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Songs That Ignite Change

posted: August 9th, 2012 by Dave Trout

If you're like us, you love songs full of passion, truth and conviction. But does this ever ignite a change in our daily lives? UTR recently polled our listeners to ask them if a specific song has ever caused them to take action. We have received hundres of responses, and here are some of the stories.

Steven Curtis Chapman - "What Now?"

This song helped build me into living a life of missions. I've been on 10+ in-state/local trips, 5 national, and this August and October I'm going on my first two international missions to Bogot and Barranquilla, Colombia. The most important thing I've learned is to TRULY live out The Great Commission; to take the power of The Gospel and spread it among all the nations. And when God says "all the nations," He may be telling you and me to look on our own street. - Colter J., Texas

Andrew Peterson - "Planting Trees"

I was only recently introduced to the writing of Andrew Peterson, and when listening to "Planting Trees" on his album, Counting Stars, was reminded how important it is to stop and invest in your family's future.  I work a job keeps me at work five days a week from 7:30 - 5:30, so my time at home with them is usually fleeting moments after they've woken up, and fleeting moments between dinner and bedtime.  This song was the extra push that helped me set aside the selfish desire to come home and "rest" on a Lazy-boy, read a book, or pursue something of my own interest, and instead to finish dinner with the kids and head outside with them, read them their favorite book (of the day), or walk with them to the park.  So appreciative of Christian writers who take the time to write from their own personal experience, provide a Godly perspective, and spur the body of Christ on in good works.  God bless you and your staff for the time you take in sending these artists our way.  My kiddos and wife thank you for their newly engaged husband/father. - Michael S., Pennsylvania

Ten Shekel Shirt - "Daylight"

"I won't turn a blind eye while slaves make our shoes and our wedding bands too..." Both Freedom albums helped, but this song in particular prompted me to change my buying habits & DO more instead of just studying/learning more - to BE the hands and feet and stop just complaining about all the wrong out there. - Sierra P., Missouri

Jason Gray - "Nothing is Wasted"

I heard it at a time when I didn't "need" it - I wasn't in the midst of trouble or pain. But the words resonated so greatly with past moments that I committed then and there to live in that mentality always - just over a month later a friend's accident began a 4 month period of intense loss and pain, and the Lord had given me the grace before it even began to remember that in the hands of my Redeemer, nothing is wasted. - Carrie G., Pennsylvania

Derek Webb - "The Church"

This song challenged my lack of love for the local church, and I changed my schedule around so I could serve. - John G., Georgia


David Wilcox - "Hold It Up to the Light"

I was caught in a dubious relationship, hurtling toward our wedding, and facing a terribly unhealthy future, and I found the strength to walk away because of this song. To see what God had for me. I found true healing and redemption and ran hard toward a meaningful future. Three years later, I married my best friend. We became missionaries and parents--two of the greatest ministries ever.   I. Am. Blessed. - Bethany K., Maryland

Jars of Clay - "Worlds Apart"

It was the best song on the first "Christian" album I owned. It changed my view of the church and inspired me to give my time & talents to Christ through service in worship ministry. Twelve years later, I'm still serving and worshipping and my children are inspired to do the same. - Terry A., Nebraska

Josh Garrels - "Ulysses"

The song provides the most amazing imagery where I visualize a ship emerging from the misty waters coming onto dry land and serves as a metaphor for many of my days. The line that says "Trouble has beset my ways, and wicked winds have blown. Sirens call my name, they say they'll ease my pain, then break me on the stones. But true love is the burden that will carry me back home. Carry me with the, memories of the, beauty I have known" reminds me of the moments in my life where my life was misguided and lost.  The music, lyrics, and sounds in this song really encapsulate the journey of pain and loss, to the bittersweet brokenness that one finds in the shattered pieces of our life. The promise of "sailing home and pressing on" is incredibly powerful and promising. This song has romantic connotations as well as references to the greatest divine romance which put the idea of romance, safety, and home together beautifully. There is a peace that follows through this melody which is very soothing.   This song made me realize what I define as home, who that person was, and how pivotal they were in my life. I was in a huge argument with the man I intend to marry and when I quieted my heart and listened to this song, I realized that he was my future home and that by the light of the moon I would press on, before my chance was gone. - Lisa M., Texas

Sara Groves - "Twice As Good"

Not just once, but every time I listen it inspires me to reach out to be in community--to give of myself and to receive.  As a natural introvert, it is always easier to be alone, but life is richer, fuller, and closer to what God's Kingdom looks like when we live it together. - Chaeli C., Mississippi

Third Day - "Show Me Your Glory"

One song that truly helped keep me going during my son's premature birth was "Show Me Your Glory" by Third Day. It was my prayer 13 years ago when I could not find words to express my pain and fear; and it continues to be my prayer as I watch my miracle boy grow into a wonderful young man! - Aileen B., Michigan


Thanks to everyone that contributed! The ball is already rolling, so if you have hesistated in the past to leave comments below, now is a great time to share YOUR story of how a song ignited change in your life.

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