Saturday, September 9, 2017

Listen to Our Hearts -- Geoff Moore and Steven Curtis Chapman

These two best friends must have had plenty of opportunities to tell one another some details about how they each felt about his life before the Creator. So it wasn’t an accident that Geoff Moore and Steven Curtis Chapman would write some songs together to explore this facet of their lives, including in 1992 in Nashville when they collaborated to ask God to “Listen to Our Hearts”. It was one track on Geoff’s band’s (The Distance) album A Friend Like U, on which Geoff and Steven co-wrote two of its 10 tracks, including the album’s title tune. They were musical poets, able to inspire and motivate one another, yet also comfortable admitting that they lacked some of the words they would have liked to have said. In doing so, they must have taken some of their notes right out of another author’s text.

Geoff and Steven were early 30-somethings in 1992, who had connected while looking to make careers in the Christian music business in Nashville in the 1980s. What they wrote for “Listen…” suggests they may have been studying together at some point, or had both independently noted something that caught their attention.  Perhaps they were taking notes from what the apostle Paul had to say while preparing to meet some Romans (chapter 8), or about how this ancient writer had marveled about God’s deep well of love (Ephesians 3:17-18). That first-century Christian acknowledged that he came up empty when trying to vocalize his feelings (Rom. 8:26-27), using phraseology that Moore and Chapman echo in their poetry about their own conversations with the Lord twenty centuries later. Although the specific circumstances that motivated Geoff and Steven when they crafted “Listen to Our Hearts” have not been confirmed, their authenticity as songwriters and as men of faith, and their activity in other ways with their beliefs, indicate that they were hearing something pretty clearly, even as they asked God to inspect their insides and draw it out. Examine them and their family’s biographies, and you will find one way that the Chapmans and Moores extend their hearts is toward worldwide assistance for orphans and their  adoption via Show Hope, an organization that Steven and his wife founded. It’s not just talk either, for both the Moores and the Chapmans have adopted multiple children into their own families. Their hearts evidently have been speaking even when they haven’t been singing the words of the song they co-wrote in 1992.         

If you’re uncertain how to talk to the One above, Geoff and Steven might suggest you begin to investigate this by first asking Him to listen to your heart, and then admit to yourself what is there. Are you OK with Him listening and knowing what’s inside? You can’t hide it, only change it. It’s also been said that what’s in a person’s heart comes out in his actions (James 2:14-24). He once said something about being fruitful (Matthew 12:33), and one of his followers eventually listened and said something similar (Galatians 5:22). It’s interesting that that Galatians writer was once listening to another voice. I just have to get better at listening to Him, and tuning out the rest. Then, I might start to sound more like Him.

See the following two sites for biographic information on the two composers:

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