Media Monday- A Branch Lifted Up In Worship

It seems a little crazy, and a little more providential…but I was doing a Google Image search for ‘branch’ to find some pics for a design project I’m working on and I came upon a picture of this band.  So, of course, I clicked on it.  I was pleased to find what was there…pleased so much that I downloaded one of their albums an hour later.

Their site offered a great introduction to the Branch story and heart:

The husband/wife duo in Branch began at a local Bible study and two albums later they have found a voice and platform to champion Jesus Christ and the things He’s about: Love, Justice, and Hope.  When the band isn’t actively involved in their base church in Athens TX, they are traveling the country striving with all they are to create an atmosphere of worship where people can get their eyes of themselves and onto a God who can change everything (2 Cor 3:18).

Living in a city with four college’s, the band got it’s start leading worship for a city-wide collegiate Bible study called Grace. Steven Patterson was attending college at Hardin Simmons where he met his wife Rachel and ultimately formed a band. The band got a great opportunity to trade weeks leading worship with Jeff Berry alongside the teaching of Matt Chandler at Grace (Abilene’s collegiate bible study).  After consistently leading worship at the Bible study and at their local church (UBC), the band began traveling the country to lead worship at various camps, conferences, and retreats. In the Fall of 2005, the band officially became Branch with the release of their debut album “Desperate for Real”.  The band name comes from John 15 with the key verse being “abide in me for apart from me you can do nothing (15:5).  “We felt like we always needed to remember that!” With this first record, the band’s ministry reached beyond the borders of the Bible study and soon the band was traveling full time leading others to experience, know, and worship God. Branch’s newest released “The Side Effects of Seeing,” released in September 07. The bands purpose could be summed up in this sentence: to creatively and effectively lead others into the presence of God where they can respond to God and be changed into His likeness.  We strive with all we have to create an ATMOSPHERE of praise where people can get their eyes off of themselves and on to the GLORY of GOD they will be transformed!

What impressed me at quick glance was the way their music was simply focussed on glorifying Christ.  Over the years I have grown weary of worship bands that are leading others to long for something that, if they had a clear grasp of the Gospel, they already posses in the finished work of Jesus.  Branch gets the Gospel, and it makes the worship powerful.

A song on their live album Nothing to Lose captures this well.  The song is Victory.  Christ is our victory!  Amen!

Here is the Audio:

Here are the lyrics:

VICTORY

You left Your rightful throne
You came and took my place
You suffered all alone
Then You rose from the grave

Pre-Chorus

Now my sin is gone
Now my sin is gone

Chorus

You’re my victory, You’re my victory
You won the war for my soul and I’m Yours forever!

V2

When darkness wages war
Death on every side
You’re my only hope
Jesus You’re my only light

You’ll deliver me
You’ll deliver me

Bridge

I stand pure by Your blood; strong in Your power
I am confident in Love and I stand, I stand in You

This is the good news.  We need more artists like Branch to proclaim this in ways that we can sing with communal joy. When you can…support these artists.  If it burns in you….become one!

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