Tag Archives: music

Tuning My Heart to God’s Grace

24 Jun

20150617_181941More often than not lately, I have felt completely overwhelmed. This whole taking care of a newborn and a toddler requires more than a little creativity and patience. I thank God that Annabelle is such an easy baby! Otherwise, I would surely be losing my mind. As it is, I feel more than a little frazzled and brain dead.

Why is it that when I feel overwhelmed and underequipped that I would rather stew in my unpleasantness and misery than run to God? Like Ann Voskamp says,

“For all my yearning for joy, longing for joy, begging for joy–is the bald truth that I prefer the empty dark? Prefer drama? Why do I lunge for control instead of joy? Is it somehow more perversely satisfying to flex control’s muscle? Ah–power–like Satan. Do I think Jesus-grace too impotent to give me the full life? … If I am rejecting the joy that is hidden somewhere deep in this moment–am I not ultimately rejecting God? Whenever I am blind to joy’s well, isn’t it because I don’t believe in God’s care?” (One Thousand Gifts, 130).

In these moments, I need something to pull me out of the depths of my depravity and remind me of truth. The Bible is one way, but I find that worship music makes my heart sing God’s glories far deeper and faster than reading. The two songs that I have been playing on repeat for the past couple of months are Lord, I Need You by Matt Maher and You Make Me Brave by Amanda Cook and Bethel Music. (Click on the links to listen to the songs.)

I wouldn’t say that I’m a lover of poetry necessarily, but there are certain songs that just word things in a way that GET ME. These songs are two of them.

Lord, I Need You

Lord, I come, I confess
Bowing here I find my rest
Without You I fall apart
You’re the One that guides my heart

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

Where sin runs deep Your grace is more
Where grace is found is where You are
And where You are, Lord, I am free
Holiness is Christ in me

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

So teach my song to rise to You
When temptation comes my way
And when I cannot stand I’ll fall on You
Jesus, You’re my hope and stay

You Make Me Brave

I stand before You now
The greatness of your renown
I have heard of the majesty and wonder of you
King of Heaven, in humility, I bow

As Your love, in wave after wave
Crashes over me, crashes over me
For You are for us
You are not against us
Champion of Heaven
You made a way for all to enter in

I have heard You calling my name
I have heard the song of love that You sing
So I will let You draw me out beyond the shore
Into Your grace
Your grace

You make me brave
You make me brave
You call me out beyond the shore into the waves
You make me brave
You make me brave
No fear can hinder now the love that made a way


I praise God for songwriters, singers and musicians. I’m not any one of those things, but I’m so happy they exist!

Running Soundtracks

30 Jan

I love the power of music to transport you back to different times in your life or remind you of things you hadn’t thought about for years. Music reminds me of many different things, but one of the most significant is running.


“Bigger Than My Body” by John Mayer reminds me of running on the treadmill as a sophomore in college, trying to cancel out all the alcohol and pot-induced munchies I had consumed the night before.

“In This Moment” by FFH reminds me of running by the Mississippi River on West River Parkway as a junior in college. As a new believer, I loved the way Christian music reminded me of the new truths that I was learning – and understanding – for the first time.

“Long Way Around” by Dixie Chicks brings back memories of training for my first ever road race – the White Bear Lake Rotary Freedom 10 Mile – the year after I graduated. It was during one of the first miles of that race that Travis first heard me fart. (Hey, it’s hard to hold them in when you’re running!) Driving home from that race, my car was rear-ended and nearly totaled. Luckily, all of us in the car were fine.

In 2010, I ran my heart out to lots of Lady Gaga and “Sexy B!tch” by David Guerra during my first attempt at training for a marathon. I was forced to drop to the half in the Malibu Marathon due to an over-tight IT band.

I listened to at least one song from the album “All Sides” by O.A.R. every workout when training for my Olympic triathlon in 2011. Those songs remind me of running laps on our gym’s tiny, 10-times-around-is-a-mile track.

In 2012, I successfully trained for and ran the Mayor’s Marathon in Anchorage listening to copious amounts of Harry Potter audio books. HA! But I also listened to “Undo It” and “Cowboy Casanova” by Carrie Underwood quite often.

And now, on the cusp of training for my first race post-baby, I have compiled a new playlist – or running soundtrack, if you will. Let’s hope these songs are just as inspiring!

  1. Uprising by Muse
  2. Counting Stars by OneRepublic
  3. Take a Walk by Passion Pit
  4. Roll Away Your Stone by Mumford & Sons
  5. Safe and Sound by Capital Cities
  6. Wake Me Up by Avicii
  7. Best Day of My Life by American Authors
  8. San Francisco by The Mowgli’s
  9. Out of My League by Fitz and the Tantrums
  10. Chocolate by The 1975
  11. Ho Hey by The Lumineers
  12. I Will Wait by Mumford & Sons

What songs are your favorites for running?