Recently I learned that one of my favorite artists is releasing a new album. I first learned about Bryan Duncan when I moved to Omaha - oh, about 14-15 years ago. He was on KGBI which was the local Christian Colleges radio station. Bryan was invited down to do a concert and the price was cheap ($5 I think) which was perfect me.
So, anyway I get there and the school's choir started off the night and Wow! all I can say is they were horrible. Off key, didn't know their music and well, at the intermission I think about 2/3's of the auditorium left. I was sitting up in the balcony and actually got to move down to one of the front rows. What a blessing he was to me that night!
Bryan Duncan introduced me to what I call "Gospel-Jazz". I have no idea if that is a real term for music - but I've loved the rhythm, beat and variety of music he brings us ever since. He introduced me to Christian MUSIC that had movement and touched me inside.
So, where does Grace come in?
According to Wikipedia, "Grace" is the English translation of a Greek word meaning "that which brings delight, joy, happiness, or good fortune." As a Christian, I believe that Grace is a gift of "love and mercy given to me by God and He wants me to have it." Simply put, it is a Gift from God to Me.
I've been a Christian since I was a child when I accepted Jesus as my Savior. He saved me by dying on the cross and then was victorious against Satan and Sin and rose from the dead.
I have always struggled to listen to sermons. They just don't connect with me. Whereas music? I seem to connect with it spiritually and get more from listening or participating in it. Often I feel it reach in and grab me where I least expect it - or it works it way to something I'm mulling over or working through. And sometimes I find myself whistling or humming the tune throughout the day - and often I end up combining the tunes with 2-3 other songs I've heard that day. It stays with me ~ just like the word of God stays with me.
On the other hand, I struggle with Christian music. Why? Because it all sounds the same. For years I would get so bored listening to Christian music - it all sounded like it was all in the same key, with very little variety in the notes and yet lately I've been noticing that Christian music is changing.... there is rhythm, tone, movement, a strong message - and grace. Artists are stronger spiritually I think. Listening to the lyrics (whether it's gospel, country, rap) you can tell that the purpose in their ministry is to reach out and share a little nugget of Grace from God. Something they have gleaned from scripture and that the Holy Spirit has given them to share.
So, are you wondering where all this came from? I'm sitting here this evening listening to Bryan Duncan's newest CD... it's full of all that I mentioned above. There is rhythm, tone, movement and the lyrics are like a little Grace from God. Once again, Music has become a Gift to me - it's soothing, comforting, exciting, encouraging and fills me with the "delight, joy & happiness" that can only come from God.
You can listen to the complete album online FREE (for a limited time) - just click here. You can buy a special-edition version with more songs right now for a "donation" which will help Bryan with releasing his new album. It's a wonderful compilation of Gospel-Jazz and I'm sure you'll find it to be as relaxing and enjoyable as I have.
Disclaimer: This post is based on my own thoughts - I was not required to post a review, share information about the album and no money exchanged hands.