A FUTURE NOT MY OWN

( MATT MAHER, JASON INGRAM, PAUL MOAK)

This song was inspired by a prayer from Archbishop Oscar Romero. The spirit of the prayer suggests it’s good to take a step back and consider the long view and remember that you are not God and you can’t see the end result of things. The last line of the prayer is what really struck me. Romero said, ‘We are prophets of a future not our own.’ And I thought, That’s what I need. I need a future that doesn’t belong to me. I decided to write a song based on what would happen if somebody read that prayer. What would their response be? The song became a response to the prayer, ‘God, I need a future not my own. I need a future that’s not of my design.’ This was one of the first songs written for the record that describes the cry of the human heart that doesn’t have a clear sense of where things are going and is looking for a sense of direction.

God slow me down

I'm like a river running

Pressed to the ground

I feel it overcoming

I'm on my knees

I'm incomplete

 

This is a great unknown

Love is a long and narrow road

Come chase this heart of stone

I need a future not my own

 

Your spirit groans

Where all my words are ceasing

Can't do this alone

Lord help my unbelieving

My poverty

I'm incomplete 

We see the start but You see the end

We see in part but Your love sees everything

We plant the seeds but You make them grow

We're building a house, You're building a home

This is the great unknown

Love is a long and narrow road

Come chase this heart of stone

I need a future not my own

This world is not my home

I still have miles and miles to go

Come break this heart of stone

I need a future not my own

 

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Sony/ATV Timber Publishing / Open Hands Music (SESAC) / Paul Moak Publishing / Universal Music - Brentwood Benson Publ. (ASCAP) (Adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com)


DELIVERER

(Matt Maher, Bo Rineheart, Bear Rineheart)

This song's a very personal song for me. I've been a huge believer in the band NEEDTOBREATHE for a long time and their ability to create music that goes beyond the fringes of the church, so I was honored they were willing to offer this haunting verse and chorus to this song that Bear [Rinehart] wrote out of his own conversation and experience. Coupled with that, the bridge was inspired by my recent experience as a dad. My son, Conor, was struggling with being afraid of the dark. So I tried writing what might be the antithesis of what he was feeling, trying to imagine what it must be like to be a kid and to have those moments where literally there's no fear-just total trust. I've never worked harder to capture that kind of moment; one of a heart cry-that sense of liberation. This bridge is probably my favorite moment on the record.

I was a drifter, I had nowhere to go

I was hanging by threads of dust and bone

Every angel I knew was singing son come home

But the melody was hard to sing along

 

Oh God, You’re my deliverer

The One, the One who carries us

Oh God, You’re my deliverer

 

I was on trial for everything I did

And there’s no way I could make a stand and win

When you realize the verdict is already in

You let go of the brokenness within

Well there’s only One who can ever stand and win

 

Oh God, You’re my deliverer

The One, the One who carries us

Oh God, You’re my deliverer

The One, the One who carries us

And now I’m like a child at night

Who never has to think of why

We’re free to love and live and die

And there’s no need to justify

The sinner that’s inside of me

Has lost all his control of me

My God, from the flood and from the fire

You brought me out, I am alive

With a faith, just like a child

I’m not afraid, I’m running wild

For everything that will be done

I am yours and you are my

Deliverer

The One, the One who carries us

God, You’re my deliverer

The One, the One who carries us

Oh God, You’re my deliverer

The One, the One who carries us

Oh God, You’re my deliverer

The One, the One who carries us

God, You’re my deliverer

 

I was hanging by threads of dust and bone

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Bronco Music (BMI) (Adm. by Bluewater Music) / Holy Smoking Gun Music (BMI) (Adm. by Bluewater Music)


GLORY BOUND

(Matt Maher, Chris Stevens, Hank Bentley)

