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Tis So Sweet

Jeff Anderson

In light of the out of control situation in our country, I thought I would give away a track that is bringing me a ton of hope these days. Praying for all of you out there! Hope this brings you a little comfort and joy today.

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Welcome friends! Super excited that All Things New is not only available here on my website but you can also grab it here: 

https://music.apple.com/us/album/all-things-new/1513157255?uo=4&app=music

and wherever digital music is sold or streamed! 

 

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My grandmother turns 98 this year and I recently made a trip back to Georgia to visit with her. I got to spend some great time with her walking, playing music together, and just catching up. I asked her as many questions as I could think of and listened to her talk about heaven. She made me my favorite pie and sang to me. She told me old stories of my childhood. We laughed and drank sweet tea. She cried as she talked about the day my granddaddy died, several years ago. I sat with her and tried to be as present as I could soaking up the memories we were making moment by moment. I filmed her just in case I forgot anything. I am so thankful that I have been able to be a part of my grandmother's life. She is the strongest person I know and she has always loved me and accepted me unconditionally. No matter what she offers a sweet word of encouragement or kindness, whatever it is I am going through. She is fiercely protective of me and adores my wife and our kids. She gave me my awesome mother and has been a great example of living in grace and serving God with her life.

As I hugged my grandmother goodbye on the last day of my trip, I got choked up. I realized that God could call my grandmother home any day. I realized life is short and the importance of cherishing the moments we are given and living with a grateful heart. I am inspired by my grandmother's desire to be a witness for Jesus and to appreciate the opportunities that God has given me to serve his people in worship. She has inspired me to see the importance of forgiveness, leaving the past behind you and to keep moving forward in life. She has inspired me to be independent and self-reliant. And I realized how much the small things we do every day can impact the lives of others and just how quickly our lives go by on earth.

It was an enriching and impactful trip that was truly good for my soul. 

Yesterday, Today, The Same 

As 2020 has drawn to a close and we embark on the new year, its almost like turning the page to a whole new chapter in our life stories. We  are glad to have made it through some challenging times, during a year filled with uncertainty, anxiety and even the loss of cherished loved ones. Some of us are eager to close the 2020 chapter and never look back. We long for normalcy and peace. We are looking forward to the next chapter being better than the one we were just in. But what if the new year isn't the reset button we had hoped for and what if we continue to struggle with challenging circumstances? What if 2021 has its own set of hardships and difficulties to face? What are we supposed to do then? In an uncertain world, that we have been told is not our home we can hold onto one thing: Jesus. Jesus truly is the Way, the True and the Life. His promises are real, His presence is real and a relationship with Him is the only path to everlasting peace during this time, in this life, and beyond. Serving Jesus with our lives is the only way to make this new chapter and the ones that follow truly matter. We can experience hope, joy, peace and love in relationship with Jesus because He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow, no matter what year it is and no matter what challenges we are facing.

 

A Little Early...Who Cares! Merry Christmas Ya Filthy Animals! 

We have officially started decorating the house for the holidays! A little premature, yes but I am feeling joyful and ready for some celebration. Even after the challenges presented in 2020 I can look back and truly appreciate a year of great growth and change. I have grown in my faith and I have learned more about Jesus in my life, I have grown even closer to my beautiful family, and I have worked hard to become a better singer/songwriter. I have learned to appreciate all of the ways great and small that God shows up and works amazing miracles in my life. I am thankful for extraordinary friendships, determined fellow worshipers, and brave church leaders who have worked undeterred to continue to serve and support ministry this year. I am ready to hunker down and celebrate this holiday season grateful for the things in my life that truly matter.  As we move into 2021 and beyond, let's try and stay focused on things that matter and not sweat the small stuff or give energy to distractions that aren't that important in the bigger picture anyway. God is in control of everything and all we can do is try to live in relationship with Him seeking His will for our lives. Merry Christmas friends! I hope you have a sweet and restful holiday season!

 

The Early Bird Catches the Worm 

For the last several weeks, I have been rising with the sun to write new songs. One of the things I love about having a creative job is finding inspiration in spending quality time with the Lord (especially in the quiet, early hours of morning). I have also been co-writing with good friends and it's been epic engaging in cooperative artistry with other talented musicians. It's so cool to create something out of nothing!  I love the songs that are coming out of this process and I am so excited to start recording them. It really been such an awesome period of refueling and a fun challenge to write from different perspectives! It's also nice to have the weather changing and have even more of a reason to be holed up with a warm cup of coffee busy in the studio or snuggling with my family watching a flick. Sometimes I pinch myself that I am so lucky. Anyway--be on the look at for new tunes coming atcha!

 

 

Wrapping Up the Summer! 

