The Sound (Wake Up

One of the most visual verses in the Bible (as seen through my worshiping mind) is found in Zephaniah 3:17: "The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing."

Every time I read this passage, I have this image of the TV show Little House on the Prairie. As a child, I remember watching re-runs of this show. On one Christmas episode the family gathered around the table; Pa grabbed his fiddle and played a song. The family rejoiced and gave their entirety over to the joy of this music. The cold, the despair, the lack ... made way to joy through rejoicing and singing.

This is how I often see us in worship. Imagine us being fully surrendered to Christ in such a way that when we begin to worship; we actually witness his loud celebration over us. The bible even says the angels take notice at how God responds to His beloved (us) while he releases songs over us. I believe this is why we must be diligent in how we respond to Christ. His praise must be first on our lips. Not preference, not comfort, not even situations (how we feel) ... He deserves our praise and we were created for His song. His song is waiting to be released over us ... his song is freedom.

Not long ago, I was praying ... I was speaking out loud because I wanted my thoughts to be heard. I wanted my passion to be planted into the Earth. I began speaking: There is a sound being released that will bind our enemies; it will stop death in it's tracks and breathe strength into the weak. I knew in that moment, God and I were syncing in heart and spirit. So, I took and pen and began writing the words down. Out of that prayer came the song, The Sound (Wake Up).

The sound of freedom lies within each of us. All we need to do is release it! We live it! We chase it! We cherish it and never make cheap the gift God has given. Freedom is lifestyle worship! Freedom produces something different than the world; something visible (no chains); something fragrant (the anointing); something tangible (not who you used to be). These are things people witness and separate the children of God from the world. They will know us by our love ... God is love; his promise is freedom. Therefore he cannot lie --- freedom is ours through the power of His spirit.

So, wake up ... sing your song in the night
Sons and daughters ... speak what we cannot see
Mothers and Fathers ... dream your dreams
and church ... be free!

Be free in worship. Be strong in faith. Be courageous in love.

We open our hearts to The Sound!

Hallelujah (Winds and Waters)

Hallelujah (Winds and Waters)
words and music: Jeremi L. Richardson
CCLI #: 7081260

It's almost an eternal musical in our house and I've been amazed at how my children are always setting life to song. I was thinking about their singing one day and began thinking about worship. One of the ways we worship is by setting our love for God to song. We do this corporately and also as individuals.

There is also one thing you should know about my kids singing ... it is LOUD! They are full of passion, fervor, excitement, and volume as they proclaim their truths. Shouldn't our song be the same?

We are a people serving the only God that ever said: "I love you!" to His people. He says it, shows it (Jesus alone is the proof), and created this world we live in for us. He communes with us and so many times we sit silent in our adoration of Him. Imagine, if you will, a marriage where the couples never related ... each individual would be totally lost, lonely, and questioning the relationship. I think many times that is how we view God. We are frustrated with the outcomes of situations or lonely in our communion with Him --- but it is not His distance that is the problem. It is our silence that is building the chasm between us. We do not proclaim anything!

Revelation 19:6 says: "Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting: "Hallelujah! For our Lord God Almighty reigns."

I began thinking: Hallelujah! ... Shout it out

WHO should be saying this:
Winds --- praise God
Waters --- praise God
Nations --- praise God
People (ME) --- praise God
Lives --- praise God

How should we be doing this:
With singing
With shouting
With our lives
With every breath

WHERE should we be:

an infinite list ....
everlasting are His mercies
His promises stand like a rock
He is sovereign (GOD IS IN CONTROL)
He is King above all Kings
He loves with a mighty love

God, the Almighty Reigns and we say: HALLELUJAH! Let's not let silence win the war. Shout over your situations and proclaim that God is the victor over every situation! He is in control!


Stand Still (Mulberry Trees)

Stand Still (Mulberry Trees)
CCLI #: 7081257
words and music: Jeremi L. Richardson

Everyone of us have a moment of wanting to move forward and God has us stand still.

