My favorite songs to lead in corporate worship are the ones saturated with gospel truth. The church needs to sing these songs and remind ourselves, and those around us, what Christ has indeed done.
Isn't it funny how, when given too much of a good thing, it can become stale, tasteless, and boring? Unfortunately, this happens all too much in the Christian life. Singing together during our weekly gatherings are some of the best opportunities we have as church leaders to help remind our sojourners how great the good news of Jesus is!
That's one of the reasons I love “Made Alive” by Citizens & Saints. It's soaked with gospel truth taken straight from the scriptures... and it's singable! It’s a great way to praise Jesus and remind us how great His redeeming sacrifice is, not to mention it inspires us to live and walk in this newness of life.
But let's get to the grooviness of this tune. It jams. From the 70's style disco drum beat to the electric keyboard melody to the infectious bass line, it's hard to throw this song on and not start bobbing your head. (Of course, as a worship leader, this song works in any context so you don't have to worry about having that rhythm groove nailed.)
One of the things I’ve found as I've led this song in my local church is that, because of the song’s simplicity, we can add to it. For instance, you’re primarily listening to the drum beat and bass line during the verses, and at times it can sound a bit empty. What we’ve done in the past is add a nice keyboard pad and sustained overdriven guitar chords, and while it works for us, there are many other options depending on the context you’re in and the band makeup.
A good practice to get into when deciding on new songs to add to your church service is to strip them down to their base level. Whether it’s an acoustic guitar or a piano, if you can play the song stripped down to its bare bones and it resonates, you’ll likely want to add it into your rotation. I've always told my team that the original recordings are guides to get us where we need to be, and “Made Alive” a great example of that.
“Made Alive” is singable, filled with gospel truth, and is very adaptable. So, if you fear that your team can’t pull it off like Zach and the guys, no worries. You can make it your own.
This is a great song to open up your services or close them out. It also might get stuck in your congregation’s heads all day, and that's a good thing.
By Rob Rash