I was recently asked to explain how my song “BREATHE”…
… was born.
Allow me to attempt telling this song’s story chronologically:
I think constantly about the delivery of worship songs in church… I frequently feel that we don’t ever let God respond… I’m bothered by lack of instrumental sections in songs… I think as worshipers we just run our mouths non-stop and then rush off to lunch. In my opinion, letting the song breath with sections of no lyrics is a direction I want to go… I’m not saying I am RIGHT I am just saying I spend a lot of time contemplating that!
Earlier last week I got enamored with a video where someone played Jolene by Dolly Parton on a 45 at 33rpms
Since the 90s I have been enamored with the chord progression to “just between you and Me’ by April Wine.
In my private life, I have been experiencing some “begging God for mercy and favor” in an area where I frequently want to be blessed 😉 In my impatience, and dare I call it “suffering”, I had been praying indignantly to God and abusing scripture to “call God out” for it…
Proverbs 13:12 says Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
(notice there is a comma, for years I have only quoted up to the comma ;))
October 5th, 2018 I was doing some remodeling in our basement one morning and listening to Rick Pino on Spotify. This track came up on random: https://youtu.be/n17JeW_OOmg
Rick Pino (Coach) gets to a spot where he describes a similar vantage point using the same scripture and while complaining to God, the Holy Spirit instructs Rick to read the second half of the verse “but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life”
I reflected on how often and how well God DOES blessed me with the very subject that I was taking grievances against God to God for… and I broke! Tears ran down my face listening to Rick’s story! I ran my own application and how God used Rick’s testimony to inspire me to start trying to put mine into words through my head all day…
Same day at 4:00 PM I had a guitar student no call, no show…
I started fidgeting thought the progression from memory, the chord progression to the aforementioned “April Wine” song.
I knew it wasn’t correct:
an April Wine fan would have ridiculed me in disgust for the lack of accuracy.
Knowing the chords weren’t correct enough to be required to call them stolen I deliberately started singing my thoughts from my experience listening to Rick that morning.
Proverbs 13:12 says Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life. NIV
I didn’t feel like I could use the word “longing” in a song effectively, so I used google to look at several bible versions.
Proverbs 13:12 says Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life. ESV
The first lyric came out: Breathe breathe breathe I breathe you in because desire fulfilled is a tree of life.
I was like woah! I actually LIKE this… I usually hate my lyrics and melodies.
I decided, ok this song will be 2/3 instrumental when its finished but not with a “solo” I’m just going to let the music breathe.
I like worship songs that can literally TEACH the congregation the words the first time they hear it, so they will be worshiping instead of being glued to the projector on the wall faking the funk and making excuses about how the song or the equipment are keeping them from worshiping. BUT, I thought I better fill in more variety than just singing this one line 32 times… a small handful of worshippers in my fellow congregation tell me they like making up their own lyrics during instrumental sections so I REALLY wanted to cater to that.
I added a jazz ending (3-time tag) so I could easily signal a maladroit musician or singer to end the song when performed live.
By 4:30 I had a printable lyric sheet with Chords ready for my worship team. By 4:35 I realized; “oh my goodness I just reworded Dolly Parton’s Jolene”. I chuckled and thought “no one will be able to tell unless I disclose it”. By 4:40 I was like: “did I just mash Jolene, and Just between you and me into one little worship idea?”
Eventually, I made a truncated video version of the song and now here we are 🙂