I remember several years ago; being in this season. One day, I was reading in 2 Samuel while researching some scripture about Angel Armies. "When you hear a sound like marching feet in the tops of the poplar trees, be on the alert! That will be the signal that the LORD is moving ahead of you to strike down the Philistine army." - 2 Samuel 5:24

I was taken aback. When you hear the sound (God's signal) move forward. I am giving you the land ... What? David, a man after the heart of God -  did not go into battle, without inquiring of the Lord. This seems like common sense to some, but something I had never thought about. This mighty-warrior that once had been victorious; might have said, as many of us have said, in fact — I shall be victorious again ... I shall triumph yet again. Instead, he waited until the sign came from God. He knew a move without God is destined to fail. He could not conquer the next position without the hand/call of God.

During the Easter season of 2016, my church was putting together a portion of the creative story where we would tell and it focused on 2 Samuel. As I studied this story again --- the words came alive. I began hearing the stanzas of this song and I wrote the recurring theme as quickly as I could. Stand Still! Stand Strong!

I believe that we all have a good bit to learn from David. We should take no steps without God. The last time you moved/ changed business/situation in life - you asked for God's help, and then did it. Luckily, you were blessed in the doing of it. However, like David, you never know without seeking God's advice what venture (or adventure --- depending on how you view life) you will regret. David knew this and paused. He stood still and let God dictate the next move.

When you listen to this song, remember:

This song is about the waiting ... do not move without God.
This song is about the journey ... do not feel ashamed as you wait.
This song is about the promise ... He is going ahead of you, making every crooked path straight.

We should stand strong during our holding patterns. There is no shame in waiting. There is no loss of dignity in pausing. When God signals our move --- His angel armies are fighting on our behalf. His word is breaking the backs of every enemy standing in your way. Your faith and trust releases these armies to fight. So stand still and let your faith move you into victory.

- Jeremi


Never Runs Dry

Never Runs Dry
words and music: Jeremi L. Richardson
CCLI #: 7081251

I've been so taken (not in a positive way) with many of my peers movement toward the practice of philosophy over theology. Many have submitted their lives to an ideology that we are all born good and not in need of a Savior.  In my heart of hearts I believe they are teaching under the disguise of Christianity with the absence of truth in the equation. There many other facets of this philosophy but I will negate them now for the purpose of this writing.

One day, after seeing a very public denial of truth by a dear friend; I was praying and asking God to grow my view of who He is and what He has done. I knew that this would only come through the Bible and prayer. So I began digging; digging deep into His words, His teaching --- evaluating my interactions with others. During this time, I came upon the term "ashes."

Ashes are often associated with death, destruction, and in the Bible, often used to signify worthlessness, insignificance or evanescence. I was struck, yes --- I remember the smell of death. I remember and have intimately seen the the utter darkness gripping someones life including my own. I began to see that you must remember where you've been to celebrate where you are. I believe that you cannot fully celebrate the grace of God if you do not remember the smell (the past) of a life without Him.

Lamentations 3 (MSG): I'll never forget the trouble, the utter lostness, the taste of ashes, the poison I've swallowed. I remember it all - oh, how well I remember - the feeling of hitting the bottom. But there's one other thing I remember, and remembering, I keep a grip on hope: God's loyal love couldn't have run out, his merciful love couldn't have dried up. They're created new every morning. How great your faithfulness!"

Later in my study, I came up the concept in the Bible where it talks about sins of the flesh and sins of the spirit. Paul pointed out in 2 Corinthians 7:1, "Because we have these promises, dear friends, let us cleanse ourselves from everything that can defile our body or spirit. And let us work toward complete holiness because we fear God."

A sin of the flesh (too many to list ...) is obvious. God help us all --- you know, we all have something we deal with! A sin of the spirit, however, is knowingly going against what is true. I thought to myself, God help us! This is what is going on all around me ... we are going against truth. Istood in my office and said; I must keep a tight grip on the one (Jesus) who saves. I began praying out loud: "I Am Satisfied!"

