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Endless Years – The Prayer of My Heart [CD Review]

Endless Years – The Prayer of My Heart [CD Review]

Contemporary Christian Music has come a long way in the past decade. Even still, there is a problem that many CCM writers create work only because they know will be replayed on Christian radio stations or that is easy to learn. After all, Christian or not, it is still a professional industry where music artist and their teams need to make a living. This financial side of the industry has restricted much of the creativity.

I spend a lot of time looking for some of the best Christian music because it is a form of art that speaks to my heart and leads it easily to prayer. I love to share the music I enjoy.

The Australian group, Will Reagan & United Pursuit released a new 15 song album, Endless Years, in December 2012. I discovered their music only a few months before this album was released. The United Pursuit collective brings together a very diverse and talented group of musicians.

EndlessYears-AlbumCoverThe Music

The music is beautifully written with great combinations of classical strings, hand drums, pianos, guitars, and other instruments. The musicality is perfectly blended to increase and decrease the energy of the song at the perfectly crafted moments.

The beautiful, melodic instrumentation is gracefully orchestrated and complementary to the lyrics. The musicians of United Pursuit take you on a journey that leads to prayer without distractions or begging for attention.

A nice surprise is that the album includes “Genesis” and “Preparation,” 2 audio treats of instrumental songs.

The Lyrics

These songs are so passionate and authentic that it often feels like overhearing a conversation in between Will Reagan and God. Even still, the honesty makes it easy to relate and use as your own prayer.

willraeganWill Reagan has made a name for himself with powerful songs such as “Break Every Chain,” “Fill Me up,” “If I Give It All,” and “Set a Fire,” that are used throughout the world. He keeps it simple and uses the element of repetition with skill. This makes it easy for anyone to pick and learn his music quickly and enter into prayer. This method is used in all great musical prayer such as chant, Taize, and others.

My favorite element of the lyrics is also their bold approach to prayer. These songs do not hold back. Whether it is in the reflection of the past relationship with God or the petitions for strength in spiritual battle. This is most evident in the battle cry of “Take Back” and in the Charismatic petitions of “Set a fire” and “Reach for Me.”

These songs are the prayer of my heart.

This is easily one of my favorite CCM albums released in the last year. If your spirituality is fed by prayer through music like this, I highly recommend it. If praise and worship isn’t your cup of tea, then I don’t expect you will find this album to be as great as I did. United Pursuit has different lead singers that each other their own perspective and sound, and I recommend you listen to their music too.

Get the Music

iTunes

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The Holy Spirit and Non-Catholic Christians

Note: This post was accidentally published before it was complete last week. I apologize if you saw that version.

Two weekends ago, my wife and I attended a Hillsong United concert, and I must admit that it was one of the most powerful spiritual experiences I have witnessed outside of Eucharistic adoration. This was the second time we attended one of their events, but this one was definitely more memorable than the first time.

While big name bands, like Chris Tomlin’s, are super well known and always associated with their music, Hillsong United gets far less recognition. Most Christian stations don’t even play much of their original music because many of their songs are too long for a usual radio edit. Also, if you are not familiar with their style, most people don’t like that the crowds do a large portion of the singing in the live albums. I was impressed that they were able to sell out so many large venues on this last tour through the US. It was even more impressive to see a crowd so on fire that they sang  with the band in a stronger power than their loud speakers.

I grew up in the Bible Belt, far outnumbered by very conservative Protestants. I am comfortable discussing religion with our protestant brothers and sisters, but I normally shy away form praising and praying with them. I have also attended many different types of Christan concerts in my life. Normally, a Christian concert does involve praying, but it is never really more than just simple and almost superficial prayer. They are still unaware of the true worship that we know well, the mass.

Hillsong takes these prayers to a deeper level than any other group I have every witnessed. This is really only possible through their genuine knowledge and relationship with the Holy Spirit. They very openly and boldly call upon Him similarly to the Charismatic prayers in the Catholic Church.

While they are very aware of their relationship with the Holy Spirit, their relationship with the second person of the Trinity, Jesus, is not as strong as they believe. Like all other protestants, their lack of understanding of Christ’s True Presence in the Eucharist. Still, no one can deny that their prayer was powerfully filled with the True presence of the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit.

There could be no denial of the Holy Spirit’s presence at that event. Some may look at it an think it’s fake or all for show, but their prayer was absolutely genuine. While the fallen away Christian groups do not know the fullness of Truth, it’s group like these that make me understand what Vatican II wrote about. For a long time, they were simply seen as heretics, but after the council the Church acknowledged that protestants do have a partial understanding of Truth. I wonder how much the Church could do in this world if only their passion was in union with the True Church. I sincerely wish that more of  the Church would catch on to this passion. I pray that someday, we will all be one Church again.

 

 

Hillsong – With Everything from With Everything on Vimeo.
This is a video someone else took at the concert we were at this month.

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