Release Date: June 12th 2020
Reviewed by: Joshua Andre
- Your Love Feels Like Home
Jonny Diaz, the songwriter of “More Beautiful You”, one of the most inspiring melodies about self-worth, beauty and identity ever (along with Britt Nicole’s “Gold” and Alessia Cara’s “Scars To your Beautiful”), has had quite a remarkable career since releasing his first album in 2003. Jonny was offered a baseball scholarship in 2002, however he declined- Jonny felt that God was moving him to minister to people through music so instead Jonny has since provided us with plenty of heart-warming and lyrically poignant songs bringing us all closer to God, from the heartfelt ballad “Beauty Of The Cross” that describes how much Jesus loves us to die on the cross for us, to the revealing and sometimes uncomfortable radio single “Break My Heart”- a call to action, where Jonny proactively urges fellow believers to act out their faith and be the hands and feet of the community.
In my opinion (and this is only my opinion though, yours may be different!), Jonny’s songwriting calibre is in the same or similar vein to artists like Bebo Norman, Jason Gray, Nichole Nordeman and Andrew Peterson, and musically reminding me of Brandon Heath, Josh Wilson and Steven Curtis Chapman (and I reckon many listeners and critics may agree with me as well!), as many of Jonny’s acoustic pop melodies have changed the lives of many, while also excelling on the Christian Billboard charts and other radio formats. Though with such a hefty and lofty comparison to many contemporaries of his which are just as popular, or maybe even more so, than him, Jonny doesn’t let these comparisons faze him. This is evident shown in his latest EP Sweetness And Sorrow (reviewed here!) as well as Jonny’s latest single “Your Love Feels Like Home”, which released a few weeks ago.
I think back to when I first started dating my wife almost 13 years ago, and my heart begins to pound! There was so much excitement, so much uncertainty, and so much nervousness. These early days were more about putting my best foot forward and less about letting my guard down. 13 years and 3 kids later, she is now my safest place. Nervousness has been replaced by comfort. Acting has been replaced by authenticity. It’s not a Hollywood romance. It’s so much better! I find so many parallels in my relationship with the Jesus. I’ve learned that I don’t have to put on a show. My prayers look less like some type of ritual as I’m dressed in my Sunday best and more like a genuine conversation. It feels less like jumping through hoops and more like a long walk with an old friend. It feels less like trying to follow a rule book and more like gratitude. It feels… like home!
As “Your Love Feels Like Home” reminds us that it is only Jesus’ love that can and will ever make us feel like home and make us feel like we’re loved, worthy and wanted; we are met with a stirring acoustic guitar ballad that has Jonny at the top of his game as a singer and as a songwriter. With his enthusiasm and passion still compelling and powerful, this track is definitely for fans of Jonny, as well as those who need encouragement in their daily walk with Jesus. Even when 2020 is pressing down upon us like an unwelcome parasite, Jonny is like a close friend, letting us know that we’re all going to be alright with Jesus by our side. We can feel at peace and at home with Him.
With Jonny Diaz still right now being underrated in the CCM industry, I personally hope that “Your Love Feels Like Home” will make him be noticed by…almost everyone I guess; this melody reminds us all that Jonny is back to his brilliant best. With Jonny’s newest Centricity Music single being one of my favourites of 2020; there’s no reason not to listen to this underrated melody, and be encouraged and inspired! Well done Jonny for creating thoughtful music. Bring on the next full-length album I say (maybe at the end of 2020 or early 2021! Maybe a Christmas project?)!
RIYL: Josh Wilson, Brandon Heath, Matthew West, Steven Curtis Chapman, Tenth Avenue North