I am satisfied, not because I am listening to a teaching my grandparents taught or I am naive --- but because I am seeking the hand of the Savior that died for me. I am satisfied because I believe that His blood was shed for our victory not for a label of any kind. I am satisfied in His love that knows no limits and that love is the banner under which I choose to live.

I am not blind to the opinions (philosophies) of others I just choose (daily) to be wide eyed and aware that sin and spirit can not dwell in the same place. God is a God of love and His love can Never Run Dry!

I choose to keep a grip on the one who saves!

Piece By Piece (Restored)

Piece By Piece (Restored)
words and music: Jeremi L. Richardson
CCLI #: 7081254

Occasionally you write a song from personal experience and other times you write based on what you've witnessed someone else go through.

In the fall of 2016, I was part of the worship leaders for a Beth Moore (Living Proof Live) conference in California. At this conference, Beth did an impromptu question and answer session. During this time a sweet young lady came up and shared her story of redemption, restoration, and hope. Beth responded with the words: "... He (referencing Jesus) is putting you back together piece by piece." I flew home that very day and landed late in the evening. As I was driving home, I had to stop the car and write down the song, Piece By Piece.

My pen could barely keep up with the speed as God gave this song to me. The story is based on a testimony --- but honestly, it's all of our stories. In Deuteronomy 30 it says:

"God, your God, will restore everything you lost; he'll have compassion on you; he'll come back and pick up the pieces from all the places where you were scattered. No matter how far away you end up, God, your God, will get you out of there ... God, your God, will cut away the thick calluses on your heart and your children's hearts, freeing you to love God, your God, with your whole heart and soul and live, really live."

When we were recording this live version in Redding, CA ... my heart could barely contain the joy, anointing, and presence of God as we sang. We wrote a bridge on the spot and went into a time of free worship to God. This song was birthed out a testimony and has echoed freedom to many going through binding trials in their lives. My prayer is that as this song goes forth that the chains of darkness will melt away and songs of freedom will release over each listening ear.

God is a man of promise and He will replace shame with joy.

This song is near and dear to my heart and something I continue to release in my own life. God is freeing us to live ... not removing us from life. He sets us free and gives us power over our pain (through the name of Jesus) so that we can walk out of our pits into His marvelous light. My friends, breathe it in, for God is restoring us back to Him.

Thanks for reading!

Surely (I Am Changed Forever)

Surely (I Am Changed Forever)
words and music: Jeremi L. Richardson
©2016 AMYLLIAN MUSIC (CCLI #7081259)

Surely is a song about being awakened into who God is and based on the story of Jacob's ladder. If you are familiar with the text from Genesis 12, God reveals Himself to Jacob and reaffirms the covenant He made with Abraham, promising Jacob (whose name will later become Israel) that his offspring will be many and that the Promised Land will one day belong to his descendants. In this vision Jacob sees a ladder, which many believe (including me) signifies a connection between God and man. I see this (the ladder) as a place to connect Himself to man as opposed to the men of Babel who tried to reach heaven by their own actions, aside from the help of God. The entire story symbolizes God’s awesomeness, His control, and His faithfulness.

The song we are sharing is a dream sequence. The lyrics jump between what he (Jacob) sees and how it changes him. He hears the sound of angel wings and is awakened ... and is changed forever.

When I was writing the bridge to this song. I kept thinking about God connecting to man. How would we respond? What would that place be like?

"and I cry: Holy, Holy, Holy
be made Holy.
Awesome is the place
where Heaven and Earth meet ...

Yahweh, Yahweh
be made Holy
I am forever changed
when Heaven and Earth meet."

The awesomeness of who God is --- would be met with our morality and demand us to declare His sovereignty, goodness, holiness, etc. His name, this place (where Heaven and Earth meet) is place of reconciliation, promise, and beauty. A promise of a future, connection, and worship.

I hope this place comes alive in your spirit while you worship with us in this song. I am so thankful to have the opportunity to share it with you.

- Jeremi