Current favorites: Come to the Well (Casting Crowns)

Ever since I downloaded the album last month, Casting Crowns’ latest musical effort Come to the Well has been on repeat on my iPod. For some reason — yes, hello there, God — nearly every song speaks to me, calling me to confess, to repent, to pray, to long for God to move in the world around me.

I find my heart resonating with lead singer Mark Hall’s cries to the church (all Christians), who he has called out repeatedly in the band’s albums with words of rebuke and encouragement:
“If we are the body, why aren’t His arms reaching?”
“Are we happy plastic people, under shiny plastic steeples…?”
“Oh Lord, send Your wind into this valley; breathe the breath of life into our souls…”

My personal story is one of self-righteousness — the haughty church kid (and older sister) who would hold my ideas of perfect morality in front of people’s faces, rather than showing them with delight the face of the Jesus I claimed to serve. Hall’s effort to call out the church on its failures is something that often hits all too close to home. And yet, it hurts in just the right way.

So much of this CD brings me to my knees. There is so much beauty and forgiveness to be found in Jesus.

A few song samples:

“Jesus, Friend of Sinners”

This song calls out people on our ability to criticize others without first looking at ourselves and seeing our own failures. The hypocritical Christian, Hall says, is “a plank-eyed saint with dirty hands and a heart divided.” Wow, what an image. Instead, Christians are to become like Christ, and show mercy as He did at the cross.

Oh Jesus, friend of sinners,
Open our eyes to the world at the end of our pointing fingers
Let our hearts be led by mercy
Help us reach with open hearts and open doors
Oh Jesus, friend of sinners,
Break our hearts for what breaks yours

Lyrics here

“The Well”

Jesus gives life and freedom to all who come to him in search for it. Surrendering to Jesus in obedience to Him is truly the most freeing decision we could ever make. This song encourages the hurting, saying that Jesus is the One to whom we can come with all our baggage and struggles, honestly lay everything that we are at His feet, and walk away more alive than before we came.

I was especially struck by the lyrics that mention specific things to surrender to Jesus: “your pursuit of perfection, your fear of rejection…” It’s as if the singers read my mind and saw the weights I needed to drop at Jesus’ feet.

All who thirst will thirst no more,
and all who search will find what their souls long for…

Lyrics here

“Just Another Birthday”

Stemming from Hall’s experiences as a youth pastor, the song tells the story of a teenage girl longing for love while growing up without a father. This song breaks my heart, gives me chills, and makes me smile every time I hear it. It’s best to let the song speak for itself:

Lyrics here


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