Songs & Scripture: “Lay Me Down” (Chris Tomlin, Jason Ingram, Jonas Myrin, and Matt Redman)

I’m dedicating this Songs & Scripture post to a good long-time friend and North American missionary, Owen Grey, who works with Athletes in Action at Wilmington College in Wilmington, OH. He introduced this song to me just a few days ago (yeah, I guess I’m behind the times) and told me it’s one of his favorites because the song is basically about letting God take control and yielding to him.

This is something Owen would know about, because he didn’t originally plan to go into ministry full-time:

“During my 4 years at Eastern Michigan University the Lord used my time competing on the swim team to introduce me to the need my fellow athletes had for Jesus. In my senior year I had the opportunity to disciple two underclassmen on my team who were new to their relationship with Christ. Experiencing their passion, excitement, and desire for a changed life as a result gave me far more joy and sense of purpose than the engineering degree I was studying. Through these experiences I have felt God’s call into the vocation of full-time ministry, specifically with athletes.”

If you’d like to learn about supporting Owen’s ministry, you can click here or email him directly at owen.grey(at)

As usual for all my Songs & Scripture posts, I have links to related Bible verses after each lyric. (You can right click to select “open in new tab” if you don’t want to keep hitting “back” every time you look up a verse).

Lay Me Down
CCLI#: 6223577
Written by Chris Tomlin, Jason Ingram, Jonas Myrin, and Matt Redman

[Verse 1:]
With this heart open wide (Proverbs 15:11Acts 2:37-38, Acts 16:142 Corinthians 6:11-13)
From the depths from the heights (Psalm 95:4)
I will bring a sacrifice (Psalm 50:23, Psalm 51:17Romans 12:1Hebrews 13:15)
With these hands lifted high (Psalm 28:2, Psalm 63:4, Psalm 134:2Psalm 141:2, Lamentations 3:41, 1 Timothy 2:8)
Hear my song, hear my cry (Psalm 27:7, Psalm 61:1)
I will bring a sacrifice (Psalm 50:23Psalm 51:17Romans 12:1Hebrews 13:15)
I will bring a sacrifice (Psalm 50:23Psalm 51:17Romans 12:1Hebrews 13:15)

I lay me down I’m not my own (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
I belong to you alone (Romans 1:6, Romans 6:22Romans 7:4)
Lay me down, lay me down (John 15:12-14, 1 John 3:16)
Hand on my heart this much is true
There’s no life apart from you (Matthew 16:24-26, Mark 8:34-36, John 6:67-69, John 14:6, Romans 6:23Galatians 2:20, Ephesians 2:1-5, Colossians 2:13-14)
Lay me down, lay me down
Lay me down, lay me down

[Verse 2:]
Letting go of my pride (2 Chronicles 7:14Philippians 2:3, James 4:10, 1 Peter 5:6-7)
Giving up all my rights (1 Corinthians 9:18)
Take this life and let it shine (Matthew 5:15-16, 2 Corinthians 4:6, Philippians 2:14-15)
Take this life and let it shine

[Chorus repeats]

It will be my joy to say Your will Your way (Matthew 6:10, Matthew 26:42, Luke 22:42)
It will be my joy to say Your will Your way
It will be my joy to say Your will Your way always


Credit to this post for getting me started on the references:
Lay Me Down By Chris Tomlin” (

Related posts:
“Praying Lay Me Down by Chris Tomlin” (Six11.Wordpress.Com)
“Lay Me Down” (



Songs & Scripture: “Everlasting God (Strength will Rise)” (Brenton Brown, Ken Riley)

“It wasn’t like I got a word in the night and woke up and I heard God say, ‘Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord.’ It wasn’t one of those special moments. I mean I do remember people praying that over me. Of course, the danger with suffering from a chronic illness without being healed is you grow cold to some words. But I was pretty intentional about it. This is God’s promise to us. However it works out, however he chooses to bring His strength. He hasn’t chosen the way I would have chosen, so to sing those words, for me, it’s almost a redeeming action. This is where I am at, this is the truth of God, and this is His promise. He will look after my wife and me, and he will carry us through this time.”

