Out of Bondage (dust&grooves)

By Steven Shaw

Out of bondage is the last song on this album and it is one of my favorite tracks I’ve ever written. Not only is the song saying much about how great Christ is, it’s just a super fun and groovy track. Read words first then listen to the song. The words go by pretty fast in the song so reading them beforehand will help with hearing all the rich goodness from these old hymn words. Let’s break the words down now.

(Breakdown is written like this)

Out of Bondage

(The main point of this song is that God hasn’t just saved sinners out of their sin, death, and punishment, but He has saved us into and back to His family and self. He invites us to be part and enjoy everything He has to offer)

Out of bondage, sorrow and night,                                                                                                                                                           Into freedom, gladness, and light,
                                                                                                   Out of sickness, into Your health,
                                                                                                  Out of my want, into Your wealth,

(We were enslaved to our passions and desires. Doing whatever we wanted before we knew Christ is what was causing us pain and darkness. Now we are no longer dead and dying but we are made alive and given new life/purpose for life)

Out of my sin, failure and loss,
                                                                                                       Into glory, gain of the cross,
                                                                                                              Out of sorrows into Your balm,
                                                                                                        Out of life’s storms, into Your calm,

(We have been saved from our sin and shame. Now we rest in all Christ did on the cross. God takes us and restores us from this world and gives us joy and peace no matter what the circumstances in our life)

(Chorus)                                                                       

You created us to love You and to praise You

So amazing

Then You saved us in Your glory never ending

So amazing

(God has created us to worship Him. To enjoy Him, to glorify Him and to share Him with others. And that praise will last forever)                                                                                

Out of unrest and arrogant pride,
                                                                                                   Into Your blessed, will to abide,
                                                                                                       Out of myself, to dwell in Your love,
                                                                                                Out of despair, raptures above,

(There is no rest and peace like the peace that comes from knowing God and being in step with His will. The more we push away from Him the more we are unfulfilled. We were made to worship Him alone and when we replace Him with His creations, we are left wanting. But the more we walk with Him, the more we care less about our desires and more about others and His desires. We look towards Him and forward to His return)                                                   

Out of the fear, and dread of the tomb,
                                                                                        Into the joy, light of Your throne,
                                                                                                     Out of the depths, of ruin untold,
                                                                                                   Into the peace, Your sheltering fold,

(Death is always a scary thing because it is the great unknown. But for the Christian, we know exactly what’s going to happen. We haven’t been given details on everything but we have been promised perfect peace and joy for all of eternity and to be face to face with the great God who loves us and that’s exciting stuff!)

(Chorus)                                                                     

Bridge: Jesus I come to Thee, because You first chose me

(God is sovereign over everything in this world, in the past, present and future. In the Bible, we see this on repeat. Nothing happens outside of His will and plan. That means if you are a true follower of Christ, He chose you before you were born. Even before He began this grand story of redemption. You were chosen by Him to be redeemed. You don’t deserve it, have done nothing to earn it and couldn’t believe without His gift of belief)

(Chorus)

https://stevenshawmusic.bandcamp.com/track/out-of-bondage

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O The Deep (dust&grooves)

The fourth song on my album is “O the Deep”. Words are from an old hymn and the rest I wrote. I always need to add or change wording with these old hymns so they are more clear to the hearer and or to fit with the cadence of my song. But this hymn is wordy and the song vibe needed lots of words to fill the groove so the match was perfect. And of course, the words are deep and singing about the best/most important things ever, so that’s a plus. So let’s break the song down a little. Read words first then follow along with the song.

(My breakdown will be written like this)

O The Deep

O the deep, deep love of Jesus, vast, unmeasured,

Boundless, and it’s free! But you must receive

(Jesus is God, the second person of the Trinity. Therefore He was there from the beginning planning the whole redemption story with the Father and Spirit. He loves His creation so much so that He humbled Himself all the way down to human flesh. I don’t think we ponder just how big that is. The most important line here though is “But you must receive”. God’s love is free to any who believe, but the cost was great for Jesus. Therefore there is a response that must happen before we get to experience this Goodness from God)

Rolling as a mighty ocean in its fullness it has

Washed me clean, and now I see.

