This world seems to be spinning out of control. Terrorism and social agendas consume every headline. Violence and hatred are everywhere. In America, the worldview is rapidly changing, and sometimes it seems like the church is losing its voice completely in society. We are confused, despondent, and, apart from our social media posts, pretty much silent amidst the chaos. Fear of governmental or societal backlash has backed us into a corner, and we don’t seem to know the way out. I think we have forgotten that in the midst of persecution, the early church saw its most fruitful days. In a time when there were life-threatening consequences, men and women stood boldly and proclaimed Christ without apology. Sadly, this is not the case in the American church. Though we face confusion and fear, I’m asking the Lord to strengthen our resolve. I’m asking Him for songs we can sing – a message to confront the needs of this hurting world. A large part of that message is hope. In Romans 12:12, 13 Paul writes, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.” God’s church must rise up and unite under the banner of hope in Christ. Songs carry the message of the gospel in a way that words alone may never accomplish. Music speaks to our emotions; it stirs our souls.
In this context, I co-wrote the song “Hope Is Rising” with veteran artist and songwriter, Cindy Morgan. The Lord has given us a musical heart-cry for the church, and this song reminds us that, in Jesus’ strength, all things are possible. We are seeing the current generation embrace this concept – to see His Kingdom come and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven. I am praying that the older generation will rise up alongside them and carry this message of hope to the world. Hurting people are looking in all the wrong places for the truth that will set them free. We need to point them to Jesus. We need to point them to hope.
Click here to view the video for “Hope Is Rising.”
Hope Is Rising is the the follow-up to the 2014 Dove-nominated Jesus, Hope of the World worship collection and is being released by Sherwood Worship and LifeWay Songs. Hope is the centerpiece of the project, reminding us that we have an anchor to hold onto in Christ. On Sunday, October 9, Sherwood Worship is doing a live recording to capture these new songs for both video and audio release. Full orchestrations and choir charts will be available from LifeWay in early 2017.