Somehow it’s the above Brene Brown quote that echoes through my heart and head when I listen to the latest album release, People, from Hillsong United.
As you find me, has all the markings of an anthem – much like Oceans was before it, reaching a generation feeling left alone to struggle their way through the darkness and giving them wind enough to become brave again and to see the infinite power of the Light …
The latest collection bares scars of lives’ lived out … with nothing left to give … and hearts left wondering was the cost worth it all?
These songs rummage our very depths and pull out of us the powerlessness and the ache of a hearts-cry left unanswered, bringing us to the edge of brave new places in worship and brave new places of vulnerability … with people who themselves have been brave enough to explore the shadows, finding their way, even when they felt unsure where He is amongst it all.
The book of Job has long been a favorite of mine.
It’s not the suffering or mistreatment that Job went through that endears me. It’s not the misfortune and immense grief he had to suffer that draws me or the way his friends and closest loves treat him that sometimes nods to a place of familiarity …
The thing about the book of Job that I’m both baffled and beautifully inspired by is his ability to hold true, no matter the cost.
Through the darkest of days, the most horrific of trials and the deepest chasms of grief a single life could hold … he remains ...
Sure and assured
Still, no matter the circumstance his conviction remains and his confession too … that his God is good.
Job, he was the richest man around, a man known for his great faith ... as a young Christian what God allowed to happen to Job, baffled me ...God allowed Satan to test Job.
Satan replied to the Lord, “Yes, but Job has good reason to fear God. You have always put a wall of protection around him and his home and his property. You have made him prosper in everything he does. Look how rich he is! But reach out and take away everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face!"
"All right, you may test him,” the Lord said to Satan. “Do whatever you want with everything he possesses, but don’t harm him physically.” So Satan left the Lord’s presence.
What strikes me most is that Satan is so sure if he took away everything that Job possessed and had been blessed with, then Job would curse God. What happened though, was remarkable. Instead, despite the heartache and trials, Job found more of God's goodness and faithfulness.
Have you ever asked yourself how you’d have fared had that been you?
I have, often.
When times are good it’s easy to find yourself coasting along believing and trusting in the things of God … but what if you lost everything you possess, everything you hold dear?
It was this verse that I thought of the clip I had just I watched as Joel Houston describes the way As you find me, came to be.
From the outside looking in, his is a life surely blessed.
A life seemingly Teflon coated in blessing …
That is until you dig a little deeper and listen a little closer.
Some of our richest worship songs this generation has ever sung, have come from his pen, but not had to share in his process or presume his pain.
Reconciling your shadow is what his Pastor called this past season he’s been through … reconciling our humanity against the infinite divinity we claim to know and love so deeply.
Hearing the season this song was penned from reminded me that there are beautiful lessons that can only come from our lowest. Treasures you only see once you’ve walked through the darkest of days.
It should come as no surprise that the most beautiful of songs in this generation have come from some of the hardest of places for Joel and the rest of the Hillsong United band and team. And yet we sing the lyrics unaware at times of the lives spent in their pursuit, the hours hugging airport lounges instead of home with families and the days spent driving city after to city to share a glimpse of the glory they pray they point to and the wonder of His grace they’ve encountered on the way.
It comes as no surprise that there has been a season of reprieve, a season of transition and shaking and making space again, to wonder.
Job knew it.
He felt its isolation and haughtiness.
He had seen its evil desire to devour him from those he loved most and those he trusted his deepest wounds too … yet they turned on him in the midst and jeered from the sidelines for him to tap out, to turn away and slight the God he knew was real.
I often wonder if we’ve at times become those ‘friends’ on the sidelines when one of our own is walking the valley of the shadow? Whispering behind backs and silently solaced by the humanity we see in ‘one as blessed as him’ …
I have learned a lot from Job.
And Joel Houston.
And Hillsong United.
These Kings’ kids that lay themselves bare night after night, in the hopes you would encounter the God they have seen face to face.
Owning our story is the most vulnerable powerful thing we can do.
The latest United album is a reflection of what vulnerable looks like and powerful sounds like.
It’s raw and real and honest and true and points to a Heavenly Father who wouldn’t take us any other way and whose love is too good to leave us here.
What's our favorite track? Take a sneak peek!
You'll want this one on repeat, trust us!