For some, music is a core element of their worship. In addition to the sadness of not being able to meet in person with God’s people, it can be hard to have a song in your heart when you’re anxious about the state of the world right now.
We’ve asked three Sydney songwriters to give us a list of 10 songs they turn to when they need encouragement in their faith, or during times of anxiety, pain and doubt.
Music and song have a powerful ability to evoke emotions, affect emotions, help us express emotions and aid in the resolution of painful emotions. The power of song is even more pronounced, and Christian song most of all. For in Christian song, words of truth combine with the power and/or beauty of the music to enable a feeling of the truth. For in bringing together words and music, thoughts and feeling, intellect and affection, songs enable us to grasp not only the cognitive reality of words we’re hearing (or, even better, singing) but their emotional reality as well. This makes music and profound blessing not only in seasons of joy but also in seasons of sorrow.
"Songs enable us to grasp the emotional reality"
In fact, as many of the psalms illustrate, faithful songs of sorrow are one of God’s great gifts for helping his children process their pain and awaken genuine hope in his sovereign grace.
1.It Is Well With My Soul – Horatio Spafford
2.Great Is Thy Faithfulness – Thomas Chisholm
3.10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord) – Jonas Myrin/Matt Redman
4.He Will Hold Me Fast – Robert Harkness
5.Abide with Me – Henry Francis Lyte
6.Beauty will rise – Steven Curtis Chapman
7.Our God is in control – Steven Curtis Chapman
8.Faithful – Steven Curtis Chapman
9.Who am I? – Casting Crowns
10.The Perfect Wisdom of our God – Keith Getty and Stuart Townend
The great joy of knowing our heavenly Father in this season is that we can bring every thought, fear, challenge and worry that rises up directly to him. As I reflect and listen to songs filled with his promises from his word, I am filled with a renewed hope and joy in Jesus the author and perfecter of my faith.
1. Forever Now a Crown – Shelly Moore
2. We Will Feast – Sandra McCracken
3. His Mercy is More – Matt Boswell and Matt Papa
4. Lord From Sorrows Deep I Call – Matt Boswell and Matt Papa
5. Yet Not I but Through Christ in Me – CityAlight
6. Centre of All History – Steffany Gretzinger and Matt Maher
7. Jesus, Strong and Kind – CityAlight (featuring Colin Buchanan)
8. Rock of Ages (When The Day Seems Long) – Sandra McCracken
9. Give Me Jesus – Fernando Ortega
10. O Come to the Altar – Elevation Worship
Over the years these songs, and the albums they’re a part of, have nourished my soul. Some of them I have lived on daily for courage and hope during seasons of unrelenting worry and doubt. They are not perfect songs written by perfect songwriters, and I join that list of imperfect people looking forward to the day when we will join our voices together in perfect unity praising our great God and Father and his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Until then may they be a blessing to you.
1.Take Courage – Bethel Music
2. King of my Heart – Bethel Music
3. Surrounded (Fight my Battles) – Michael W. Smith
4. God Moves in a Mysterious Way – William Cowper
5. A Christian's Daily Prayer – Sovereign Grace Music
6. Glorious – Sovereign Grace Music
7. Way Maker – Leeland
8. Better Word – Leeland
9. Your Love Never Fails – Jesus Culture
10. Sovereign over us by Michael W. Smith