Awake O Sleeper – A River Wild

By Linda

A bluesy, Southern rock style guitar riff in a short introduction beckons you into A River Wild, the latest album released by Awake O Sleeper in 2015.

All Hands On Deck uses imagery of navigating a ship in rough waters, requiring “all hands on deck” mustering all faith and proclaiming “this ship ain’t going down. When tough times come we need to give all that we have to get through, helping those around us to stay the course. Using our God-given determination we can overcome insurmountable odds.

Saw This Coming is a very realistic look at love. “Love ain’t always what we think it should be” the lyric goes, “we know all about it” and “we saw this coming,  now we’re wiser.” Unrealistic expectations can destroy a relationship. A more realistic approach with commitment provides staying power. ” I will choose and I have chosen to love you every single day”. This is great advice.

Gethsemane is a powerful song of imagery going back to the garden where Jesus prayed sweat as drops of blood while his disciples, instructed to watch and pray, fell asleep. “Early morning dream like state, sleep comes for me but I try to stay awake.” You can just feel yourself identifying with the disciples, struggling with the flesh, trying to do what Jesus asked but failing to pull it off. Isn’t that the way we feel sometimes? God has a plan for our day, to reach someone, serve them or to spend time with Him but we aren’t awake to his plan. We sleep right through it.

Into the Water has my favorite lyric on the album, “I face my demons, they wear their scars. I call on Jesus, He’s overcome”. The song ends repeating this several times, emphasizing it. Like a victory song against the enemy of our soul, it creates a rise of faith in me. 1 JOHN 4:4  says “You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.” God is greater. Call on Jesus because He has overcome!

Ghost of a Man speaks to our humanity. “I wish I were a finer man, like the ones who came before. If I were an angel, would the mountains be dissolved? If I were an angel, maybe then I wouldn’t fall.” How we fail God time and time again in our lack of faith, in our disobedience, but he loves us still. Bearing the heart of failure with the line “In the end, it’s all I’ve been, a ghost of a man.” is a despairing thought but then “Like a river wild, you forgive.” speaks of God’s great love for us. I love the bluesy guitar ending.  The song leaves you with a feeling of surrender to our Savior who forgives our sin.  Like a river wild, you found me and washed my sin away.

This is an album you can listen to over and over. It soothes the soul with reflection, demands repentance and leaves you with the hope of a Savior who gave it all so we could be forgiven and love others. Listen to the album here: