Grace Coleman

Enough to Believe

It’s been three weeks since I picked up the CDs. In some ways life has gone back to normal and in other ways life will never be the same. Yes, day to day has its routine, which I am thankful for a tinge of normalcy, and all at the same time, now these songs are listenable, and there’s no going back (even though the songs are no longer on Spotify... sorry about that).  Someone at church said to me last Sunday “I leave your CD in the car and listen to you everywhere I go” and while I’m flattered by the compliment, it dawned on me, I’m communicating with people whether I realize it or not. There’s an ongoing accountability now. An ongoing message... and now that it’s out, I need to keep living it. Need to keep singing it to myself.  

As promised, I’m gonna start writing the backstories behind the songs on Point of View. Not to make much of the songs, but hopefully to point to the Giver of each one, and share what He was teaching me during the writing process. 

I’ve decided to go out of order (to leave some unpredictability in there) and start with Enough to Believe. 

From the technical side, one of the handful of ways I approach songwriting is occasionally I’ll sit at the piano and “doodle.”  80% of the time I’ll either end up playing a different song or giving up, but every now and then something worth coming back to will emerge from the keys. I don’t remember what I was aiming for at the time, but I hit just your average G major chord and began moving up the scale with 3rds, and before I knew it, I had a chord progression going with a swing 3/4 feel. I hummed a melody while I played, sang it into my phone, and threw in some improv words that half made sense. I didn’t have a direction I wanted to take the song, but I had “if the cross means surrender, then I wanna die... and something about the rocks not staying silent and I won’t either.” Once that was rearranged into a rhyming order, the song sat for a while. I’d jam out to it... more like, I’d work out to it, pounding the keys just about as hard as I could and would sing nonsense words to get through it, but nothing consistent was coming, and so it was for months. 

My Dad is on the State Board of Missions for South Florida and when they had their quarterly meeting at Lake Yale, I went along in hopes of having some down time to clear my head and write. I pull inspiration from a number of venues, but I’m a big believer in occasionally changing up the scenery to open up new senses and constantly be in a state of wonder, and Lake Yale is the perfect place to find some peace and quiet and marvel at the Lord’s handiwork. Plus they have a piano and a coffee shop...

I grabbed my notebook and sat at a table by the lake. A cross stood between me and the water... a perfect view. 

 

By this point, I knew I wanted the song to communicate the evidence of Truth, not only in a visible sense, but what God has revealed through His Word. Dad preached a sermon a while back about seeing things with the eyes of our hearts. This opens up the realm of believing strictly through faith... 

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in His holy people... -Ephesians 1:18

I believe in God not because I can see Him, because I can’t. His spirit placed a seed in my heart of belief, and through the watering process of prayer and reading His Word and the pruning process of a burning conscience, my faith and conviction have grown. His Word gives life and His spirit communicates in a way that “rings true” in our hearts and minds. 

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. - Hebrews 11:1

And that would be enough... the Word can speak for itself. However, God didn’t stop there. I started thinking through different points in history where God made His existence/presence unmistakably known. You have Moses and the Israelites being lead by a pillar of cloud by day and fire by night. Countless visions throughout the Old and New Testament. And continuing today, the written Word is still speaking and that still small voice is constantly guiding. Even looking at creation points to something greater, a living Creator.  

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—His eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. - Romans 1:20

It’s enough. 

However, for the times that I have thoughts of doubt or entertain the idea of it all being a made up story, recounting those times in History and in my own life... I’m instantly brought back to what I know is true. God has never not shown up or left me stranded, and I don’t think it’s wrong to continually ask Him to reveal Himself more and more... in fact, I think it’s only right. 

With all of that flowing through my thoughts, the song was finished by that afternoon. Every time a song is completed, even though a lot of time and concentration (and waiting in this case) went in to writing it, I’m astounded and wonder how it all ended up coming together, and I really believe that each song is a gift from God, in this case, to serve as a declaration to come back to in times of doubt or in times of absolute confidence, to recount the goodness and constant presence of God, and to acknowledge to Him through worship that what He’s done is enough to believe in Him.

http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/gracecoleman3/EnoughtoBelieve

Comments

First off, "Enough to Believe" is one of my favorite songs from your new album. We've always kind of liked the name "The Stono Rox" at Stono Baptist Church for our youth ministry. We always referred to that verse "the stones cry out" and when I heard your lyrics I was beyond amazed, especially since I was headed to youth at the time. That has to be one of my favorite lyrics from your new album. "If the cross means surrender, then I wanna die. If the rocks won't stay silent, then neither will I." (I apologize if I mix around the words, going off memory.) I love the sound of the song too. I've always loved the blues and just that warm guitar feeling, so from the get-go I fell in love with "Enough to Believe". It really speaks to me too. I remember when I was little, I used to love that old Tim Allen movie, "The Santa Clause". One of the big quotes from the movie is, "Seeing isn't believing". And I took that into account when I started to really accept God into my heart. I knew I couldn't see him, but I could feel his presence and even when I couldn't I believed he was there, and he was. It really is an encouraging song, keeps reminding me that even through rough times and where we feel like we are Alone, we are never alone. Totally love the song and I'm going to have to find that place where that cross is. Looks like the perfect place for some quiet time with our savior you know. Keep writing and letting God speak through you and your music. You're having an impact on people whether you know it or not. I know I can see His glory in you and know he's still has plenty of work for you to come. - "Clear Eyes. Full Hearts. Can't Lose."
Grace, what a beautiful commentary on the song! I have really appreciated the songs God has given you to write and I love getting the "behind the scenes" view! Love ya!

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