(We try and try to explain Gods love in a big and mighty way and a mighty ocean, or as deep as the ocean kind of imagery. They all fall very short because we will sing praises to God for all eternity and it still won’t be able to match His worth. But we will try forever)

Underneath me, all around me, is the current

Of Your boundless perfect love, it’s You I trust

Leading onward, leading homeward to Your glories

And Your endless rest above! Cause You are love

(Again the imagery of God’s goodness and love surrounding us, overtaking us like being in a mighty ocean. A place a true satisfaction, peace and joy that nothing in this world can match)

(Chorus)

O the deep love of Jesus

O the deep, deep love of Jesus,

Spread His praises from the shore to shore

And to the furthest seas

How He loves us, ever loves us, changing never,

Nevermore for me, He has set me free

(Now that we have seen and experienced this great goodness and love from God, we must share it with the rest of the world. How can we keep such a good thing to ourselves? If we have truly beheld God’s glory, even just a little, it changes you from the inside out. We can’t be quiet about it)

How He watches over His love, died to call us back to himself

He loves all, but you must believe

How for them He’s interceded, watches over them from the throne High above, in His perfect love

(God has done it all. It’s His work, plan, power alone that has saved His children from their sins)

(Chorus)

Bridge:

O the deep, deep love of Jesus, love of everyone

An ocean full of rest!

O the deep, deep love of Jesus, it’s open up to me;

From Him, I have received

(When we are changed by God, we must love Gods people because He loves them. And when we practice that kind of life, that’s when we truly grow in God and experience God in a real way. We meet God in the scripture and then we respond to God by loving others)

(Chorus)

https://stevenshawmusic.bandcamp.com/track/o-the-deep

 

Deliver Me (dust&grooves)

By Steven Shaw

Deliver me is the third song on the album and it’s been a favorite for a long time. I wrote it about 5 years ago and played it at church multiple times but only when it makes sense with the sermon. It’s a very different kind of a worship song as you’ll learn. I wrote it from Psalm 3.

Read the Psalm first, then the words to the song and then listen to it. You’ll notice the first two verses sing “Arise, deliver me, break the teeth of the wicked”. What a weird thing to sing right? But that’s straight from the Psalm. But what are the Psalms missing? Jesus! Not that they don’t talk about a coming Savior of Gods people but Jesus hasn’t come yet so there’s no work of Christ to be written about plainly. As we get to the bridge we enter Jesus work into the song. And the last chorus sings, “He rose, delivered me, even though I was wicked”. I love this! Enjoy and always dwell upon the beauty of Gods grace in the lives of His children.

Psalm 3

O LORD, how many are my foes!

Many are rising against me;

many are saying of my soul,

“There is no salvation for him in God.” Selah

But you, O LORD, are a shield about me,

my glory, and the lifter of my head.

I cried aloud to the LORD,

and he answered me from his holy hill. Selah

I lay down and slept;

I woke again, for the LORD sustained me.

I will not be afraid of many thousands of people

who have set themselves against me all around.

Arise, O LORD!

Save me, O my God!

For you strike all my enemies on the cheek;

you break the teeth of the wicked.

Salvation belongs to the LORD;

your blessing be on your people! Selah

 

Deliver Me

To the Lord I cry aloud. He answers me from His holy place.

I lye down to sleep, I wake up again because the Lord sustains me

I will not fear the many raised up against me

(Chorus)

Arise deliver me, break the teeth of the wicked.

Many rise against me. They say of my soul “there’s no salvation there”.

