Momentum Music is the music ministry from Momentum Church based in Gulf Breeze, Florida, which states as its belief "We believe hope has a name, and His name is Jesus." Appropriately, the band's debut album is called Hope Has a Name, a project which has a very contemporary sound and upbeat music along with enthusiastic and biblically-based lyrics focused on celebrating our Savior.
From the band's website: "Since the beginning, the heart of Momentum Music has always been to write songs that serve as spiritual markers in the journey of our church and God's work in His people. We believe worship is much more than just the music we sing on Sundays--it's a lifestyle that is lived throughout the inner-workings of your week from Monday to Saturday as well. We couldn't be more passionate about living a life of worship for the Master Artist. We get to honor and serve God every day through our talents and gifts He has given us. We are His creation singing back to Him. There is power when the Church gathers together to worship the name of Jesus." I had the chance to speak with Matt Arnold about "Here and Now."
Please tell me the personal story behind this song.
"Here and Now" was written with the vision of giving people the opportunity to sing in the light, hope and joy that God brings us daily. The whole process started because we wanted these songs to be spiritual markers for our church. We didn't have plans to get them on radio or anything like that. We want the songs to tell the story of what God is doing at Momentum Church and the lyrics reflect that. They are biblical, and this song comes from Psalm 118:24. That's the reason we sing about how the joy that the freedom from God brings, we will sing about here and now.
With every new day God has extended His joy to us, a new dawn and fresh chance to rejoice and be glad. So often people think that joy is found in the future, but He has offered His joy for right here and now. We thought that was a neat way to say it in the song. We wanted the song to be upbeat enough that people could dance along with it and move. We have a lively church, and we wrote the song to give people the ability to sing in that light and that hope, in the joy that God brings us daily.
Which Bible verses connect to the message of the song?
Psalm 118:24(NKJV): "This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it."
Matthew 5:14-16(VOICE): "And you, beloved, are the light of the world. A city built on a hilltop cannot be hidden. Similarly it would be silly to light a lamp and then hide it under a bowl. When someone lights a lamp, she puts it on a table or a desk or a chair, and the light illumines the entire house. You are like that illuminating light. Let your light shine everywhere you go, that you may illumine creation, so men and women everywhere may see your good actions, may see creation at its fullest, may see your devotion to Me, and may turn and praise your Father in heaven because of it."
Ephesians 1:18-19(VOICE): "Open the eyes of their hearts, and let the light of Your truth flood in. Shine Your light on the hope You are calling them to embrace. Reveal to them the glorious riches You are preparing as their inheritance. Let them see the full extent of Your power that is at work in those of us who believe, and may it be done according to Your might and power."
John 1:4-5(NKJV): "In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
What is the takeaway message?
We have wanted to write music that would serve as milestones, and our church is five years old. We've written five songs to celebrate our first five years as a church. This is the first song on the album because it opens up with an energy and fresh upbeat feel, and it uplifts your spirit and excites you about what God is doing each and every day.
We want to share the reason for our hope and joy. When we experience His joy, we can't help but sing it out. This song was written in a season when we created a simplified mission statement for our church: leading people to passionately follow Jesus. When you're passionate, you are driven by a deep sense of vision and direction because God has stirred your heart. We pray that this song stirs your excitement and passion as you join us in declaring His light, hope and joy here and now.
Lyrics: The light of God shines down on us, here and now
There is a spark that ignites the dust, here and now
An overflowing stream of grace, awaken now
Rise to your feet and take your place, awaken now
The light for the world to see
The hope of eternity
The joy that Your freedom brings
Here and now
Can you feel His love in here, it's all around
It's stirring in the atmosphere, it's all around
He has filled our hearts with joy, hear the sound
We are singing with one voice, hear the sound
Many artists in the mainstream have had massive success with songs featuring the electronic dance music (EDM) style these past few years, reminding me of the synth-pop songs I grew up listening to in the 1980s. The good news is that there are now several artists of faith in the Christian music world also recognizing that "there is a time for everything, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance." (Ecclesiastes 3:4). Part of applying this means employing the EDM style to present Gospel-grounded messages.
We are challenged in God's Word in Matthew 5:14-16 as believers to not hide the light of Jesus that is in us as His redeemed sons and daughters. The children's song "This little light of mine" gives the word picture to not hide our light "under a bushel." It is true that we should be in the world but not of the world, and that we should "not conform to the patterns of this world" (Romans 12:2). However, you can't reconcile that to mean avoiding people altogether. Jesus also commands us to "preach the Gospel to every living creature" in the Great Commission.
Matthew 5:14:16 (MSG) tells us "You're here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept." Sometimes Christians know facts about the Bible but don't live out the Truth that the Holy Spirit is living inside of us. People like good art, and they're going to seek it out even when they are lost. When they encounter the truth of these lyrics, my prayer is that they'll think about their own stories. As this song challenges, "The light for the world to see, the hope of eternity, the joy that Your freedom brings, here and now." Amen to that!
Listen to the song below.
NRT Lead Contributor Kevin Davis is a longtime fan of Christian music, an avid music collector and credits the message of Christian music for leading him to Christ. He lives in Pennsylvania with his wife and three daughters.
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