New Music Tuesday – Jesus Wants My Heart

It’s New Music Tuesday and while I am tempted to post a review of Death Cab for Cutie’s new project, “Codes and Keys,” I simply haven’t been able to give it enough attention to do the project justice quite yet. So here is a little less ambitious, but in actuality, a more important new music review.

Daniel Renstom is the Director of College Ministries at Providence Baptist Church in Charlotte, North Carolina and a gifted songwriter and worship leader.  I have been a big fan of his since I first came across his song, “At the Cross” a few years ago. This song has become a favorite in faith community as it clearly articulates and declares Christ’s redemptive work on the cross on our behalf.  His first two projects: “Adore and Tremble” and “On the Incarnation” (make sure you listen to this before the next Advent season begins) feature strong theological content, rich Biblical imagery and are extremely accessible to most congregations – a rare and needed resource for the Church today.

Rentrom’s latest project,  “Jesus Wants My Heart” goes in a slightly different direction from his first two projects. He describes it on his blog as a children’s project.  I would prefer to call it a family project. Daniel and his wife are parents of three girls and he writes about the genesis of JWMH:

“Why not write a bunch of songs that will teach my girls good theology? I read a statistic today that said parents that try to pass along some sort of religious belief to their children have a 50/50 success rate.  Obviously that is taking lots of religions into account…some that I wouldn’t agree with, but the point is clear…Raising children is a fight.  It’s a fight to press values into them while the world, and our own struggle with sin, fights against us.  I’m praying that these songs (the 3 we’re releasing and the 6 in the hopper) will help you in that fight.  I’m praying MANY fruitful discussions will happens because of these songs.  I’m praying God will use these songs to help keep and protect kids. ”

“Jesus Wants My Heart EP” is now available on iTunes. I would describe the project as “Jason Mraz meets Shawn McDonald” and even thought the project is aimed at children, Renstrom is careful to ensure that he does not sacrifice theological richness for pop sensibilities. The three tracks, “Children of God,” “Rest Your Little Soul,” and “Love, Love, Love,” invite children of all ages to live deeply in the amazing love of the Father.

Question: What role does music have in shaping the faith of our children and youth?

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