This song is based on an old Woody Guthrie song that's been around for awhile called 'This Train is Bound for Glory.' If you look at the lyrics, it basically talks about how there's no room on the train for anybody but the saved. All the scum of the earth-they're basically done for. I understand the intent of what the song was trying to say, but it creates a false narrative. Jesus talks about separating the sheep and the goats and the wheat from the chaff; but He talks about it in the context of the end of time. As the church, we're really content to take on that role ourselves and go ahead and do it for Him. The problem is, when you do that, you're limiting grace. There's so many great men and women throughout history who have had conversations at the end of their lives! That's how audacious and scandalous grace is. So I started writing a song called 'Glory Bound' with the idea that there's a train for everybody, and I don't know which way your train's going, but I do know you've been forgiven.

There is a train for the broken hearted

 

To carry you to the other side

There is a train for the ones forgotten

To carry you to a Heavenly light

 

Well I don’t know which way you’re going

And I don’t know if you’re lost or found

All that I know is you’ve been forgiven

I tell you this train is glory bound

 

There is a train for the cheats and liars

For all the hitchers looking for a ride

There is a train for the lonely drifter

Tired of walking all alone in the night

So come on make some room in your heart for mercy

Come on make some room for a little grace

Come on make some room for the sinners and the saints

 

Well I don’t know which way you’re going

And I don’t know if you’re lost or found

All that I know is you’ve been forgiven

I tell you this train is glory bound

And I can hear a band of angels

Amazing grace how sweet the sound

All that I know is you’ve been forgiven

I tell you this train is glory bound

Glory bound, hey yea

I tell you this train is glory bound

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Meaux Mercy (BMI) Moody Producer Music (BMI) (adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com) / Hank Bentley designee


LAND OF MY FATHER

(Matt Maher, Leslie Jordan, David Leonard, Luke Hellenbronth, Paul Moak)

I had been in England, writing with Luke Hellenbroth, a guy from a great church there. I had this idea for a song based on 'Thee Our Father,' all the while looking at the kingdom of God as 'the land of my father.' It's an allegory for heaven in a way. I finished the song with David Leonard and Leslie Jordan from All Sons &Daughters. They're tremendous songwriters. That song, and even where it sits on the record, is what I call the 'honeymoon phase' of the Christian life, where there's a sense of enjoying who God is and what He's doing in your life. If somebody's on a journey, this is where the weather's great and it's a nice day out. There are those moments. Just like there are moments as a parent where you kids are great, they're dancing along to a Taylor Swift song, and you think it's the cutest thing in the world; and life's great.

There’s a sweetness in Your presence

All Your children running home

Singing songs of exultation

Lifting up Your name

 

In the land of my Father, oh my soul will sing

 

Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty

We sing Holy, Holy, my eyes have seen the glory

Of the great God Almighty

There’s a patience in Your Spirit

Waiting for that day to come

Peace beyond all understanding

Never-ending joy

 

God Your goodness, I have tasted

Jesus I have seen

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Integrity’s Praise! Music (BMI) (Adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com) / Integrity’s Alleluia! Music (SESAC) (Adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com) / Thankyou Music (PRS) (adm. worldwide at CapitolCMGPublishing.com excluding Europe which is adm. by Integritymusic.com)/ Paul Moak Publishing / Universal Music - Brentwood Benson Publ. (ASCAP) (Adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com)


EVERYTHING IS GRACE

(Matt Maher, Mia Fieldes, Jason Ingram)

One of my favorite saints was St. Therese of Lisieux, 'The Little Flower.' She was born in France and entered the convent at a very young age and died of tuberculosis in her early 20s. Years after her death, they found her diary. In Catholicism, she's considered a spiritual giant; a heavyweight. She had a spiritual practice called 'The Little Way,' and everything she did, she did it with the utmost level of intentionality, whether it was sweeping floors or washing dishes or making beds or cleaning bed pans. She offered a great quote that said, 'Everything is grace. Everything is a direct result of the Father's love for us. So no matter the difficulties you face, however trivial or serious, they're basically all an opportunity.' You reach a point in your journey where all of a sudden things start going wrong in life and it's OK. Everything is grace. Everything is an opportunity. Eleven years ago, I wrote ' Your Grace Is Enough,' and 11 years later, it's still the case.

