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Hear the Rocks Cry Out

Hear the Rocks Cry Out

Today is my birthday.

On this date twenty-five years ago, I entered this world. Opened my eyes for the first time. Joined the ranks of beating hearts.

For every birthday since, there has been one thing that has always remained constant. After every celebration, I have found my feet firmly planted on the ground. My view of life around me: horizontal and concrete.

Very different from the view I see today–vertical and ever-changing.

On this birthday there will be 39,000 feet between the ground and me.

The truth is, there have been 39,000 feet between the ground and me a lot lately. I have stepped onto twenty flights in the last ten weeks.

Every pilot has landed the plane somewhere new and unfamiliar to me, so I’ve spent plenty of time with my nose pressed to the glass drinking in new sights. I indulge in the beautiful luxury of stillness, my forehead leaning on the window beside me as I sit quietly and watch the world go by.

There is something really special about the view from up that high. The land below stretches out and falls away making it look small and enormous in the same glance. I’m suddenly gazing at a vast topographical model like the ones you see in museums. Instead of one battlefield or city, I see everything. All of it. Stretching farther than my eyes can reach.

Flat farmlands connect like patches on a quilt. Colors and patterns threaded together by dirt roads.

Rivers wind and twist, running like veins across the earth, flowing, giving life to stagnant things.

Clouds float delicately alongside, so close you could reach out and touch them. They are never concerned by the strangers passing through their midst.

Some mountains rise up in friendly competition, each one stretching higher than the last. Others have their chests puffed out proudly, reveling in their glittery crowns of snow. They all stand stoically beside one another like broad-shouldered soldiers vowing solemnly to protect the valley below.

Canyons carved in the dry places, always watching the clouds beside you waiting for rain to refill their cracked walls.

Pools of lake water–puddles of sky fallen to the earth–are nestled sweetly between the hills, waiting with kindness for the wanderer who approaches thirsty for beauty and peace.

It’s clarifying in the most soul-clearing way. It’s perspective. It’s zooming out to remember for a moment that the world is big and I am small. Those mountains have stood at their posts since long before I entered this world twenty-five years ago and will go on standing without my help or permission for years to come.

I see the topographical model of my life so far. Twenty-five years stretched out behind me. Dry deserts, mountain peaks, valley beds, running rivers. Every part singing a different note in harmony to the same song.

You can hear them all the way up there, you know—39,000 feet in the air. You can still hear the rocks.

I imagine they sing out in a sweet, tenor tone. The trees in the forests join in with a rich alto, and the mountains belt out in strength and provide the foundational bass. And the running waters of the rivers sing a clear soprano melody.

You can hear them all the way up here, crying out to their Creator. Singing a never-ending song of His faithfulness.

“The Lord has promised good to me

His Word my hope secures

He will my shield and portion be

As long as life endures.”

-Amazing Grace, Chris Tomlin

I can’t think of a better place to be on my birthday than right here, 39,000 feet in the air, joining in the song.

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Music Monday

Music Monday

Back by popular *demand, here’s another Music Monday.

*Popular demand also goes by Lacy Triplett, who is a true pal and wanted to know more of what I was listening to these days.

1. Alive in Me-JJ Weeks Band

I had the privilege of hearing the JJ Weeks band perform an acoustic version of this song earlier last week. This is a single from their upcoming album, As Long As We Can Breathe. 

Untold-Matthew West

Fair warning: you should grab a tissue before you press play on this one. It’ll getcha.

Every Giant Will Fall-Rend Collective

I don’t know about you, but my Monday has BEEN a Monday. This little tune from Rend Collective’s latest album, As Family We Go, will give you some much needed encouragement this evening.

Slow Down Time-Us the Duo

As I mentioned in my last Music Monday, I am obsessed with the duos these days. This couple is largely responsible for that. This is their latest single, and to be honest, I hated it the first time I heard it. Now, I can’t get enough. Even if they aren’t your typical style, give it a chance (or maybe two).

I Love You Will Still Sound the Same-Oh Honey

Again, with the duos. Not only do I love their name–(isn’t Oh Honey the most precious band title you’ve ever heard?)–but I love their sound. And this song is about twelve different types of darling.

