BEHIND THE SONG WITH KEVIN DAVIS
#990 - Skillet "Anchor"
NRT's Kevin Davis talks to Skillet's lead singer, John Cooper, about their latest single, "Anchor."
 


BEHIND THE SONG WITH KEVIN DAVIS, #990 - Skillet
Posted: September 25, 2019 | By: KevinDavis_NRT
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This long-awaited tenth studio album Victorious by Skillet has captivated my spirit. Over the years, it's been a treat for me to watch their meteoric ascent into one of rock's biggest bands in the world and the incredible success of their last four albums, Comatose, Awake, Rise, and Unleashed. Each album has reached another level of popularity. Over the past several years, I've had the opportunity to speak with Skillet's John Cooper about several songs from their prior albums, including "Awake and Alive," "One Day Too Late" and "Lucy," "American Noise," "Good to Be Alive," "Stars," "Lions," "The Resistance" and "Legendary" and with each discussion we've built on how John's biblical life verses Romans 8:38-39 have shaped his songwriting.
 
"Legendary" sets the tone for Victorious. We're all united in our struggles and spiritual warfare, and in our desire for truth and relationship. These songs are prayers for God to teach us to realize that this life isn't forever. Help us to realize what we're living for. What am I wasting my time on? What am I doing with my life? We also need to think about what we are doing for His Kingdom. That's our legacy, and the theme of this album. That's one of the threads that weaves its way through all twelve of these legacy-focused songs.

I had the chance to speak with John Cooper again about "Anchor."
 

Please tell me the personal story behind this song.

It's funny. When I first did my interviews about this song, I had a certain answer that I gave about how this song connects with me personally and that's often what's expected in Christian music. The emotional connection with this song is that I meet a lot of fans and parents who say, "This world is changing so quickly and is getting confusing and I don't know how to find God in my day to day life; I don't know how to trust God in my day to day life."
 
As the parent of two teenage kids, I know how crazy the world is getting and it is so easy to be thrown to and fro on all these waves of doubt and looking for hope and truth in the midst of that. In our world, everything is going to be changing except for Jesus. Jesus is faithful and Jesus is true, the Bible says. I hope this song is an encouragement to people who are looking for hope. Jesus said, "I am the way, I am the truth, I am the life," so He will anchor you in these times of doubt. He will never leave you or forsake you and He will always be faithful for you. He is our Anchor. All of that is true and I believe all of that. That is what the song is about.
 
Which Bible verses connect to the message of the song?

Hebrews 6:19 (NLT): "This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God's inner sanctuary."

Psalm 51:10-11 (NKJV): "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me away from Your presence, And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me."

Psalm 119:11 (NIV): "Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You."

Psalm 119:114 (NKJV): "You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in Your word."
 
Psalm 71:1-3 (NIV): "In You, O LORD, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame. Rescue me and deliver me in Your righteousness; turn Your ear to me and save me. Be my Rock of refuge, to which I can always go; give the command to save me, for You are my Rock and my Fortress."

Matthew 14:29-31 (NKJV): So He said, "Come." And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, "Lord, save me!" And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?"

Romans 12:2 (VOICE): "Do not allow this world to mold you in its own image. Instead, be transformed from the inside out by renewing your mind. As a result, you will be able to discern what God wills and whatever God finds good, pleasing, and complete."
 
What is the takeaway message?

The reason I wrote this song is specifically because one of the reasons we are thrown to and fro is that we are not anchored to the Word of God. It's not just that Jesus never leaves you or forsakes you, but also that the Word is a lamp to our feet and if you don't have that lamp you are tripping in the darkness. Now a lot of my friends who I've known for 30 years, and friends of mine with kids the age of my kids are getting divorced and saying 'I have my own story to tell,' and 'I have my own path,' and I'm not judging them and that's their decision between them and God, but we all need to be anchored by the Word of God.
 