Your joy, when the morning comes

Your hope, keeps me looking up

You are enough

Your peace, the eye of every storm

Your strength, when my heart is worn

You are enough

 

Whatever comes my way

I will walk through the flames

You’re turning my fear to faith

My doubt to praise

And everything is grace

 

Your love, when the wait is long

Your voice, keeps me holding on

You are enough

My delight, when bitterness comes close

My portion, the only thing I know

You are enough

 

Whatever comes my way

I will walk through the flames

You’re turning my fear to faith

My doubt to praise

And everything is grace

True in the pouring rain

True in the crashing waves

It’s true even in my pain, my heart can say

That everything is grace

Time after time, Your redemption is mine

Again and again, Your grace is everything

 

You’re turning my fear to faith

My doubt to praise

And everything is grace

True in the pouring rain

True in the crashing waves

He’s true even in my pain, my heart can say

That everything is grace

Woah, my heart can say

That everything is grace

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / Upside Down Under (BMI) / Sony/ATV Timber Publishing / Open Hands Music (SESAC)


SONS AND DAUGHTERS

(Matt Maher, Jason Ingram, Ike Ndolo)

If you're following God, eventually you start loving the things He loves, and you care about the things He cares about. Moving to Nashville, the South, I encountered a greater understand that so much of the American tradition of music was born out of the slavery movement-rock'n'roll, gospel, country, R&B, hip-hop. It all goes back to a group of people who were enslaved and who desired freedom. I had been wanting to write a song based on the speech 'We Shall Overcome' by Dr. Martin Luther King. I had begun writing this song with Jason Ingram. I asked a buddy of mine-fellow worship leader and songwriter Ike Ndolo, who grew up in Columbia, Missouri-to write with me. I took what we had started, and asked Ike to, 'Draw from your experience as an African-American male living in the shadow of the civil rights movement still praying for all those things to bear their fruit.' It's really the job of the church  today to finished what was started in the '60s. Just because you can outlaw racial discrimination doesn't mean you get rid of it. This heart behind this song was to inspire other people. I have to think that there are other leaders in the church right now who have a burden on their heart to help lead a movement like this. I think it's the centerpiece of the whole record; it's a really special moment.

How free is anyone, when some are still in chains

Slaves to brokenness, all this blindness

How free is anyone, when all these doubts remain

In the dead of night, no sign of the light

Child don’t grow weary, soon we will see the sun

All my brothers help each other

All my sisters walk together

No one is a stranger

We’re all sons and daughters

 

Join hands with everyone, don’t you hear the song we sing

Oh there might be tears, but we are more than our fears

We are marching on, but there’s a price we have to pay

For love means taking on, the weight of what was won

Child don’t grow weary, soon we will see the sun

All my brothers help each other

All my sisters walk together

No one is a stranger

We’re all sons and daughters

Help each other

All my sisters walk together

No one is a stranger

We’re all sons and daughters

 

We shall overcome, we shall overcome

The victory is won, oh we shall overcome

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Sony/ATV Timber Publishing / Open Hands Music (SESAC) / Ike Ndolo designee


FIRELIGHT

(Matt Maher, Mia Fieldes, Hank Bentley)

One of my favorite stories of someone who struggled and had a very dark side was Mother Teresa. She went through extensive effort to start a religious order. She became a nun, started her own order of nuns and then moved to India; and immediately the presence of God disappeared from her life, and she didn't feel anything. She started writing letters to her spiritual director, confessing all of her internal struggles. At the same time, her ministry blew up and next thing you know, everyone is finding out about this nun from Calcutta, and everyone loves her. All the while, she was having these moments where she struggled and felt so weak and God felt so distant. She offered a quote that says, 'If I ever do become a saint, I will surely be one of darkness. For I will not be content to roam the streets of heaven while there's one soul who still longs for God.' Her quote captures that hunger of a person, who in the midst of struggle, still loves the marginalized and still loves the oppressed. 'Firelight' is a song about disillusionment and that very frail prayer of asking God to burn and shine in the midst of that and to continue to light the way through darkness.