Suitcase Full of Sparks-Gregory Alan Isakov

I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, and I’m guessing the same rule applies for judging songs by their titles. But I do both of those things, so I loved this song before I heard it all the way through. His name may sound like a character from a Tolstoy novel, but his voice sounds like melted butter.

The Tall Fiddler-Tommy Emmanuel

This one is a little bit of a deviation from my normal style. I had never heard of this man before this weekend. Some friends from Florence took me to see his show at the Ryman on Saturday night, and y’all–I was BLOWN. AWAY. This man is so incredibly talented. He made that one instrument sound like four. The whole night, I just kept thinking, “How does one person walk around with that much talent in his body?” When asked how I liked the show, all I could say was, “I had no idea a guitar could sound like that!”

And now, because it’s Leap Day, here’s a bonus video that will brighten the rest of your week, I’m sure. Try not to smile when Ben sings this classic. I dare you.

I Wanna Dance With Somebody-Ben Rector

Happy Monday!

 

 

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Music Monday

Music Monday

If you’ve ever ridden in my car (or had me as a passenger in your car) you will know that, usually, the first words out of my mouth are, “Hey have you heard this song/band?” Not only do I like to discover new (or new-to-me) music, I am not satisfied until I have made someone else fall in love with my new finds.

So, since I don’t have many folks riding in my car these days, and since you are the poor souls that clicked on this blog, you are my new victims.

Grab a seat, get comfortable, and prepare to treat your ears to some great tunes.

My Current Top Seven Jams:

Though I did include a pretty significant throwback track, along with some already established music names, you should know that several of these folks are brand new artists. That means that once you move through their limited selection, you’ll be ready to form a mob, go right to their doorsteps, and demand more songs featuring their beautiful vocal cords.

  1. Oh My Love-The Score

I’ve recently developed an obsession with duos, typically of the male and female variety. However, these two guys circulated through one of my Pandora stations and immediately caught my attention. Their fun lyrics and dance-able rhythms have made me a raving fan. I recommend checking out their whole EP, Where Do You Run.

  1. Polaroid-Imagine Dragons

It saddens me to think of all the time I spent underestimating Imagine Dragons, assuming that all they had going for them were a few radio hits (i.e. “On Top of the World,” “It’s Time,” etc.). I will gladly admit to being wrong. Though I haven’t made it all the way through the twenty-one track deluxe version of Smoke & Mirrors, I have yet to hear a song I didn’t like. This song is one you’ll want to crank up on your morning commute. Don’t worry if you start to involuntarily dance/bob your head/play an imaginary set of drums. It’s a pretty standard response to “Polaroid.”

  1. Lost Boy-Ruth B.

Y’all. This girl. She is crazy talented. For her debut EP, it’s just the simple power of her voice and a piano. She brings raw honesty in both her lyrics and her vocal tone. After a six-second Vine of this song went viral, she wrote the rest of the tune and included it on the four-track EP, The Intro.  It’s a little weird and quirky, but it is BEAUTIFUL.

  1. Hypnotize Me-Taylor Berrett

One word: SWOON. This song is so fun and is often blaring through my room while I get ready for work in the morning. His debut album was released last year and is full of great tracks like this one. So you might as well just open Spotify and stream the whole album, because this song will definitely leave you wanting more of his voice.

  1. Live at Rockwood Hall-Johnnyswim

Stop what you’re doing and go listen to this album. And, while you’re at it, you might as well listen to every other song this husband and wife duo has ever recorded. Then, allow yourself to cry openly about the fact that you’ll have to wait until June for their next record.

  1. Heart Won’t Stop-John Mark McMillan

I recently had the opportunity to hear John Mark at a show here in Nashville. To put it lightly, I was blown away. I have, of course, crossed paths with JMM followers, but have never really investigated for myself. Not only if his voice great, his lyrics are powerful. This song is a perfect display of both of those facets.

  1. Orphans of God-Avalon

This is clearly my token throwback. I grew up listening to Avalon and have always loved their music. But occasionally, I run across a song I haven’t heard in years and the Lord uses the freshness and familiarity of it to speak straight to my heart. This is one of those songs. The lyrics are powerful, the music is incredible, and the message is overwhelming. Grab a few tissues before you hit play. Trust me, you’ll need them before it’s over.

I hope you enjoy this list of my current favorites! Now it’s your turn. What are you listening to today? Tell me in the comments below!

 

 

 

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