I've been encouraging friends of mine who have 'peace time' where they go out and 'get one with nature' and I challenged them to call that 'God time.' A lot of people looking for answers in their lives are including one part Bible, one part what Kanye West tweets, one part Oprah and one part psychology, and get a dose of positivity and goodness. Then people wonder why their marriages are falling apart and their kids aren't following the Lord. I know I may sound a little edgy today, but the Word of God is the only thing that can withstand the waves and everything else will fall away. I desperately wish that everyone would know this to be true. Reading what John Cooper thinks about life is not anywhere near as important as reading what the Bible says about life. There's no easy way to get through all of this. You'll find yourself frustrated and with no peace if you don't anchor yourself to God's Word. That's where you'll find real joy.
 
Lyrics:
Drifting beneath the horizon
Body is weak but I'm trying
To make it to shore
But I'm falling short
I need You more
 
Wave after wave
I've been sinking
So unto Your promise I'm clinging
You say that I'm strong
To You I belong
Keep holding on
 
You are my anchor
So steady me, steady me now
You are my anchor
You're keeping my feet on the ground
In angry oceans You've never broken
Through every wave of the storm
You are my anchor
So steady me, steady me now
Come steady me, steady me now
 
When I get tired of fighting
All of the fears I've been hiding
You gave me a breath
And tell me to rest
You never left
 
I can, I can
I can hear You calling me by name
Pulling me up from under my shame
I'll never be the same
I can face anything, so let it rain
 
You are my anchor
So steady me, steady me now
You are my anchor
You're keeping my feet on the ground
In angry oceans You've never broken
Through every wave of the storm
You are my anchor
So steady me, steady me now
Come steady me, steady me now
 
Don't let go
I don't want to do this alone
Don't let go
I know that I'll drown on my own
 
You are my anchor
So steady me, steady me now
Don't want to do this alone
You are my anchor
You're keeping my feet on the ground
Don't want to drown
In angry oceans, You've never broken
Through every wave of the storm
You are my anchor
So steady me, steady me now
Come steady me, steady me now
 
Closing Thoughts
 
The song represents life and includes some great challenges to step out in faith and trust in God even when you want to give up or can't see where you're going. We aren't the source of the power to overcome our challenges. God is our greater power source that brings the true power. In our weakness, God's strength is perfect! This song represents the victory that we have over our battles before we even know the earthly outcome by trusting that God is going before us and He wins. If you think about the type of faith we are called to have as believers, it is described as the faith of a mustard seed.
 
This song is a faith statement. Righteousness was accredited to Abraham for his faith. We need to have the faith that the Bible describes in Hebrews 11:1 (NIV): "Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see." When you sing along with this great song, think of Jesus saying "Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?" Have faith, don't be afraid and know that with Jesus, you will never be alone.
 
Being a Christian means that we walk by faith, not by sight. Faith requires people to rely on the unseen. We all walk by faith every day. The beauty of walking by faith and not by sight is that we can learn to more fully trust God with our lives. I love singing this song back to Jesus and telling Him plainly that I need no other than Him. People can certainly relate to the "Anchor" imagery of this song. The lyrics in the chorus, "In angry oceans You've never broken, Through every wave of the storm, You are my anchor," have been resonating with me as I realize that Jesus commands us to trust God completely no matter the circumstances or personal distractions or concerns. The song represents life, and includes some great challenges to step out in faith and trust in God even when you want to give up or can't see where you're going.
 
God tells us in the Bible that with faith, we can do anything in Christ. I'm completely convicted by the strong lyrics and find immense comfort in this song filled with biblical truth. We can face our daily battles with more courage and strength because we know that whatever the outcome, based on His promise in Romans 8:28 "God works all things together for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose." This is a truth for believers to cling to. We're not supposed to just hope it is true, or turn to the Lord as only our last resort, but daily be washed by the Truth of the Word of God.
 
If we learn to build our lives on Scripture, we would all have a Rock as our foundation as we navigate our lives. You can sincerely pray these words along with Skillet. His love is never-ending, and He is our refuge and our strength. "Anchor" features introspective lyrics and a beautiful refrain with John displaying emotive vocals. It is yet another reflective track in the vein of "Stars" and includes another catchy musical vibe and the vertical message, "I'll never be the same, I can face anything, so let it rain, You are my anchor, So steady me, steady me now." Amen to that.

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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