Dear Jesus where are you tonight

I bear a sadness deep inside

I’m aching for a faith in things I strain to feel

I need to know that you are real

Oh Savior open up my eyes

I wanna see You like a child

There is a haze on the horizons of my heart

Dear Jesus show me where you are

 

Be my firelight, be my firelight

Burning fierce and bright, be my firelight

 

How do I move on and be free

From all these things that I have seen

All of my memories are turning into scars

Oh my God put back what’s been torn apart

If anyone remembers my name

If I’m ever known for anything

Let it be I ran into the night

Running with a firelight, firelight

Cause I don’t wanna stroll the streets of gold

While there’s still a soul to love

Let me run into the night

Running with a firelight, firelight

Burning with a firelight, firelight

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / Upside Down Under (BMI) / Hank Bentley designee


INSTRUMENT

(Matt Maher, Jon Foreman)

The prayer of St. Francis is a huge source of inspiration in my life. It's such a simple and beautiful prayer. It was written in France and attributed to St. Francis because it seemed to have his character and the dynamic of his spirituality. 'Instrument' is my way of weighing in on a lot of things that are happening right now. the chorus is inspired by the song that St. Francis actually did write, which was 'All Creatures of Our God and King,' in which there is a reoccurring link that says, 'Oh praise Him.' Jon Foreman has always struck me as a St. Francis type person in the sense that he's a man who has universal appeal as an artist, and he and St. Francis both have been advocates for peace. Obviously, Switchfoot has tried to use their platform in major ways to talk about peace and to promote a less combative relationship between church and the world. So it seemed fitting that Jon and I collaborated about this song together.

Where there is hatred Lord, let me sow your love

Where there’s injury, let forgiveness be enough

Are we giving up, fighting the good fight

Where there is despair, just a flicker in the flame

Could break the veil of night

 

To the Father and the Son

And the Holy Spirit, three in One

I offer you myself, though I’m broken and spent

Let me be Your instrument

May I never seek, to be consoled as to console

May I understand, to be loved is to love

 

Oh praise Him, Halleluiah

I offer you myself, though I’m broken and spent

Let me be Your instrument

 

Let there be peace, pardoned in the pardoning

Born again when we die, You have raised us to new life

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Rubadub Rublishing Publishing (ASCAP)  


ABIDE WITH ME

(Matt Maher, David Crowder, Jason Ingram, Matt Redman)

I've always been inspired by hymns. My maternal grandparents were a Baptist preacher and an organist. Being raised Catholic, it's strange that the first time you start hearing some of these hymns, there's something in your DNA that resonates. One was a really beautiful hymn, "Abide with Me." As a believer, even my doubt and disillusionment have to meet Jesus at the cross. I think in our walk with God we get surprised when we end up right back where we started. In some ways, that's the Christian life-learning how  to die so you can experience resurrection. I think sometimes the aching we feel is the realization that we will always be restless until we reach heaven. We have moments where we get glimpses of what that feels like, but there's still a haunting that happens. That's what inspired this song-reaching a point where somebody's willing to at least ask Jesus to help them with that disillusionment and that fear.

