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SOUNDBITES: With Let There Be Wonder, Matt Redman puts the focus on Jesus and brings the church to worship the living King

Matt Redman is arguably one of the world’s most well-known worship leaders. From the reflective “Heart of Worship” to “10,000 Reasons” and numerous others, it is certain that most contemporary congregations have heard or sung some of Redman’s songs.

A prolific songwriter, Redman has recorded no less than 16 solo worship albums and contributed on numerous others, as well as publishing six books, primarily on the theme of worship. In January of this year, Redman released his most recent project from Integrity Music, Let There Be Wonder, produced by Jacob Sooter and Joshua Silverberg.

Redman first came to my attention after I heard the story of “The Heart of Worship.” Redman, as music leader in his British congregation, had the worship team step down while the church re-evaluated what worship really meant. After a time of reflection, Redman wrote “bring me back to the heart of worship….it’s all about You.” Since that time, Redman has proven through his career to consistently desire to bring his audience to praise the Lord and Creator and to deflect the attention from himself. Let There Be Wonder certainly follows through on this goal.

Let There Be Wonder opens with The Same Jesus, singing about the fact that the Jesus of the resurrection and the Bible’s signs and wonders is the same One we worship today. We Praise You is a triumphant song of praise. The bridge says it well: “This is what living looks like/ This is what Heaven sounds like/ We praise You.”

Upon Him is a beautiful song of remembrance of Christ’s redeeming sacrifice for us. “The wage of sin, the weight of our transgressions/ Upon Him, Upon Him.” The title track Let There Be Wonder is a compelling plea to realize the wonder and awe that is due to our God. “Is He not the God who parted the sea? Is He not the One who heals our disease? Is He not the source of all that we need?.....Is He not the hope still with us today?” This powerful song is a beautiful reminder of the many reasons we worship.

Musically, it is difficult to break new ground in a worship album, and Let There Be Wonder is not the exception to that trend. However, with each track, whether slow and reflective or exuberant and joyful, there is the constant awareness that the songs are all about and for Jesus. There is no ambivalence here. Redman is consistent in his desire to bring the church to worship the living King, and this project fulfills that desire thoroughly.

I have to say, I was pleased with Matt Redman’s latest release. Let There Be Wonder is an album that focusses the listener to worship the Saviour and reminds us anew of all the many reasons that He is deserving of our praise.

Tracey Evison, a musician and educator on P.E.I., writes this column regularly for The Guardian. She can be contacted by email at traceylesley538@gmail.com.

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