when the voice is more important than the song

I have a pretty short list of musicians whose new music I get really geeked out about. It just so happens that several of them are releasing new music within about a month of each other. As I have stated in previous posts, I have a bit of a “man-crush” on a musician named Andrew Peterson. His storytelling ability on top of being a great musician has always led me back to his music on a regular basis.

His new record (which I highly, highly recommend) centers around the idea of lost innocence. Basically it is a record written to his children who are headed into their teenage years reflecting on the experiences they will inevitably face leaving childhood and entering adolescence.

One particular song is written to who I am assuming is his oldest son entitled You’ll find your way really hit me hard. It’s a message from a father to a son who is entering a tumultuous world that will steal his innocence and do everything it can to lead him away from his true Father.

I listened to this song over and over thinking about how my own son would have to face this dark world at some point in the next few years and fought back the tears as I thought about this reality.

But, this post isn’t really about any of that.

I was telling my wife about this song last night and something occurred to me as I was explaining what the song was about. While this song communicates something profound and meaningful for the writer, I have heard some similar songs (mainly country I guess) that I have dismissed as cheesy or even a little sappy.

But, there was something about this song that really spoke to me for some reason. With other songs by other artists I might have been dismissive but with Peterson, I was moved.

Peterson has earned my ear over the years by producing great art and timely lyrics that come from a place that is genuine and rooted in the greater Story. I know when I listen to his music that he is connected to something deeper and more ancient. And it is because of the deep roots of his music that I can trust the message he is bringing.

So what I am getting at is this: all of us have voices in our lives that have gained credibility and respect and these voices can speak directly to our hearts in ways that other voices just fall flat.

Yet, there’s tragedy about these voices. In my experience, it is incredibly hard to find a voice worth hearing. While that sounds cynical, many of the voices I hear are laden with agendas, politics, expectations, assumptions, and dogma. The voices my generation needs are folks who are willing to invest themselves into other people because they themselves are invested in something deeper and greater than themselves.

So hear me on these thoughts:

  1. We all need deep, meaningful voices speaking truth into our walk. I encourage you to pray for God to rise up this person (or people ) to fill this role.
  2. There are multitudes around you who need your voice, not your agenda or expectations. What if you decided to invest in another person just, because? What would that look like?
  3. Others need to be encouraged to share their voice. Pray for a friend who you know has something to contribute but for whatever reason, they struggle to engage in mentoring relationships.

We need trustworthy voices speaking into our walk. Our voices are so desperately needed.

How does this idea strike you?

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One thought on “when the voice is more important than the song

  1. I have to thank you again for introducing me to Andrew Peterson’s music. He’s an amazing lyricist and one of my very favorite artists! I can’t wait to get his new stuff!

    I remember hearing a lesson one time about sheep knowing the shepherd’s voice and following him where he leads. My first thought was one of mistrust. Could I trust where the shepherd would lead me? What if his voice was false? My experience had taught me that not all voices were trustworthy. BUT, when I finally learned to trust the shepherd’s voice, everything changed. With practice, I got better about discerning which voices lead me to life, and those that didn’t.

    All of that to say I agree with you – we lean towards and follow the voices that have proven themselves to us. Eventually we become that voice for others, but sometimes we forget, or get caught up in who is or isn’t listening to our voice. Wouldn’t it be amazing if we always had the confidence to speak without the worry, or listen without the fear?

    Great post, Chris! 🙂

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