Summer is beginning to wrap up and I am really looking forward to the fall. With temps around here reaching the upper 90's the last several days, I am ready for the cool down to begin! It's sort of the down side of church outdoors..the massive sweat factor that is definitely at play. HA! Regardless, I have absolutely loved the freedom of worship outside where we can move, breathe and still meet together for fellowship. It's been incredible!

I have also been so thankful that God keeps opening doors for worship opportunities nationwide and has been faithfully and miraculously taking such great care of my family. We have had such an amazing summer full of friendship and adventure despite the Covid limitations. I feel immeasurably thankful and blessed for this special time in my life. 

As we look ahead, I have been reflecting on how awesome the reception to All Things New has been! I have been blown away by the response and deeply humbled by the love I have received from y'all. Thank you for continuing to pour into my ministry! It's actually inspired me to start writing again and to be working on new music whenever possible. I am looking forward to putting out a few new projects in 2021 and 2022! I keep meeting such talented and generous people that continue to inspire my musical journey and my ministry. It truly is humbling and mind blowing the way God works things together for good. Stay tuned--more exciting things are on the horizon.


 

Gratitude and Joy 

I have spent the last several weeks waking up and starting my day with a prayer of thankfulness. Even in the midst of outside distractions, I am incredibly thankful for my life and its blessings. I feel like as I focus on gratitude-- as almost a laundry list of things I am blessed with, then automatically my joy increases and my trust in Jesus increases. When I choose thankfulness and joy suddenly I am more trusting of God's hand on my life because I take stock in what He has already done. Sometimes its easy to churn internally on outside distractions (anyone see the news lately?!) and focus on futile things but that's not going to get you on a path of living your life with the freedom to serve God and love others. Often with an exhale, I try to pray thankfulness and gratitude into my morning and start the day with quiet contentment and true joy. It's a worthy endeavor.

Anyway, as I get ready to march out the door to enjoy summer adventures with my friends and family, I am grateful for all the small things that matter most. I am stoked that the sun is shining, my body still moves and I am surrounded by people who love me and make me smile. I am thankful that God has been so immeasurably generous in my life and that He loves me. What are you thankful for?

 

Grace and Freedom 

In the last few weeks I have been writing new songs again and been incredibly inspired by A.W. Tozer. I received a daily devotional from one of my friends and it's been awesome to read through it every day. I was struck by an entry about sin and God's grace. Tozer writes, "Just remember, sin is man's doing. Because it is man's doing, it has a limit to it. Grace is God's doing; and because it is God's doing, it has no limit to it whatsoever." God's grace for us is infinite and boundless. God has demonstrated His love for us and it is greater than I could ever even fathom. All I can do is stand in awe and worship inside the freedom that such unimaginable love radiates. That grace is available to every single one of us. Isn't that amazing?

Knowing Jesus, especially during difficult or challenging seasons has brought a transformational joy and freedom to my life. All of our sin is finite. Our lives are finite. I look forward to the day I get to be in heaven with Jesus who's infinite atonement has covered all of our sin, breaking its chains so we could all be set free.

As you go about your day today, remember the absolute freedom and joy that knowing Jesus offers you. It will literally change your life.

 

 

 

 

Light in the Darkness 

It's been such a weird time in our world. There is so much division and oppression. Since the fall of man, humans have done terrible, painful, awful, sinful things to each other and it will never stop until Jesus comes back and we are in heaven with Him. As believers, we know the battle we are in is much larger than the one we can physically see every day. I think the best thing we can possibly do is pray and love one another as God loves us. The love of God is still and will always be the light in the darkness.

All Things New Available Now On Digital Platforms! 

So excited to announce that All Things New is now available on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify and wherever else digital music is sold and streamed! Go check it out and have a listen! Click the album cover below to head to iTunes!

 

Sunshine and Love 

Summer has landed in So Cal even if its not official yet. The weather has been beautiful and sunny every day and we have been outside working, eating and playing as much as possible. I am absorbing as much vitamin D as I can and it feels awesome to be out of the house! Even the mood in the neighborhood seems to have lifted a bit and people at the grocery store aren't quite so grumpy. It's amazing what a little sunshine can do. It's bringing everything and everyone back to life even in the midst of the Covid-19 darkness.

I was watching an interview with Maya Angelou recently and she talked about the importance of being a rainbow in someone else's cloud by loving people well. I think we can all be a little bit of sunshine or even a rainbow in someone's life in the midst of this crazy, dark time by trying to love people better. We can practice breathing life into other people. Maybe we can offer some extra grace, some extra kind words, some extra hugs around the neck, a special note, a bag of groceries, a roll of toilet paper (HA!)...just some reminders that the people around you matter. When the sun is shining outside people are inspired to be more active and get out more. When the Son is shining in our lives we should be inspired to love each other more. Out of His love we love and can bring hope to others who are struggling.  Faith, hope and love always work together don't they? But the greatest of these is love...