You oh Lord are my shield, My glory and the lifter of my head

(Chorus)

Bridge:

Jesus cried aloud, Father forgive them,

They know not what they do. And He took all my sin

Even though I nailed His hands. His still rescued me

He’ll return and judge evil. But Jesus has pardoned me.

(Chorus)

He rose, delivered me, even though I was wicked

 

https://stevenshawmusic.bandcamp.com/track/deliver-me

 

 

Weeping Prophet (dust&grooves)

By Steven Shaw

I wrote this song a few years ago and knew it was something special. As soon as I put my friend and pastors sermon over the instrumental parts it was gold. Such a powerful message and important truth for all of God’s children to remember. For this song, I would suggest following along with the words and listening to it at the same time. I broke down the meaning of “Wounded for Me” yesterday, but this song says enough with the sermon. Listen and read along, you’ll be blessed.

https://stevenshawmusic.bandcamp.com/track/weeping-prophet-2

Sermon: Where is Gods response, we wonder will suffering than have the last word? Will despair be triumphant in the life of a man dedicated to obeying God? God says in Chapter 1 before you were born I set you apart and I have appointed you as a prophet for the nations

Among Your wrath please love, restore Your servant, Lord 
                                                    Or let a Father’s prove, like an avenger’s sword.                                                                       Your arrows stick in my heart, my flesh is sorely pressed
                                                Between the sorrow the smart, my spirit finds no rest.

Sermon: Why is He not acting? If we don’t have a theology of suffering, if suffering doesn’t fit into our idea of what Christianity is, then we’ll say, “better had I died in my mother’s womb”.

My sins a heavy burden, over my head are gone
                                                                      Too heavy for me to bear, I can not atone.                                                                                    My thoughts are like a troubled seas, my head still bending down
                                                I go mourning all the day, beneath my Father’s frown.

(Chorus)                                                                                                                                                You are my God, my only hope, my God will hear my cry! 
                                                        My God will bear my spirit up when Satan bids me die.

Sermon: Ephesians 1:4 “for He”, God, “chose us in Him” Christ, before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight”. Chosen to be happy did it say? Chosen to be comfortable, chosen to walk on easy street? No, God has chosen you to be holy. Set apart for Him without blemish or stain of sin. And He is working that out in your life right now. He is able to use the pain and sin and suffering of this world, that even the works of the enemy to accomplish His task. It’s not your happiness, but your holiness, so that you might be able to dwell with God eternally. He has the end goal in mind. He knows what He’s working towards. And it’s in that way the He will be most glorified. Paul, writing from prison expresses that the church, in Ephesians he says, “It is able to manifest Gods glory to the world, particularly brightly because of how we handle suffering and handle the troubles of the world.

Bridge: My foot is ever apt to slide, my foes rejoice to see they rise
                                       Their pleasure & their pride when they supplant my feet.                                                        But I’ll confess my guilt to Thee, and grieve for all my sin
I’ll mourn,                                  How weak my graces be and beg support divine from thee,                                                    My God, forgive my follies past, and be forever nigh;
                                                                 My salvation, haste, before Thy servant die.

(Chorus)

Sermon: But how? How can we be sure? How can we be sure that God is able to take oppression and suffering and turn into our good and His glory? Because we have the cross. Jesus Himself is the best example of this. He understood His calling. In the upper room, He says, “I will not speak with you much longer”, He’s saying, “I don’t have a lot of time”. “For the prince of the world,” we call him Satan, “is coming”. “Don’t worry he has no hold on me” He can’t handle me. “But the world must learn that I love the Father, and I do exactly what my Father has commanded me”. Perfect God who took on humanity so that He might show perfect obedience, take on our sin and punishment that we deserve, conquer the power of sin and death by rising again. And yet God used it for the greatest good possible. The redemption and justification of His people. You redemption, my redemption, which results in Gods greatest glory.

