"Mountains of Free Grace" | Brian Shilts & the High Country River Drinkers

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One of my favorite playlists is a from singer-songwriter Josh Garrels. Spiritual Songs, updated regularly, is an fitting name for this collection of songs that span genre, release dates, and content. The thread pulling them all together is that they touch on Christianity in some shape or another. Kings Kaleidoscope, Hillsong United, and Sandra McCracken are alongside the likes of Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Al Green, and U2. 

I find myself drawn to this playlist often. Finding Christ in everyday “secular” artists is akin to finding amazing grace in mundane ways. 

Recently I found a gem in this playlist that led me down a rabbit-warren of obsession: The Lumber by a band called Brian Shilts & the High Country River Drinkers. 

The album? There’s No More Bastards

Since discovering this bluegrassy Americana album (Tuesday) I have listened to it in it’s fullness no less than 5 times. The lyrics again and again preach the Gospel. 

They preach grace, and grace, and grace and love. 

Take this example from song three, “I’m in Deep” 

I’m sorry old devil, this ain’t working out now that I can see what you’re all about.
All the lying and the cheating and fooling that you do ain’t no good for me, and I’m much too good for you.
See I found myself a lover and he’s sweet as a peach
He’s seen me at my worst and said that he’ll never leave. 

Or “Righteousness for Wretchedness

Take a good long lookAs the blood rolls down that war-torn, splintered crossTake a good long look – at the righerousness of Godand with his dying breath, he turned out wicked switch offand traded us
Righteousness for wretchednessHoliness for hopelessnessFaithfulness for filthinessWhat a good God 
Take a big ole drink From the fresh spring that pulses from this free man’s sideTake a big ole drink From the ocean of light that drown a harlot and raised her up a bride 

Or the beautiful title track “There’s No More Bastards

There’s ain’t no bastard anymoreThere ain’t no crooks & there ain’t no whoresBecause we’ve got a father, and a boatload of true love

Finally, soak up the goodness of the lyrics from “The Lumber” the song that first got me hooked

“Rivers of free grace, oceans of free grace that have broken down every dam. Wild plains of free grace, canyons of free grace, mountains of free grace, now cover all these lands.”

I hope these lyrics bring you warmth and comfort today, I pray you feel loved and forgiven.  Let the Gospel begin it’s good work in you. 

 The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.

1 Timothy 1:15


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