Sending out love to all of you today! God bless you!

Jeff

The Long Pause 

How's the long pause still going for everyone? It's still so surreal to continue to be trapped in our houses especially in So Cal where the last several days the temperature has climbed to the upper 80's. Before this week the weather around here has been unusually cloudy and overcast as an almost perfect partnering to the Covid-19 gloom. It's been weird and a real bummer. Kind of like everything else going on. Anyway, the clouds have finally parted and the sun is shining hot killing off virus strands and bringing life to everyone. 

I started thinking that's the way this whole debacle can actually change things in our culture for good. Maybe as the clouds part and this lockdown ends we can all come out of our houses and shine love on people so brightly it kills off the depression, anxiety, sadness, anger, etc. this whole thing has caused. We can hold our neighbors up as everyone begins to get back to rebuilding their lives. We can give more time and support to those around us that need it. 

I have been so inspired by my friends at church communities all over the world who are pouring out love on people so intensely its changing people's hearts forever. My own family has been blessed by an outpouring of kindness and support from several of the people at the church communities I am blessed to play. It's amazing. Being treated with love and mercy changes people..it just does. I am so thankful for a Savior who is the ultimate example of grace and mercy.  I am comforted every day because He sees everything and knows everything and is in control of it all. Out of his love we love. Let's continue to be His hands and feet in the lives of others. Hope to see some of you in person real soon! Until then let's keep praying and having hope that better days are on the horizon!

 

 

 

Passion 

As we were winding up the day last night and searching for something to watch we decided to put on the Passion of the Christ. The lense we view life through gets so much clearer when we sit in the intense reality of what Jesus did for us. We know this as believers but to witness it on screen makes it resonate in a whole different way. I have only seen Passion a couple of times because it is immensely painful to watch but it really encouraged my heart today! As I prepare for Easter services this weekend I am immeasurably grateful for our Savior and that I get to know Him and commune with Him every day. 

BEST news EVER! 

 

I was hanging out with my family yesterday and we came across John Krasinki's "Some Good News' Youtube show. Complete with a back drop drawn and colored by his daughters, he announced several pieces of good news. He feels like being positive and sharing good news is so rare these days that he actually started a new show! Who'd have ever imagined that sharing good news could be so counter culture? Well I have THE BEST news ever! Jesus came to earth and put on human flesh, lived a perfect life, died and rose again to create a bridge back to God for eternity for a sinful and fallen humanity. As we prepare for Easter no matter how it looks this year---let's remember to be eternally grateful/worshipful for the sacrifice of Jesus. No matter what happens on earth our souls belong to and can rest in God.

Pray, Pray, Pray  

One of the things I am learning during this strange season is the importance of prayer. Every morning I am trying to get out of bed with the intention to be thankful and prayerful. In the middle of the coronavirus storm, Jesus is still present in our midst and capable of calming the winds and the waves that are tossing us around. Whether its the fear of the unknown, or financial burdens, or health concerns God is here and we have access to him 24 hours a day. I have found that praying in the middle of any situation that might cause me stress takes the tension away and ushers peace into my heart. That and some good ole' fashioned worship. It's my heart's connection to Jesus that really makes all the difference.  I love Hebrews 4:16 which says, "Let us then approach God's throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need."


 

Also- you can download "I Need Thee Every Hour" here for a little encouragement! Stay safe and healthy! See below.

 

 

So Close and So Far 

I was out walking the dog today and saw several of my neighbors. Everyone I would pass politely waved and then crossed to the other side of the street or sat in the car waiting for others to pass before they could get out. I went to pick up groceries and everyone was scurrying through grocery stores keeping their heads down and furiously wiping down their carts. Yesterday, I was leading worship for a practically empty room while we streamed online. I am seeing empty restaurants and gyms everywhere. What a weird feeling..this farness..its so quiet and almost creepy at times. On the other hand my family is officially getting cabin fever and our closeness is getting a little too CLOSE. HA! We are definitely making more messes and WAY more laundry. I laugh at how fickle I can be and how this coronavirusness is highlighting some areas of needed growth. That said I am still trying to sit in the middle of all of this weird craziness and be present with the Lord. I am trying to take this great opportunity whether people are near or far---to love better. I hope we can encourage each other more, maybe stop hoarding paper products, take care of our elderly and hug our loved ones. Also the sun was shining hot today...don't forget spring is coming and cold and flu season will be over! 

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