Located in the creative community of Austin, TX, which is widely known for its SXSW and Austin City Limits festivals and its large collegiate population, is the 12-year-old The Austin Stone Community Church, an 8,000-member microcosm of the city. In this setting, a collective of songwriters, worship leaders, musicians, storytellers, filmmakers, editors, artists and photographers organically began to meet, sharing a communal expression of what God is doing in their church and city. Together, 70-plus members of this collective, calling themselves Austin Stone Worship, will release This Glorious Grace, Oct. 16 through The Fuel Music.
Dedicated to serving and equipping the Church in Austin, TX and around the world with content rich in theology, mission and expression, Austin Stone Worship’s new 11-track album, This Glorious Grace, was recorded live and marks the group’s seventh recording since The Austin Stone Community Church was planted in 2002.
“The motivation for this album was to capture what’s already going on in our church,” says The Austin Stone Community Church pastor of worship, Aaron Ivey. “These are the songs our church is engaged with and the stories that are already happening. Each spotlights Christ alone. He can be seen in every song, heard in every lyric.”
For the first time, and with the global Church in mind, Austin Stone Worship has recorded a live and a story-behind-the-song video for each track on the album along with a “theology paper” that outlines the biblical message encompassing the song. These and other free resources for worship teams and individual worshippers are available now at www.austinstoneworship.com.
“The videos, stories and resources for this project flow from a desire to bless and serve the people of The Austin Stone Community Church, and churches around the world,” shares Ivey. “God is infinitely worthy of more praise. There needs to be more congregations all over the globe sitting in living rooms, cathedrals, arenas and backyards worshiping Jesus.”
Also available as a free download beginning today from thisgloriousgrace.com is the title track of This Glorious Grace, which is led by worship leader Jaleesa McCreary. The opening line of the song, I need you, I need you, is the heart cry of McCreary, whose powerful, expressive vocals are a gift she no longer takes for granted. Having lost her voice, developing vocal cysts while in college as a music major, it was unclear after surgery if she would ever be able to sing again. It was during this season that she began to attend The Austin Stone Community Church.
“The Lord was breaking down so many things in me. Pride in my voice being one of those things,” confesses McCreary. “I actually learned what it looked like to follow Jesus, and to surrender everything to Him. Losing my voice became one of the best things He could have ever done for me, because I went from having no relationship with Him to meeting Him in a way I hadn’t before.”
Rising out of a church that values both worship and the Word, This Glorious Grace is suffused with biblical truth expressed uniquely through the songwriters’ lives. In addition to the songs mentioned above, the album includes “Gracious Redeemer,” which was written by Marcus Dawes while reflecting on a past season of struggle and sin. The song poignantly distills a desperation for deliverance from sin while joyfully declaring that God came and made a way: My debt is paid. My soul now saved. Oh God, You came, Redeemer.
The song, “Center My Life,” co-written by Ivey and worship leader Brett Land, is a personal and corporate prayer. “I constantly need my heart, my vision, my thoughts to be re-centered and realigned on Jesus Christ alone,” says Ivey. “You’ve got to do this God, because I do not have enough strength on my own to be centered on you… I think this resonates with our church also because there’s this sense of, ‘I need to be realigned, too.’”
“Center My Life,” as well as the title track, “Jesus True and Only” and the poignant declaration, “You Never Change,” are available now for immediate download with each pre-order of This Glorious Grace through iTunes.
For more information on all the songs and the latest news from Austin Stone Worship, including their upcoming celebration of the release of This Glorious Grace Oct. 12 of at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, go to www.austinstoneworship.com.
Source: Hoganson Media
Pre-Order This Glorious Grace on iTunes here