Category Archives: Features

Message Mondays and Worship Wednesdays – Slowing Down To Realise that God Has Been With Us All Along!

What we fail to realise is that we were not made to do everything. I know that sounds like I’ve said the deadliest thing ever, but really, we weren’t made to do everything. Think about that. Really. When have we as a human race tried to fit whatever we can, within a 24 hour day? Because honestly, just because we see superhero shows like Batman, Spiderman, Fantastic Four, X-Men or Ironman on TV, that doesn’t mean we can emulate them in every aspect of our lives. Because if you end up doing everything that you’d like, you won’t do anything well. That is our crime as a human race. We are rushing around and undertaking whatever we can, in fear that our days are numbered, therefore, what we do with them ought to matter. But then in not slowing down, we often miss out on what the Lord is trying to speak to us through the circumstances and scenarios we find ourselves in. I know in my life there’s been moments when I’ve had to catch myself, consciously slowing down because I’ll know that if I don’t, I’ll run myself to the ground. What about you?

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NEW SINGLES OF 2017 (Part 2)

So…not so long as two years (between the first ‘new singles’ post and the second), so I guess that is a plus. But really, on a serious note, 2017 so far has had a flurry of great new songs. Therefore, another ‘New Singles of 2017’ post is fitting right? Here in the posts before, I have highlighted 5 songs that I reckon will peak in radio, as well as impact listeners far and wide. In the previous post, I decided to focus on “Even If”, the poignant radio single from the ever-reliable MercyMe, “Tears”, the piano prominent acoustic melody from former Sanctus Real frontman Matt Hammitt, “This We Know”, from Kristian Stanfill and the Passion Worship team (originally famous on Vertical Church Band’s Frontiers way back in July 2016), “Run The Race”, from Holly Starr, quite possibly one of the most underrated young female artists of tomorrow’s generation, as well as “All That Matters”, the chart-topping track from Colton Dixon (also one of my favourite songs of 2017 as well!). So, here I am, a little over 1 month later, posting another ‘new singles of 2017’ post…what are these next 5 songs, that I reckon will become hits in weeks and even months to come? (aside from “Even If”, which I reckon is my favourite song of 2017 thus far, and a song by MercyMe that ought to have as much emotion and impact as songs like “God With Us” and “I Can Only Imagine”!) Well, read on to find out! Which songs will you pick up when they become available on iTunes?

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TOP 10 ___ (And Worship Wednesdays): Worship Songs That Will Impact A New Generation in 2017

Don’t you feel tired of singing the same songs every Sunday morning at church services? Not that there’s anything wrong with singing “How Great is Our God” for the billionth time, except when you realise that you are indeed singing it for the billionth time. Songs are great, but sometimes, all you want is to just sing a new song. And don’t fret, because God wants you to sing a new song as well. Not that I’m great with quoting from the bible, but I do remember this- that we were supposed to sing a new song to the Lord, according to the start of Psalm 96:1. We were restless for a reason, and while I know there’s nothing wrong with singing songs to death, sometimes to sing a new song (with obviously a new easy-to-learn melody) means to bring forth a spirit of re-awakening and renewal, as we revisit some truths that may have been lost over the years in favour of monotony and the mundane.

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WOW HITS 2018: WHAT’S YOUR PREDICTION (PART 3)?

So…it’s been about a couple of months since the last WOW Hits 2018 prediction. Gee, doesn’t time fly, right? Anyway, during that time, there have been many radio singles that have come and gone, and some that have been on the airwaves for the longest time ever (in a good way!)

Even though we already made a predicted list a while ago (you can view them both here and here!), there’s plenty of new songs and soon-to-be released songs that have been revealed over the past while, so without further ado, here’s my next stab at WOW Hits 2018, and stay tuned to more predictions later this year! Happy predicting!

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TOP 10 ___: Top Thirty Inspirational ‘Mainstream’ Songs Over The Past 5 Years!

Welcome to the latest instalment of our most recent blog series Top Tens. Last time, we unveiled our favourite animated Disney movies of the 90’s and 2000’s!

This upcoming week is probably one of the most anticipated weeks of the year thus far- the movie The Shack releases, starring Sam Worthington, Octavia Spencer and Tim McGraw, based on the critically acclaimed novel, where the main character has a spiritual awakening after a tragic event forces him to basically revaluate his life (yeah, I still need to read the book, but it’s on my to do list!). Just this past week, the companion movie soundtrack released- while we are reviewing the album in the near future, within a few days; let me say that I have listened to the project, and the mix of songs from Christian, country and mainstream pop artists is quite unique and thought-provoking.