~Brenton Brown, on writing “Everlasting God”, excerpt from this article on WorshipLeader.Com

Soaring Eagle
Soaring Eagle (Photo credit: w4nd3rl0st (InspiredinDesMoines))

Do you ever feel exhausted? Like, mind-numbing, fall-asleep-on-your-feet, not even have an emotional response for anything, exhausted? That pretty much sums up a lot of nursing school for me. The verses that I often went back to during that period of my life were Isaiah 40:28-31, which are the large basis for the song Everlasting God.

Whenever I can, I try to link to the story behind a worship song, and how worship pastor Brenton Brown initially started writing this song is an amazing testimony. Both he and his wife were diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), leaving them both physically and mentally drained. Maybe that’s you today. So read these lyrics encouraged, knowing that they’re not only heavily Scripturally based, but also written by someone who intimately knows what it’s like to be exhausted and has experienced God’s promise to carry you through it.

As usual, I’ve included the Scriptures that the original author of the song was thinking about, but have also included many cross-references to other Scriptures that relate to the lyrics as well.

For the full story behind Everlasting God, click here.

Everlasting God
Written by Brenton Brown and Ken Riley
CCLI#: 4556538

Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord (Psalm 31:24Isaiah 40:29-31, Isaiah 41:10)
Wait upon the Lord, we will wait upon the Lord (Psalm 27:14, Psalm 130:5-6, Proverbs 20:22Isaiah 8:17) (x2)

Our God, You reign forever (Exodus 15:18, Psalm 146:10, Lamentations 5:19, Revelation 11:15)
Our hope, our strong deliverer (Psalm 18:2, Psalm 56:13Psalm 144:2, Jeremiah 14:22, 2 Corinthians 1:10, 1 Timothy 4:10, Hebrews 10:23)

You are the everlasting God
The everlasting God
You do not faint
You won’t grow weary (Genesis 21:33, Psalm 121:4Isaiah 40:28)

You’re the defender of the weak (Psalm 12:5, Psalm 18:2-3, Psalm 59:9-10, Psalm 91:1-2)
You comfort those in need (Isaiah 40:1, Isaiah 51:12, Isaiah 66:132 Corinthians 1:3-4)
You lift us up on wings like eagles (Psalm 103:5Isaiah 40:31)

You are the everlasting God (Genesis 21:33Isaiah 40:28)
The everlasting God
The everlasting God
The everlasting (repeat x 2)

With love,


p.s. Officially in the 5 digits for hits on the blog! Wow. I remember posting about getting 500 hits just a little while ago, and before starting this blog a short 5 months ago I would never have expected it to grow so exponentially. Thanks to everyone for reading, hope the music and the Scriptures bless you richly!

Shareworthy: “Why Speaking Well of Your Spouse Is So Important”

So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. ~Philippians 2:1-4 (part of my wedding passage)

A friend forwarded this post entitled Why Speaking Well of Your Spouse is So Important and I’ll be honest, it convicted me and reminded me of something I had already figured was true: speaking well of your spouse in public is healthy and loving.

Photo credit: Uffe Nielsen
Photo credit: Uffe Nielsen

In general, I think compliments “in secret” (ie. not in direct hearing of the person they are about) are one of the most wonderful things to hear about later for that person. Think about how you’d feel if someone came up to you and said, “So and so was bragging about you earlier today.” Awesome. Right? It’s like winning the compliment lottery! And how do you feel about the person who complimented you? You feel like you can trust them. Because for some reason, saying positive things in secret is so much harder than saying negative things in secret (ie. gossip). So for my single readers out there, I’d say this article is still a great read, because it still applies to other relationships significantly.

