Behind the Song: O Great Love

In our travels, we get the privilege of serving in a wide variety of contexts, from large conferences to small country churches. The variety is terrific. We can’t help but love hundreds of students bursting with energy and fervor in worship. Deep in our DNA is an equally profound affection for small but vibrant faith communities that are grateful and authentic in their worship.

While engaged in a number of “acoustic” events over the past few years, we have worked to bring thoughtfulness and creativity into our arrangements and set lists. The response has been so great that we added those songs to almost all of our concerts and decided to follow up our full-length album with a self-produced acoustic EP.

We wanted to add some new songs to this project and had a few ideas, but it wasn’t until one of our first studio days that the song “O Great Love” was written. The recording you hear on the CD is one of the first times that song was ever played in any setting. Joel’s trademark lead guitar part color the song beautifully.

Verse 2 contains my favorite lyrics of the song:

“There’s an everlasting hope
God is great and can be known
Jesus freely paid it all
Raised my soul, my soul”

It is powerful to declare such rich truth in the midst of a fun song!

One of the most surprising responses to “O Great Love” has been from children. We have received dozens of stories and videos of kids singing along, dancing around the living room, or pumping their fists and singing at the top of their lungs from the back seat of the car.

“O Great Love” and the “Worship Fist Pump” that goes with the chorus have become an absolute favorite. We often joke about being northerners who stole some Bluegrass for the song. Interestingly, the second group of people we ever played the song for live was in Kentucky. They gave their stamp of approval, and it has been in our set ever since.