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TOP 10 ___: Top Ten Animated Disney Movies of YesterYear (1990s and 2000s)

With all the live action Disney remakes that have been in the pipeline for the last few years, you wonder if Disney has any original idea left. Sad to say, when I heard this week that Disney was planning for The Lion King remake, this time with live action (sort of how I reckon the Jungle Book was created, using a lot of CGI) instead of it being animated, I scratched my head. Why? The cartoon version was good, in fact, revolutionary for its time period. Is it because they always want to update the stories so that the kids of today can relate? Regardless of their motivations, live action reboots of original cartoon classics like Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella, Pete’s Dragon and The Jungle Book have already been completed and others like Beauty and the Beast, Mulan, Mary Poppins Returns, Christopher Robin and The Lion King in the pipeline for a live action movie sometime in the future.

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MESSAGE MONDAYS & THROWBACK TUESDAYS – The Light Meets The Dark

Yes, as you can see from the title, I am a very much avid fan of CCM band Tenth Avenue North. Or rather, a fan of Mike Donehey’s devotional youtube messages about his songs that he has released on the internet throughout the years. In fact, Tenth Avenue North has to be one of the best bands that CCM offers to us at the moment- starting their career way back in 2008 when they signed to Reunion Records, the band delivered chart topping albums like Over and Underneath, The Light Meets the Dark, The Struggle, Cathedrals and more recently Followers. To say that Mike the lead singer has a way with words in how he imparts heartfelt and poignant truths to listeners is very much an understatement. And while I know that their latest album Followers can arguably be the quintet’s most emotive and encouraging yet, I can’t ignore where it all started. It was in 2009/10 when I started listening to the band and their music on a regular basis- safe to say that The Light Meets the Dark is a momentous album for me- with songs like “Healing Begins”, “You Are More”, “Strong Enough to Save”…it was then when I realised that Tenth Avenue North and their music was something special.

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TV Thursdays and Sentimental Saturdays: The Shows of Our Childhood

I’ve been reflecting lately about the TV shows I watch, both now and in years gone before, and how that has affected who I am today. Not that I truly believe that what I watch really has an impact on who I am as a person, but I’ve often pondered, mostly on a Saturday when things are quiet, about my TV watching habits. And how often my favourite TV shows, if you’d rank them from 1-20, are mostly of TV shows that have ended rather than still currently running. Not that I enjoy most of the shows that I currently watch, it’s just that unfortunately (or fortunately whichever way you look at it), most of my favourite shows are currently not on TV anymore. So let’s just give this a stab, shall we? Without further ado, my top 20 TV shows (of all time), and how that further relates to this blog post about being sentimental when it comes to reflecting about our childhood and how our TV watching habits may indeed shape our worldview much more than we may think.

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First Impression Review – Colton Dixon’s “Identity”

Eliminated from American Idol Season 11 in 7th place, pop/CCM artist Colton Dixon has been making waves within the CCM industry ever since his highly-publicised crossover hit of a first album A Messenger, that debuted in 2013 to critical acclaim. Using the same platform as many artists, like Carrie Underwood, Danny Gokey, Mandisa, Jason Castro, Daughtry, Kelly Clarkson and Kris Allen; to start a career in music; Colton’s unexpected exit from the show was more of a blessing in disguise. Signing a record deal with Sparrow Records, and 2 albums later, Colton, alongside Mandisa, has been one of the most successful and greatest finds, out of anyone who has moved from American Idol to Christian music, ever. With much success, both critically and commercially, Colton, though only in his mid-twenties, writes and sings way beyond his years, so much so that his two successful albums A Messenger and Anchor were released within 1 and a half years of each other. Now he has journeyed into the unknown with his new album Identity, releasing March 24th- sure he still has his trademark pop-rock-radio sound, but this album is different from the rest- less rock than Anchor and much more dance and 1980s style music that is incorporated throughout his power-pop anthems in this 11 track album (17 in the deluxe edition).

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Fun Fridays – Board Games

Yes, I know another blog post series that we as a site post from time to time…and the first post is today. But just hear me out. Not literally, but just have a read through. If this post series doesn’t resonate with you…well, still give it a chance. And while my goal is to write Fun Fridays on a regular basis (not sure about Food Fridays or even Futuristic Fridays, both these posts are up in limbo at the moment), I do realise that realistically, I may not post as much as I want to…and I have to be ok with that. Because as this blog post series suggests, this is a time for me to post, about, you guessed it, having fun. Because frankly, as I look around at people at the place I work, I notice one thing- most people aren’t enjoying life as much as they should. Sure, that is a grave assumption, and many who read this statement might be up in arms about what I just said. But it’s true. People have somehow lost the spark and innocence that were once in all of us. And what I sadly see is this- people going about their mundane lives and basking themselves in busyness, hurrying and rushing around, all in the name of creating a world for the future, at the expense of enjoying it right now. Sure we can claim that what we’re doing is for the future generations, but if we’re miserable now, how’s that going to be as setting an example to the future of how they ought to live? The future and what we have to do to steer the course of circumstances that could either make or break the world of tomorrow is of utmost importance, but we really do need to have fun in the process.

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