 

Wounded for Me (dust&grooves)

By Steven Shaw
My new album just dropped last week and this week I want to highlight a song a day. Each song has a lot of meaning lyrically and want to share each meaning with my friends. First song is “Wounded for Me”. I would suggest listening to song after you read lyrics and read explanations. This one is pretty simple and clear but still very powerful. Words are from an old hymn by W.G. Ovens.
(My explanations are written like this)
Wounded for Me
Wounded, wounded for me, there on the cross He was wounded for me,
gone my transgressions, now I’m free,
All because Jesus was wounded for me.
(God came as the man Jesus to live the perfect life that we could not live. Some loved him and others hated him. In the end, everyone was crying out “crucify him!” Now the Savior of the world was captured, flogged and humiliated. However, this is just the beginning of the end for Gods redemptive story)
Dyin, dyin for me, there on the cross He was dying for me;
Now in His death my redemption I see,
All because Jesus was dying for me
(Jesus died on the cross. And with Christ’s death, He has conquered death. Jesus died so that those who believe in Him would never die and live with Him eternally)
(Chorus)
How deep the Fathers love for us
How vast beyond all measure
That He would give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure
(The Trinity is simple and yet the biggest mystery in all of life. One God in three distinct persons or essence. This plan to send Himself in the form of Jesus was His plan since the beginning of time. He knew that His creation with the ability to make choices would sin. By nature we are sinners. And yet God still planned to love and those who believe)
Risen, risen for me, up from the grave He has risen for me;
Evermore from death’s sting I am free,
All because Jesus has risen for me.
(This is the point of life. If Jesus didn’t raise from the dead then Christianity is pointless. But He did raise and with it, put death in its grave. Now we have the promise that Christ will raise us up when we die. Now our death is really just the beginning of true life)
(Chorus)
Comin, comin for me, one day to earth, He is coming for me;
Then with what joy His dear face I shall see,
Oh, how I praise Him! He is coming for me.
(God isn’t just raising us from the dead. He is coming to take His children home! Finally get to see our precious Jesus face to face)
(Chorus)

What is Good Friday and Why is it Good?

By Steven Shaw

What is Good Friday and why do we start celebrating Easter two days early? For those who know what this holiday represents, it is very significant. Good Friday is the day that we use to remember Jesus work on the cross. Why He came and what that means for those who believe. Ironically, Good Friday is when Jesus was put to death. Why is it good? Because Jesus death signifies God’s children being welcome back to their Fathers presence. Before Christ, all who believed in God had many sacrifices, rituals, and offerings to make to atone for their sins. In other words to be made acceptable before God. God is perfect and demands perfection. Better understood is, God can’t be anything but perfect which means He is unable to accept or be around imperfection. Because we are full of sin from the start we are naturally unable to stand before a holy and perfect God.

But God being rich in love, sent Jesus, the second person of the Trinity to make a final sacrifice for sinners. That’s you and me. Jesus death was strong enough to cover every sin that has been or will be committed. This sacrifice means nothing to those who don’t ask for forgiveness and follow Jesus. But for those who are in God’s family, today means almost everything to us. Why almost? Because the only thing that makes Jesus “death day” good is that He rose three days later. That is what gives His death the power and meaning of being a God who defeated death and therefore has raised up His children with Him. See, the Bible says we are dead in our sin and deserving of God’s wrath, (Ephesians 2.) But now that Jesus came and died for His kids and will rise or has risen, means He conquered death for us. Our souls are no longer on the path of death but on the path of eternal life in Christ.

Good Friday is the beginning of the end and the new beginning for those who love and follow Christ. We begin our celebration today and say thank you, Jesus, we remember what You did for us and we will never live the same or be the same again.

If you have questions or want to talk more about what all this means please contact me because there’s nothing I love talking about more than Christ!

Closing.

And please don’t let my word be the final word on this. Pick up the bible, read Gospel-saturated books by good authors, read good commentaries on the Bible, pick up Wayne Grudem’s “Systematic Theology” and learn from a man’s lifetime of study and meditation on the Word of God. Most of all, trust in Jesus Christ and know what He has given us is whole, perfect and is for our good and His glory. Love you all!

