- Worship pastor and songwriter Zac Rowe recently joined us to discuss the inspiration and writing process behind Gateway Worship's recent song, "Living God."
With the release of so many amazing worship songs one is left wondering what to listen to first. We think it’s important to highlight transformational worship songs which is exactly what Gateway Worship delivers with their recent song, “Living God.”
Don’t take our word for it. Hear from one of the writers on this new song from Gateway Worship on why this song is so transformational and timely for the Church.
We really hope that when people hear this song and sing it themselves that it connects with their own deep desire to see God revive what they thought was dead. The Church has been called a “Sleeping Giant” by some, and we believe the time is now for an awakening and a return. We don’t want to reemerge from the pandemic to life as it was before. We know God is doing a new thing. He’s breathing life into His Church for such a time as this, and we want our songs to welcome Him to bring these dry places in our lives back to life so that we can be who He’s called us to be for Him!
Read the full interview with Gateway Worship’s, Zac Rowe, about the story behind this transformational worship song that Gateway Worship just released. Make sure to leave your reactions to this new song below in the comments!
Can you tell us a little bit about the season spiritually and personally and the space/place in which this song emerged?
In January of 2020, we felt the Lord giving us a song of reemergence. The lyrics “Come awaken us,” and “Let these dry bones rise, bring us back to life,” felt appropriate to sing even before the pandemic. But as we gather together after all the things we’ve walked through for the last couple years, it feels even more timely to ask the Living God to revive His Church again now.
When you were writing this song, did you have any thoughts about who might sing it: a person? A band? Your church? Your faith tradition/denomination? The larger worldwide Church?
We were writing this song to sing together in our church, but “Living God” is a song for all of us who don’t want to be stuck in the same patterns of apathy and spiritual slumber that we may have fallen into. It’s a rallying cry and a request for the All Powerful, Living God to breathe His breath of life on us again!
Did something in your personal/church life lead/influence the writing?
“Living God” is rooted in the story found in Ezekiel 37, where the prophet is standing in the valley of dry bones. When God directs Ezekiel to prophesy and speak to the bones, the prophet moves out of obedience and faith, and THAT is when Ezekiel experiences the restoring and resurrecting power of God. Looking at the Church as a whole today, we believe God wants to breathe life into the remnant of those who know Him, but may feel more like dry bones than a strong army. The power of God, called upon by the people of God, is what we need today. With that in mind, we wrote this song as a plea and a prayer: “Spirit of the Living God, Who was and is and is to come, breathe on us.” When God breathes, what was dormant will rise in strength again!
If collaborative, talk about those you wrote with and that process?
It was a joy to write this song with my good friend Kyle Lee. We always have fun going after the heart of God together in writing sessions. For “Living God,” we started talking about the concept of what we wanted to say and the path we felt God was leading us down. When Kyle walked over to his Juno synthesizer and started playing, he immediately played the progression that became “Living God.” The song came together really quickly that day, and it felt like God was giving us the gift of putting language and melody to the prayer we were already praying for our church and the Church at large.
Did others, friends/spouse/family/mentors interact with, inspire or encourage you during the creation of this song? In what ways?
Both my wife, Kensie, and Kyle’s wife, Shelly, were the first to hear the demo of “Living God.” They were encouraging as always, but especially so because they confirmed what we felt – that the song felt like a prayer we could dance to. And that’s what it is!
Were there any surprises in the writing/arrangement/recording of the song?
“Living God” carries a fresh sound that feels like forward momentum. When we sing it together, it is remarkable how quickly people grab onto this song. It feels like we’ve all been waiting to join in to bring this revival request before the Lord.
Did this song impact your relationship with God or People?
I think it’s fair to say both. It impacts my relationship to God because it’s a musical prayer for revival in my own personal life and in the Church as a whole. It impacts my relationship with people because every time we sing this song together in church there is a camaraderie that we feel in singing these words as one. It feels like we’re in that army that God is bringing back to life. There is so much power and community when we worship God together!
Is there an aspect of the service you think this song is particularly suitable for?
We love opening our services with “Living God.” It sets the tone with tons of energy in the arrangement, deep substance and theology in the lyrics, and a timely message for today: “God, You are welcome in this place and in our lives to bring LIFE like only You can do!”
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