Amazing Grace: A Musical Review

51eagreeysl_aa240_.jpgWell, if you came here hoping to see me sporting dance shoes and singing show tunes, then you’re in for a disappointment.  If, in fact, you were hoping to hear my thoughts on my current favorite CD in the whole world, then you’ve come to the right place!

This CD,  Amazing Grace: Music Inspired by the Motion Picture, was an inspired gift from my wonderful hubby and has been in the CD player of my van for the better part of a year (I’m very loyal when it comes to music.  And jewelry.  And purses.  Jeans.  Lipstick… I guess I’m just very loyal).  I am honestly not tired of it yet.  I look forward to car trips that are just me in the girls so that I can sing at the top of my lungs listen to this CD in a comtemplative and worshipful frame of mind. As an unexpected and happy consequence, the girls now love it too, and can both sing the choruses of most of the hymns right along with me.

This CD is not a proper soundtrack.  It doesn’t have actual music  (score) from the movie.  Instead, it features modern recordings of great old hymns by contemporary artists.  What could be better?

So, in no particular order, my favorites from this album:

  • It Is Well, sung by Adie and Jeremy Camp – This one has the distinction of being the song that, when the intro music starts, Romilly immediately announces, “Mommy, this you song!”  This is my favorite hymn anyway, so I’m a  little biased, but this is a really great recording.

My sin, oh the bliss of this glorious thought,
My sin, not in part, but the whole,
Are nailed to the cross, and I bear them no more!
Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord, oh, my soul!

I just love the idea of talking to my own soul, and showing it who’s boss on days when it doesn’t feel inclined to remember what has been done for it.  Lovely!

  •  All Creatures Of Our God and King, sung by Bethany Dillon and Shawn McDonald – This one gets off to a slow start, but not in a bad way, just in a thoughtful sort of way.  Then there’s a fun little twist in the middle that I just love.
  • Holy, Holy, Holy, sung by Steven Curtis Chapman – Well, Steven and I go way back.  He was my jogging buddy in college (in my walkman, that is, can you imagine actually jogging with Steven Curtis???)  This is an absolutely beautiful arrangement of this hymn, which, again, is a favorite anyway.
  • Just As I Am, sung by Nichole Nordeman – Hmmm… is this really a hymn or is it a modern hymn that they’ve thrown into the mix hoping to fool me?  I’ve never heard it before, anyway.  No matter.  It is a beautiful song with lyrics that remind me of where I’d be without Christ every time I listen to them.
  • My Jesus, I Love Thee (Tis So Sweet), sung by Bart Millard – I guess, again, it’s the hymn itself that I love here.  This one just really speaks to me.

Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to take him at his word;
Just to rest upon his promise,
Just to know, “Thus saith the Lord.”

  • I Need Thee Every Hour, sung by Jars of Clay – This song is really the special one for us.  It’s Pippa’s song.  I really don’t even remember how it became Pippa’s song,  I guess she just told us one day that it was her favorite, and it stuck.  Now, when it comes on, literally as soon as the first few notes of the intro have been played, Ro announces, “That Pippa’s song!  Pippa, that you song!”  For a while, she’d even get upset if anyone else tried to sing along, but we’re all allowed to sing now.  I tried to get a video of them singing in the car, which is just the cutest, but it’s not the safest thing to do while driving, and the one day I had my mom with me to get it the camera was playing up.  So, here is a reenactment at our table.  I think the girls are a little mesmerized by the crazy patterns on the computer screen, as they’re a bit less enthusiastic than usual.

I guess what I’m trying to say is: go buy this CD!  I could say something about almost every song.  (Although, if I had to award one, the Not-So-Much Award would go to Natalie Grant’s Fairest Lord Jesus.  It’s just a little too… Evanescence-y.  Not that I mind Evanescence, but this has got to be the most cheerful hymn I know, and why add angst into a song that is totally angst-free?  Don’t get me wrong, though, I still belt it out.)  I really do feel that, provided the kiddies are relatively content in the back, I actually get to worship while I’m driving, and I get to where I’m going feeling more joyful and peaceful than when I left home.

By the way, if you ever happen to see me driving and belting out my Amazing Grace CD, please don’t tell me about it. It is really one of the greatest joys of my life to sing in the car, and if I had any idea how ridiculous I look to other drivers, well, it might just spoil it for me a little bit.

I’ll leave you with this verse from David Crowder’s recording of Rock of Ages:

Nothing in my hand I bring,
Simply to the cross I cling;
Naked, come to thee for dress;
Helpless, look to thee for grace;
Foul, I to the fountain fly;    

Wash me, Savior, or I die.