This is one of the songs I am most excited about right now. I am beyond thrilled to have this music video out and into the world!
Several years ago I sat down for a writing session with my good friend, Rocky Favia, Jr. Sadly, this was one of the very few writing sessions that just didn’t really go anywhere. We wrote a song, but neither of us left feeling very excited about the song that was written. (It’s cool. I only half get together with Rocky to write songs… I mostly just enjoy catching up and hearing about what God is up to in his life. Writing songs is just nice perk of the friendship.)
Probably a year later I sat down at the piano with an idea for a song in my head. I wrote the song “Nothing Can Separate Us” in response to what Paul wrote in Romans 8:31-39…
What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written,
“For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”
Romans 8:31-39, ESV
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
I finished the song, but the song kept playing over and over in my mind. About a week later my wife and I boarded a plane heading for Israel, where we would spend 14 days walking where Jesus walked. I could not get that song out of my head for the entire plane ride. That night, as I lay awake thinking about the song and about God’s goodness, I suddenly became aware that the first line from the song was the same first line of the throwaway song that Rocky and I had written about a year beforehand.
You are strong in the battle, Lord
Yep. Same line, different song.
Nevertheless, we wrote that line together.
From a hotel room somewhere in the old city of Jerusalem I fired off a text to Rocky. It was the middle of the night for me, but probably daytime for him:
“Congratulations! You co-wrote a song that you didn’t know about.”
The song was supposed to go on Polen Band’s “There Is Nothing New Under the Sun (Volume 4)”, but we never released that album. COVID struck and shut the world down, so it didn’t make sense to release the album. Instead, I decided to put it on my solo album, We Are Loved, featuring Polen Band.
I mixed the song (along with the rest of the songs) for the We Are Loved album, but I decided to reach out to Warren David to have him mix the song again for the music video. I think his mix ended up being quite a bit better (no surprise there… he is really an amazing mix engineer!)
Matt Meek shot the music video featuring Polen Band in the third story space above Vertical Runner of Wooster. I can’t imagine what the poor people of Wooster were thinking while we were shooting this video, but I think it turned out pretty amazing.
(As a side note, while we were tearing down our equipment following the final shot, we were totally attacked by bats! That was exciting…)