8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable,
whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is [e]lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence
and if anything worthy of praise, [f]dwell on these things.
9 The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me,
practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
I love this verse! I didn’t always do this and I wish that I had learned to do this sooner!
When we go through trying and hard times it is our nature to look for someone or something that shows us we are not alone in our pain and suffering. I think that is why a lot of artist’s lyrics are filled with pain and heartache, jaded cadences of what they wished life would have been like. You would think that since they made it so far in their careers and have lots of money and fame that their lyrics couldn’t possibly be about them or their lives but I beg to differ with you!
Look for example at the pop culture sensation, Rihanna and her song “Love The Way You Lie”,
Its hauntingly beautiful tone is instantly liked but if you actually read into her lyrics it is so bittersweet! I have been where she has when it comes to a man that we have given everything to putting their hands on us but what is she teaching this generation with her lyrics?!
How sad is it that she would be so jaded by life that the person that wrote this song would say that “even Angles have their own wicked schemes”?
According to Wikipedia the song, “Love the Way You Lie” is the second single from American rapper Eminem‘s seventh studio album Recovery. American singer Skylar Grey was inspired to write and record the demo with Alex da Kid when she felt that she was in an abusive romantic relationship with the music industry. Eminem then wrote verses to the track and chose Barbadian singer Rihanna to sing the chorus; the collaboration was influenced by their past experiences of domestic violence. Recording sessions were held in Ferndale, Michigan, and Dublin, Ireland. The song is a midtempo hip hop balladwith a pop refrain. Backed by guitar, piano and violin, it describes two lovers who refuse to separate despite being in a love–hate abusive relationship.”
I am a lyric fanatic! The words speak to me and help me to voice the many things that I am feeling and puts into words those emotions in a way that I doubt I ever could! Yet because of this obsession with music and lyrics I have to be careful what I dwell on when I am listening to music. I can easily find genres that can relate to my moods when I am angry, annoyed, bitter, dispondant, apathetic or hurt. The thing I found when listening to those songs that can relate to my mood is that I tend to not only feel the same but often times start feeling even worse!
Could it be that the Bible could actually be relevant today when it comes to the above verse?!?!
(Pardon my sarcasm! =)
Since I am learning that what we take in can have a lasting effect on our thoughts, actions, emotions and habits, I am learning that I need to set my thoughts and actions on the things above. That includes what music I listen to!
I know your instant thought may be of hymns being sung in church when you were little but let me assure you that their are some AMAZING artists that have taken trying and hard times in their lives and put uplifting twists to the lyrics to help a person see that Christian music doesn’t have to be dull and boring or fake and white washed.
Yes Jesus Love’s me is an amazing song but do we really know how much He loves us?!?!
And don’t get me wrong hymns are amazing source of inspiration! Did you know that the hymn “It is Well With My Soul” was written by a grieving father?!
” In a late change of plan, he sent the family ahead while he was delayed on business concerning zoning problems following the Great Chicago Fire. While crossing the Atlantic, the ship sank rapidly after a collision with a sea vessel, the Loch Earn, and all four of Spafford’s daughters died. His wife Anna survived and sent him the now famous telegram, “Saved alone . . .”. Shortly afterwards, as Spafford traveled to meet his grieving wife, he was inspired to write these words as his ship passed near where his daughters had died.
“When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.”
“It Is Well With My Soul”
So don’t discredit hymns altogether! There are many stories like this and how a hymn came to be. Yet I think that they knew better than we how to find the good and think on those things.
I want to give a list of songs that have helped me through my trials, heart ache and fears! I want to be an encouragement and proof that when you think on good, right and noble things your attitude starts to change and you can begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel!
The songs below do not belong to me. They are for the sole purpose of encouraging others and I have no rights to them what so ever.
How Deep the Fathers Love by Joy Williams
Your Not Alone by Meredith Andrews
Let Your Light Shine by Bethany Dillon
My Heart, Your Home by Watermark
If You Want Me To by Ginny Owens
Come As You Are by Pocket Full of Rocks
Untitled Hymn by Chris Rice
Damaged by Plumb
Come and Rest by Considering Lily
The Last Night by Skillet
Your Guardian Angle by Red Jumpsuit Apparatus
Beautiful by Mercyme
“Don’t you know who you are?
You are more than the choices you have made,
You are more than the sum of your past mistakes,
You are more than the problems you create.”
You Are More by Tenth Ave. North
The Proof of Your Love by For King and Country
10,000 Reasons by Matt Redman
Angel by Your side by Francesca Battestelli
Stained Glass Masquerade by Casting Crowns
Does Anybody Hear Her? by Casting Crowns
“But are we happy plastic people, under shiny plastic steeples,
with walls around our weakness, and smiles to hide our pain
But if the invitations open to every heart that has been broken,
maybe then we’ll close the curtain on the stain glass masquarade.”
Hang On by Plumb
Undo Me by Jennifer Knapp
Beloved by Tenth Ave. North
Let it go by Tenth Ave. North
Middle of Your Heart by For King and Country
Everything by Lifehouse
How Many Times by Plumb
Only Hope by Switchfoot
Hope Now by Addison Roads
You never let go of me by Jeremy Camp
“There’s gotta be another way out
I’ve been stuck in a cage with my doubt
I’ve tried forever getting out on my own
Every time I do this my way
I get caught in the lies of the enemy
I lay my troubles down
I’m ready for you now”
On My Own by Ashes Remain
Busted Heart (Hold one to me) by For King and Country
Promise of a Lifetime by Kutless
All Of Me by Matt Hammitt
All This Time by Britt Nicole
Hold my Heart by Tenth Ave. North
From the Inside Out By Phillips Craig and Dean
Center of it all by Chris August
Redeemed by Big Daddy Weave
Yesterday by Matthew West
Gravity by Sara Bareilles
Remind Me Who I am by Jason Gray
There are so many more I am sure that I am forgetting! This list is just a small start of all the amazing songs that have gotten me through such rough times and reminded me that I am not alone!
I hope this list helps you to find the TRUE, RIGHT and PURE! Dwell on these and your perspective of life will being to bring forth a hope that the negative things are in the past and you have an awesome future ahead of you!