The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.

Music www.TheShawsMusic.com

Podcast www.MisfitMinistry.com

Instagram @theshaws

 

The Idol of Comfort

By Steven Shaw

Let me start by saying I believe I am the most guilty of this sin. But as I pursue Christ and holiness I am increasingly more aware and ashamed of the sin and idol of comfort.

What do I mean by comfort? It is easy as an American and even more a Southern Californian, to enjoy and be lost in the comforts of life. It’s just too easy to have what you want when you want it. Don’t get me wrong, I count my blessings and thank God for America and it’s freedoms. I am so thankful that I was born here. But just like any good gifts of God, they need to be watched and put in their right place under God. I am afraid that the comforts of life are the most dangerous because they often go unnoticed.

If you look back at history and the people most faithful to God you will see a common theme, discomfort, persecution, and suffering. It almost looks like God is punishing them for being a believer. But as we look at the bible we can see a more powerful common theme. We are to rejoice in our sufferings (Romans 5:3-5). We are called to find joy and praise God in trials and tribulations (James 1:2, 1 Peter 1:6-9). How and why?! Because God is and should be enough for us in all of life. When we are satisfied in Christ alone then we can say with confidence and joy “You give and take away, blessed be Your name” (Job 1:21). This is a practice that requires a daily trend. It is one of the most difficult things to master, as our natural tendency is to find and stay comfortable.

Why seek discomfort? It’s not that we should seek out trails or discomfort, but we should be seeking Christ above all else. When we do that it is a daily dying to self and living to Christ above all else (Mark 8:34-35). As we walk with Christ closer each day, it will be walking away from the world more and more. That will cause a natural weeding of fleshly comforts and worldly securities. Remember, we are wrapped in the very weakness that enslaves us to our every desires and passion. It takes a moment by moment rededication to God to fight the quicksand of our sin. I know it sounds a bit heavy but that is what I am talking about with this discomfort topic. Even just the natural plot of seeking holiness will cause a normal amount of discomfort. If we seek a life of real walking with God, it means giving up everything from our ideals to our plans in life, which will lead in the greatest life of real discipleship in the world and true life change for the world around us (Matthew 16:24-26, Luke 18:22, Philippians 3:1-10, Matthew 4:19). Or you’ll just be satisfied with your church attendance and tithe amounts. Not that either of those things is to scoff at, in fact, they are both commands from God. But finding our satisfaction, comfort, and life in our actions towards God is something to look out for.

However, God is the God of all comfort. Read 2 Corinthians 1 and you’ll read a lot about what comfort means to us through Christ. The Holy Spirit is our comforter. The second Person of the Trinity. He dwells in every believer and allows us to rest and glory in Him.

So what?

How do we grow in our understanding of what all this means? I don’t claim to have all the answers. However, I do seek to know God and His desires for all of us more each day. So as I write this I am also being sanctified. I grow in my love and affections to God more and more. I am trying to be faithful to the platforms I have been given. If you are reading this then you are part of that platform and I thank God for you. I pray this blog will help you at least be more aware of your daily life. Let us not slip into our comfort zones every day. Let us seek God above all things regardless of our lot in life. Because, if we don’t see Christ as our greatest treasure then we need to grow in our understanding of the beauty of God.

Closing.

Please don’t let my word be the final word on this. Pick up the bible, read Gospel-saturated books by good authors, read good commentaries on the Bible, pick up Wayne Grudem’s “Systematic Theology” and learn from a man’s lifetime of study and meditation on the Word of God. Most of all, trust in Jesus Christ and know what He has given us is whole, perfect and is for our good and His glory. Love you all!

The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.

Music www.TheShawsMusic.com

Podcast www.MisfitMinistry.com

Instagram @theshaws