#274 - "Live For Love" by We Are Leo
David Duffield shares his inspiration behind this upbeat. happy first single from the Hello album.

So often, even as Christians, we think it’s OK to avoid conflict and passively avoid relationships. We think that despite doing so, we’re still able to follow God’s commands. We are, however, called to actively love one another. There is a lot of great biblical truth throughout this catchy song “Live For Love” by up-and-comers We Are Leo. I’ve been consistently challenged by songs that include messages about living out the “the Golden Rule,” found throughout the Bible:
  • Leviticus 19:18: “You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the children of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the LORD.”
  • Matthew 7:12: “Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.”
  • Luke 6:31: “And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.”
We Are Leo is a Chicago-area based pop/rock quartet who in just three years have already developed a distinct brand of energetic and message-based music and a seasoned live show. The band has also already earned a legion of loyal and grassroots fans by winning several “Battle of the Bands” contests.

The've also shared the stage with the likes of Skillet, Family Force 5 and House of Heroes, to name just a few. The band is comprised of front man and keyboardist David Duffield, his younger brother/drummer Jonny, guitarist Doug Weier and bassist Andrew Alojipan. The brothers, originally starting the band to express songs they were writing from experiences gained while traveling around the world, developed We Are Leo into a full-force rock band with a mission. They agree in saying, "When we are on the road, we sense that we aren't merely touring America, we are fighting for love, for hope and for new beginnings."

Sharing the story behind their unique moniker, David shares, “Our band name is about our desire to be bold and courageous like a lion (“leo” being the Greek word for “lion”), and also that we might shine like stars in the darkness, like the constellation Leo does.” With Hello, We Are Leo brings that fight to the front lines with a varied and rich collection of culturally relevant pop and rock songs. I had the opportunity to interview David Duffield about catchy single “Live For Love.”

Please tell me the story behind writing the song “Live For Love.”

When I sat down with Ben Kasica about what I wanted to write about, this was the topic. Our song “Live For Love” is based on 1 Corinthians 13. I think in our world that we live in, so many things are glorified: money, popularity, relationships. There’s all these things glorified in our culture and in the song we’re talking about how we can do good things in the name of Christ. We can move mountains, we can give away everything we have to the poor, the Bible tells us if we don’t do those things in love, it is meaningless. For me, the reverse of that is true, we can not have money, or fame, however if what we are doing has the right motives, and if we’re treating people with kindness and patience, God sees that and that matters to Him.

Did you base the song on any Bible verses?

1 Corinthians 13:4-13: “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”

Do you have any personal application regarding your walk as a Christian in writing the song? In particular, you might address the lyrics: “I wear my heart on my sleeve, I still believe, If we have love, we have everything.”

I met Francis Chan recently, and I have his book Crazy Love. I was thrilled to meet him and our song connects to the messages of his book. There are days when I wake up and I am convicted to live out the words of the song and that Scripture passage. Today I’m going to be patient. Today I’m going to be kind.

When you live in a van with six people most of the time, there’s definitely plenty of opportunities to try to be kind, and to not keep a record of wrongs. God has put that on my heart. The other thing is to see life from an eternal perspective. The parable Jesus tells us of the widow who gave two coins is convicting. Sometimes we can only give Jesus a little, but He calls us to give of ourselves, and to give to others selflessly. Whatever you have, give those two coins with the right motivations and that will bless others and bless God.

When the world is breaking at the seams
and everyone's gone crazy
I keep holding on cuz I have a dream
of the way things could be
I wear my heart on my sleeve
I still believe
If we have love we have everything
Always hope for the best
Love trusts, Love protects

We gotta live for love
Don't stop, don't give up
We gotta live for love
That's what I'm dreaming of
3 words, 1, 2, 3, Yeah
Love's what the world needs
Live for Love
Don't stop, don't give up

Days go by and time slips away
and still I wonder
Why we live our lives in shades of grey
when we can love in color?
I wear my heart on my sleeve
I still believe
If we have love we have everything
Always hope for the best
Love trusts, Love protects!

We got, we gotta live for love
That's what, that's what I'm dreaming of!

Here’s Matthew Henry’s commentary on 1 Corinthians 13:4-13: “Some of the effects of charity are stated, that we may know whether we have this grace; and that if we have not, we may not rest till we have it. This love is a clear proof of regeneration, and is a touchstone of our professed faith in Christ. In this beautiful description of the nature and effects of love, it is meant to show the Corinthians that their conduct had, in many respects, been a contrast to it. Charity is an utter enemy to selfishness; it does not desire or seek its own praise, or honor, or profit, or pleasure. Not that charity destroys all regard to ourselves, or that the charitable man should neglect himself and all his interests. But charity never seeks its own to the hurt of others, or to neglect others. It ever prefers the welfare of others to its private advantage. How good-natured and amiable is Christian charity! How excellent would Christianity appear to the world, if those who profess it were more under this Divine principle, and paid due regard to the command on which its blessed Author laid the chief stress! Let us ask whether this Divine love dwells in our hearts. Has this principle guided us into becoming behavior to all men? Are we willing to lay aside selfish objects and aims? Here is a call to watchfulness, diligence, and prayer.”

As David and I discussed the song and the profound message, we talked about how we are commanded to love others by Jesus. This song challenges me to think about how well I am loving others. 1 John 4:19 says “We love because He first loved us.”

On page 94 of Crazy Love, Francis Chan writes: “I was challenged to do a little exercise with these verses, one that was profoundly convicting. Take the phrase love is patient and substitute your name for the word love. Do it for every phrase in the passage. By the end, don’t you feel like a liar? If I am meant to represent what love is, then I often fail to love people well. Following Christ isn’t something that can be done halfheartedly or on the side. It is not a label we can display when it is useful. It must be central to everything we do and are.”

As you listen to this great song by new band We Are Leo, think about how well you are loving others and know that Jesus loves you and wants us to “Live for Love.” Amen to that!

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.

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