I have a home, eternal home

But for now I walk this broken world

You walked it first, You know our pain

But You show hope can rise again up from the grave

 

Abide with me, Abide with me

Don’t let me fall, and don’t let go

Walk with me and never leave

Ever close, God abide with me

 

There in the night, Gethsemane

Before the cross, before the nails

Overwhelmed, alone You prayed

You met us in our suffering and bore our shame

Oh love that will not ever let me go

Love that will not ever let me go

You never let me go

Love that will not ever let me go

Oh You never let us go

 

And up ahead, eternity

We’ll weep no more, we’ll sing for joy, abide with me

 

 

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / David Crowder designee / Sony/ATV Timber Publishing / Open Hands Music (SESAC) / Matt Redman designee  


BECAUSE HE LIVES (AMEN)

(Bill & Gloria Gaither, Matt Maher, Jason Ingram, Ed Cash, Daniel Carson,

This whole record started with the making of this song, which was inspired by the lyric, 'Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.' Being Catholic, I didn't grow up singing that song, but it was a massive song in other denominations. I loved the idea of the phrase, 'Because He lives...'-that realization that because of the resurrection, I'm not dead. The record starts with this prayer of, 'I need a future not my own,' and it ends with the prayer of saying, 'I know He holds my futures in His hands.' I think early on when we don't know God, we pray, 'I'm headed toward disaster. I need a different course for my life.' One reaches a point where you mature in your faith, and you realize God already has the course of your life taken care of. I think it's a hard thing when you fully surrender to the present, and you give that to God, and then you turn around and you are able to slowly trust the mystery if an uncertain future and know that the certainty in it, is God. I wanted to put it toward the end of the record to help create a space where, if somebody hit track one and just let the whole thing run, it would really take them on a journey of arriving back at the most important place, which is the resurrection. Sometimes things have to die in order for them to come to life.

I believe in the Son

I believe in the risen One

I believe I overcome

By the power of His blood

 

Amen, amen

I’m alive, I’m alive

Because He lives

Amen, amen

Let my song join the One that never ends

Because He lives

I was dead in the grave

I was covered in sin and shame

I heard mercy call my name 

He rolled the stone away

 

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow

Because He lives, every fear is gone

I know He holds my life, my future, in His hands

 

© 2014 Hanna Street Music (BMI) (Adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com)/ Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Sony/ATV Timber Publishing / Open Hands Music (SESAC) / Alletrop Music (BMI) (admin. by Music Services) / worshiptogether.com songs / sixsteps music (ASCAP) (Adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com) / Worship Together Music / sixsteps songs / SDG Publishing (BMI) (Adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com)


REST

(Matt Maher, Thad Cockrell)

If you could encapsulate the record into one song, it is this song. I got a text message from Thad Cockrell one morning saying, 'Hey, I have a song idea. I think you're supposed to write it with me...' It was the setting of Psalm 23. At the time, my grandmother, who lived in Phoenix, was getting toward the end of her life, and she was really struggling with the process of dying. So I was very much mindful of her as I wrote this song. Psalm 23 gets quoted a lot at funerals, but it's really an amazing Psalm for people who are going through a time of change. The thing about a valley is, what makes a valley a valley is that there's a mountaintop on the other site of it. You've just got to keep walking, and eventually you'll hit a mountain. But if you're on a mountain, you might want to buckle up. I think God is inviting us to slow down a little bit in the hectic pace of our life and to simply rest in Him. For me, it's the perfect way to end the record.

Oh my Lord, You are my shepherd and I shall not want

Oh my Lord, beside still waters You repair my heart

I trust in You, oh I trust in You

Even though I walk through the valley of death

You restore my soul and You give me rest

All the memories of Your faithfulness

You restore my soul and You give me rest

You restore my soul and You give me rest

You give me rest

Oh my Lord, You prepare a table for You and me

Oh my Lord, in the middle of a fight with my enemies

I trust in You, Oh I trust in You

 

I will fear no evil for You’re here with me

Your goodness and Your love, they will never leave

Just a closer walk with Thee, just a closer walk

 

© 2015 Sony/ATV Tree Publishing / I Am A Pilgrim Songs (BMI) / Little Hoss Publishing (SESAC)


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