Sovereign Grace Ministries has just released our 5th recording in the Overflow series. Overflow began because we simply weren’t able to put out enough projects to keep up with the songs that were being written by Sovereign Grace songwriters. Produced by local churches using local instrumentalists and vocalists, the Overflow highlight emerging songs that encourage passionate, biblically informed, Christ-glorifying worship. One of the aspects of the Overflow CDs I’m most excited about is seeing a greater variety in the songs that Sovereign Grace is producing.
“You and You Alone” is an enhanced CD, including guitar charts and lead sheets. It was recorded and produced in Vancouver, British Columbia, and features the father-son team of Pat and Joel Sczebel. I’ve known Pat for over ten years and led worship with him on the Worship God Live CD a few years ago. He is the worship pastor at the Sovereign Grace church in Surrey and is one of the most contagiously joyful guys I know. He also has a significant songwriting gift. More importantly, he is a great husband and dad, and this CD is one more sign of how he’s passed a love for the Savior on to his children.
“You and You Alone” has ten songs, and the writing credits ended up being split between Pat and Joel. Here are my comments on the songs.
Trust in You (Joel) opens the CD with an energetic, faith-filled proclamation of God’s sovereignty and power. I like the fact that the second verse expresses a desire to be used by God because we know he’ll protect us in every situation.
Over All (Pat) is a mid-tempo song, again declaring God’s sovereignty. Verse 1 acknowledges God’s rule over creation, while verse 2 reminds us that God rules over our sufferings.
Yesterday, Today, and Forever (Joel) is drawn from Hebrews 13:8, but also includes references to Ps. 102:26-27, Ps. 25:3, Colossians 1:15-19, and Rom. 8:38-39. I love to see younger guys writing songs that are saturated with God’s Word.
The Greatest of All (Pat) is a stirring 6/8 song that includes a chorus taken from a hymn:
Redeemed how I love to proclaim it
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb
Redeemed through your infinite mercy
Your child, and forever, I am
The verses fill out what it means to be redeemed. Jesus gave his life to “buy me back from slavery,” to “set me free from my chains.” His death alone “canceled the debts that I owed,” and “satisfied the law’s demands.”
In You is a simple confession of what we find in our union with Christ – grace, perfect rest, deliverance from shame, shelter from what we deserved, awesome mercy, joy forever, and so much more.
I Surrender All (Pat) is a reflective, piano-driven song of commitment that I contributed a partial verse to.
Father, you’ve given your precious Son
Who laid down his life for my sin
He purchased my freedom and made me an heir
Now I belong to him
You Are Good (Joel) begins with a bass solo and leads into a driving song of joyful celebration that calls to mind God’s goodness, expressed in giving us new life and lifting us up when we fall. You can download a free MP3 and guitar chart of this song at the end of this post.
Lord, You Are Gracious (Pat) is a beautiful reflection on God’s mercy towards undeserving sinners. “You do not treat us as our sins deserve, though we are guilty as charged; Your Son was treated as if responsible for all my sin.”
You Alone (Joel) is a hymn-like song that leads us into wholehearted devotion to the one who in wondrous love gave his Son to bear all our sins.
Jesus, You Are Beautiful (Pat) is the kind of song that Pat excels at writing. A simple expression of love for the Savior who first loved us.
The CD ends with a simple reprise of I Surrender All, accompanied by a guitar, and at one point a cappella. It’s an appropriate response to the rich truths that have been explored and celebrated for the entire album.