches the soul and plucks inner chords we didn’t even know were there.

guitar pick Music speaksChristian rock is a style of music that often has me singing as tears wet my face. I am proud to worship even if I’m perhaps more all-encompassing and non-denominational that most contemporary Christian music concert-goers. But the same way that the Bible is an incredibly wise book available to all to read and learn from no matter their faith, so too is the music of this genre an enlivening style that brightens the hearts of so many listeners.

While I frequently listen to instrumental music when driving, if traffic is not too congested I’ll turn on the radio and enjoy my local Christian music station. This song came on and although I’d never heard it before I began singing along. There are times when it feels like my chest is peeling open because I’m filled with so much love and gratitude. This song continues to elicit this response.

Anyone who has the the desire and determination can learn how to play this song because the chords are included with this video. Learning to play any song requires repetition, and that helps the wisdom seep in. I highly recommend it! 

May this timeless truth expressed with musical passion brighten your heart and your day.

Chris Tomlin
Christopher Dwayne “Chris” Tomlin is an American contemporary Christian music (CCM) artist, worship leader, and songwriter who has sold nearly 30 million records.
He is a husband and father who was born on May 4, 1972 in Grand Saline, Texas, United States.

Sing On

joyful Maya AngelouI first heard this song from 1994 around that time on a Public Broadcasting Station (commercial-free radio!), allowing for this long song. Eight enjoyable minutes of movement-motivating music! This fantastic compilation by the talented Branford Marsalis and friends, which includes Maya Angelou reading some of her incredible poem, is delightful and makes me dance (even if just in my chair!).

I hope this song brightens your heart and your day as it always does for me. May we remember our love for Maya with gratitude for her magnificent example, and how she blessed us with her years here. She will live on, forever in our hearts, and we are so thankful for all she shared. Namaste. Gina

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou

(This is her complete poem; certain excerpts are in the song)

The free bird leaps
on the back of the wind
and floats downstream
till the current ends
and dips his wings
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his wings are clipped
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with fearful trill
of the things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom

The free bird thinks of another breeze
and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright lawn
and he names the sky his own.

But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.

For more of her exceptional poetry, here’s a post for Maya Angelou on my other blog:
http://peopleexcitedaboutcoexistence.com/2014/05/28/lift-up-your-hearts/

The Great Peace March

source Facebook/PeaceFlash

source Facebook/PeaceFlash

Having been inspired by this song since the early nineties, I wanted to share it. However, after not being able to find it anywhere on YouTube, I decided to join, create my channel, and learn how to make a lyrics video.

While I am indeed a YouTube neophyte, I’m pleased with the result of this, my very first lyrics video! Of course if an Ad pops up you’ll need to click the ‘x’ to close it so you can read the lyrics.

It is my sincere wish that you will enjoy this inspiring song for world peace, written and performed by singer, songwriter, and activist Holly Near.
We will have peace!

You may also enjoy my post from last year with another incredible song for world peace. I discovered Ella’s Song through Holly Near’s cover of it on her 1990 album Singer In The Storm. In this post you can enjoy a YouTube recording being performed by the exceptionally talented group, Sweet Honey In The Rock:
http://professionsforpeace.com/2013/02/09/we-who-believe-in-freedom/

You Are Wanted

A few days ago I was at last in a cleaning spurt. That’s always a good sign that I’m feeling better. On a whim I decided to turn to the Spirit Channel with uplifting Christian rock as my choice of ‘background noise’ while I scrubbed my kitchen, instead of a nature documentary or cooking show.

It wasn’t long before I heard this song (shared below thanks to YouTube) and found myself singing along… and then going to YouTube to hear it again… and again.

As I was singing along I thought of my son’s friend, a lovely young man who left too soon. I thought about my darling and still-young dog who has lost her sight. And I thought of myself. Deserving of love exactly where I am right now, in this moment. “You are wanted!” I sang along.

The lovely songstress Dana Maclean co-wrote and sings these incredible lyrics, helping remind us of how important each and every one of us is. I encourage you to listen. I hope you enjoy. Namaste. Gina

WANTED

Written by JUSTIN EBACH, PAUL MABURY, and DARA MACLEAN

From the day you were born

And took your first breath

You opened your eyes and in came the light

He was watching you

But all of your life you couldn’t shake the lies in your head

Saying you’re a mistake

Oh but you were made

By a God who knows your name

He doesn’t make mistakes

 

You are wanted

To every broken heart, He stands with open arms

You are wanted

To every searching soul, look to the rising sun

If you’re lonely, hurting, gone too far

To the outcast you come as you are

For you, you are wanted, you, you are wanted

You, you are wanted, you, you are wanted

 

Let this be the day that joy takes the place

Of all of the years that shame tried to steal away

He is calling you

Lift your eyes to see His face

Come run into the arms of grace

 

You are wanted

To every broken heart, He stands with open arms

You are wanted

To every searching soul, look to the rising sun

If you’re lonely, hurting, gone too far

To the outcast you come as you are

For you, you are wanted, you, you are wanted

You, you are wanted, you, you are wanted

 

You, you have been marked

You’re set apart

And He calls you His

So you don’t have to search

Don’t have to look for where you belong

You are wanted.