You Can Do Magic (Listening to the Music in Your Heart)

Photo by Almos Bechtold on Unsplash

I’ve had You Can Do Magic by America in my head frequently over the past year.

A sample of the lyrics:

I never believed in things that I couldn’t see
I said if I can’t feel it then how can it be
No, no magic could happen to me
And then I saw you

I couldn’t believe it, you took my heart
I couldn’t retrieve it, said to myself
What’s it all about
Now I know there can be no doubt

You can do magic
You can have anything that you desire
Magic, and you know
You’re the one who can put out the fire

You know darn well
When you cast your spell you will get your way
When you hypnotize with your eyes
A heart of stone can turn to clay

Frequently, Holy Spirit will minister to me through music when simple preaching wouldn’t suffice. Some of these lyrics reach to the inside of me and affect me deeply.

You can do magic
You can have anything that you desire

I’ve been listening to a lot of messages by Mike Popovich lately, and one of the themes he preaches on frequently is Jesus’ admonition in John 16:24:

Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.

…as well as Mark 11:24:

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

Part of full joy–being happy– has to do with receiving answers to our prayers. I’m still working on this, but part of receiving answers to our prayers involves intentional meditation, considering whatever we desire in our hearts already done. It sounds New Agey, but this is what Scripture says to do when we desire something! But like I said, I’m new to this, so watch Mike’s two most recent messages and see if they minister to you.

I couldn’t believe it, you took my heart
I couldn’t retrieve it, said to myself
What’s it all about
Now I know there can be no doubt

I hear echos of Song of Solomon 4:9 here:

You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride; you have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace.

You took my heart…you stole my heart. Same thing.

I would encourage you to listen carefully to songs that are stuck in your head. Look up the lyrics. Sometimes they’re just annoying, but sometimes they’re Holy Spirit trying to speak to you.


Music that Matters: Barnabas (Introduction)

For the first band in my series, I’ve chosen Barnabas, a Christian heavy metal band from the 1980’s.

But first, the music.

No Freedom, off of Approaching Light Speed, circa 1983.

I first heard about Barnabas through my friend Jerry Wilson, who interviewed Nancyjo Mann, Kris Klingensmith, and Gary Mann in his book, God’s Not Dead And Neither Are We: The story of Christian alternative rock’s pioneers. But I didn’t really listen to Barnabas until after I friended Kris K. on Facebook. His writing style appealed to me, along with his stories of life in a rock band, so I decided to take a listen.

Initially, I didn’t like them.

I heard a few snippets on YouTube and it was OK, but heavy metal is not my go-to genre; my CD collection is filled with progressive rock, electronic music, and Americana.

But after reading more about Barnabas over a year or so, I decided to take the plunge: I bought their five albums and the rarities CD from Boone’s.

I listened through each album twice, per Kris K’s recommendation. And I liked what I heard.

Barnabas is not just heavy metal. Nancyjo Mann delivered some great vocals, and the band was fantastic. Loosely speaking, Barnabas is a heavy metal band, but here and there you’ll hear blues and a ballad or two.

Barnabas was never boring.

Alas, history, and certain preachers, were unkind to Barnabas, and the fame they deserved eluded them. Rather than telling their story again, I’ll point you to the three best sources for Barnabas history: Wikipedia, Jerry’s book, and the official fan page.

In 2019, it’s a great time to become a Barnabas fan.

Whereas their catalog before was spread across multiple labels and reissues were of varying quality (usually poor), their albums are all now available in well-made remastered editions, complete with the original cover art, short essays, and lyrics. (They aren’t true remasters, as the original master tapes are long lost–but they still sound great!) You can purchase these from Boone’s Overstock.

Sadly, their music is not available via Bandcamp or streaming platforms yet. (Drop by their Facebook page and give them some gentle encouragement in that area, won’t you?) But you can listen to the non-remastered releases on YouTube:

Find Your Heart A Home

Hear The Light

Approaching Light Speed

Feel The Fire

Little Foxes

Next up: A full exploration of their first album, Hear The Light.