It is not right for someone to change the meaning of a song because the words do not mean what they want them to mean. I found the following on a Web site:
“Anointed songwriter Lenny LeBlanc is also an expert designer and builder of fine wood furniture. God’s gift that enables Lenny to craft artistry from wood also enables him to craft words into songs of worship that flow from his heart to the Lord’s.”
How he and Paul Baloche wrote the song “Above All:”
“Paul and I are good friends. He flew in to help me write the songs for this album. The first night he got there, he played a few ideas of songs he’d started. He played the verse for a song that he’d had for two years, but couldn’t find a chorus to go with it. It didn’t even have a name yet, but talked about how God is above all kings, kingdoms and wonders. The next morning I got up early, went into the studio, and the Lord just gave me the chorus. Later when Paul came in, I played it for him. We were both weeping as we sang it – we couldn’t even get through it.”
(Above All, by Lenny LeBlanc and Paul Baloche, (c) 1999 Integrity’s Hosanna! Music/ASCAP & LenSongs Publishing (administered by Integrity’s Hosanna! Music)/ASCAP) http://www.integritymusic.com/new/artist/5-99.html
freshman youth and family ministry major from Pfluggerville
I was a little irked when I read the article about Dr. Reese writing new lyrics for “Above All.” It seemed to me that just because the imagery of the song didn’t speak to her personally, she believed that we should all sing it a different way.
First, the comparison of Jesus to a rose being “trampled on the ground,” is meant to convey a picture of something beautiful and precious being treated as worthless. In what way does that not fit the picture of Christ given us in the Bible?
Secondly, Dr. Reese objects to the phrase “you took the fall” because she doesn’t believe it is poetic enough. This is a matter of personal opinion, not of theological difference.
Lastly, Dr. Reese says that the words “me above all” place too much focus on the self and detract from the message of Christ being “above all things.” However, within the context of the song, these words state that Christ valued us, humans, above all other considerations, even above his own life. It is certainly not appropriate to focus only our own worth, but the song does not do this.
The song is not meant to encapsulate all of Christian belief in a few verses. Rather, it is meant to portray one aspect of Christ’s sacrifice-its very personal nature to the Christian.
Dr. Reese seems to want to sing the song her way because she personally disliked the original version, for she seems to have no actual objections to the song’s theology. Her attitude ignores the fact that those words she so summarily discarded speak to some people in a deep and meaningful way.
Sara E. Martinez
freshman international studies major from Victoria