Excerpt from full article:

Early in our marriage, Gail and I attended a church led by a dynamic, thirty-something pastor. He was an extraordinary communicator. He was a wise and empathetic counselor. As a result, the church grew rapidly.

But as we got better acquainted with him and his wife, we started noticing a disturbing trend in the way they related to one another. They would often make disparaging remarks about the other in public.

At first, it seemed cute. Their comments seemed playful and humorous. Everyone laughed. But over time, they became more and more pointed, thinly masking their frustration with one another…

Songs & Scripture: “Hosanna (Praise is Rising)” (Brenton Brown and Paul Baloche)

"They brought the donkey and the colt and put on them their cloaks, and he sat on them....And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, "Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!" ~Matthew 21:7, 9  (Photo credit: Andreas Krappweis)
“They brought the donkey and the colt and put on them their cloaks, and he sat on them….And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” ~Matthew 21:7, 9 (Photo credit: Andreas Krappweis)

I remember singing this song in youth group growing up, but have recently come back to it. ‘Cause when we see You, we find strength to face the day is still the cry of my heart.

After a time of singing my heart out to God, or glimpsing Him through nature, or reading a familiar Bible passage anew as if God wrote it exactly for me, or someone’s unexpected kindness, or a story of redemption, or another amazing piece of evidence of God’s existence or the validity of the Bible, that’s when I find strength to face another day.


Written by Brenton Brown and Paul Baloche
CCLI#: 4662491

Praise is rising, eyes are turning to You, we turn to You (2 Chronicles 20:12, Psalm 113:3Acts 14:15)
Hope is stirring, hearts are yearning for You, we long for You (Psalm 63:1, Psalm 84:2Isaiah 26:8-9James 4:8)
‘Cause when we see You, we find strength to face the day (Exodus 15:2Psalm 46:1, Psalm 73:26Psalm 138:3, Nehemiah 8:10b, Ephesians 3:16-19, 1 Timothy 1:12, 1 Peter 4:11)
In Your Presence all our fears are washed away, washed away (Exodus 14:13-14Psalm 46:1-3, 1 John 4:18)


Hosanna, hosanna (Matthew 21:9)
You are the God Who saves us, worthy of all our praises (2 Samuel 22:4/Psalm 18:3, John 3:16, Hebrews 7:25, 1 Timothy 1:15)
Hosanna, hosanna (Matthew 21:9)
Come have Your way among us (Exodus 33:13Psalm 86:11, Mark 14:35-36, James 4:7)
We welcome You here, Lord Jesus

Hear the sound of hearts returning to You, we turn to You (Deuteronomy 4:29-31Joel 2:12-13Acts 14:15)
In Your Kingdom broken lives are made new, You make us new (Isaiah 43:19, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Revelation 21:5)
‘Cause when we see You, we find strength to face the day (Exodus 15:2Psalm 46:1Psalm 73:26Psalm 138:3Nehemiah 8:10bEphesians 3:16-191 Timothy 1:121 Peter 4:11)
In Your Presence all our fears are washed away, washed away (Exodus 14:13-14Psalm 46:1-31 John 4:18)

Devo thoughts: Who are you boasting about?

“Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.” For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends.” – 2 Corinthians 10:17-18

This is not a full Songs & Scripture post (though I probably will eventually do one for this song!) , but I read this passage in my devotions this morning and immediately thought of this song. Have a blessed morning!

Songs & Scripture: “We Praise Your Name” (Trent Cory)


The Midtown Bridge Church about to start its Easter service in the park at Atlantic Station, Easter, 2013. Taken by me.

When I found my home church, the Midtown Bridge Church, I found a community that treasures its diversity and values that because it reflects the local neighborhood.  Should that be the entire foundation of a church? Absolutely not. A church needs to hold to biblical principles first and foremost, and not exist solely as diversity club.  But especially in geographical areas where racism sadly still rears its ugly head (like in Atlanta), I think it makes sense for a church to make that a (not the) pillar of its mission. And I would argue that fighting for that diversity is biblical especially in those areas. 

Which brings me to the song I selected for my Songs & Scripture post: We Praise Your Name.  Something my church (and small group) does to acknowledge and encourage its intercultural congregation is singing a large variety of worship song styles– from hymns to Hillsong to gospel.  I’ll admit, when I first went to this church, gospel style music made my ultra-white-Vermont-self uncomfortable.  I still love hymns, but gospel has grown on me and I feel blessed to have learned a new style of music to worship my God. My church sings this song often, and I love the fact that Trent Cory, who wrote & sings this song in the video below, is also part of a racially diverse church! Such a refreshing (and sadly not common enough!) blend of music styles in this song.  I hope you enjoy it!

We Praise Your Name
Words and Music by Trent Cory
CCLI#:  5305719

Holy, Holy, Father You are Holy, (Psalm 68:5John 17:11)
There is no one else like You, (2 Samuel 7:22, 1 Chronicles 17:20, Psalm 86:8Jeremiah 10:6)
Faithful, Faithful, Father You are Faithful, (Deuteronomy 7:91 Corinthians 1:9, 1 Corinthians 10:13, 1 Thessalonians 5:24, 2 Thessalonians 3:3, 2 Timothy 2:13, Hebrews 10:23)
We have put our trust in You, (Psalm 31:14Psalm 52:8Psalm 62:8, Proverbs 3:5)
Our God who reigns, (1 Chronicles 29:11-12, Psalm 22:28, Psalm 47:8, Isaiah 66:1, Revelation 5:13)
We praise Your name, (1 Chronicles 29:13Psalm 44:8)

Praise to the only living God, (2 Samuel 22:47Jeremiah 10:10, Revelation 1:17-18)
Praise to the Holy, Faithful one, (Psalm 71:22, Isaiah 49:7, Revelation 3:7)
Hallelujah, We praise Your name, (see above)
There is freedom to dance, in Your presence, (2 Samuel 6:14, Psalm 149:3, Psalm 150:4, Jeremiah 31:13)
Freedom to walk, in liberty (Luke 4:18-192 Corinthians 3:17, Galatians 5:1, 13, 1 Peter 2:16
Hallelujah, We praise Your name (see above)

Hallelujah (3x), We praise Your name

With love,


Stirring, we’ll lure you in and we’ll make room for the shade of skin
Short ones, tall ones, skinny ones, bigger, love is the gun and we pullin’ that trigger
So you send me and I’ll send you hope in the form of a new tattoo
Mine is the shiny city on a hill and yours, of course, is the colors that fill it

–Lyric Excerpt from “Diverse City”, by TobyMac

Songs & Scripture: “Break Every Chain” (Will Reagan)

Chain Link
Chain Link (Photo credit: small world)

“Break Every Chain” is a powerful, building song, especially for those who have ever struggled or currently struggle with an addiction. Kim Walker Smith does a really great rendition of this song, but I found Tasha Cobbs’ version even better. It’s a very simple song lyric-wise, since it mostly repeats on itself.

Break Every Chain
Written By Will Reagan
CCLI#: 5910977

There is power in the name of Jesus(3x) (Jeremiah 10:6, Luke 1:31-33John 14:12-14, John 16:23-24, Acts 3:16Acts 4:12Philippians 2:9-11, 1 John 4:4)
to break every chain, break every chain, break every chain. (2x) (John 8:31-36, Acts 12:6-7, Romans 6:22-23, Galatians 5:1)

Theres an army rising up.(3x) (Isaiah 54:17, Ephesians 6:10-18, 1 Corinthians 15:57, 2 Timothy 2:3-4James 4:12)
To break every chain, break every chain, break every chain.(2x) (Isaiah 58:6-8, Acts 3:6-7Acts 16:18)

I hear the chains falling.


With love,


P.S. For those of you who like memes, I thought this one was hilarious and quite timely for this song. Thanks Christian Memes for keeping us chuckling (And I’m sure Jesus is too).