Music and the Gospel: “Hearts on Fire,” Gavin James

Some relationships bring out the best in us; they teach us compassion and forgiveness. Other relationships challenge our values and perceptions of who we are and what we want. Gavin James’ song “Hearts on Fire” is about relationships and the challenges that occur when we’re pulled in different directions.

Key lines: Strangers in my head / Keep making me forget / Where I came from…/ There’s madness in eyes / We’re too blind to realize / Just what we’ve done… / I feel it taking a hold / I feel a rush in my bones / For you / I think we’re caught in a fight / Can we make it alright / With all these shadows on our backs / How can we take it back and / How can we love with our hearts on fire

Questions: What values do you look for in relationships? When has a relationship challenged you? How did you resolve the challenges? What keeps you centered when facing the demands of others? What does loving someone mean?

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Current Music and the Gospel: Follow My Feet and the 1st Sunday of Lent

When Jesus encounters the devil in the desert, he must choose either to give into people’s popular ideas of the messiah, which the devil represents, or to do what he knows is right from the scriptures. While rarely as dramatic as what Jesus faced, we face difficult choices every day. “Follow My Feet” is a song about the challenges of following our consciences and doing what is right.

Key Lines: And the high road’s steady and steep / And the low road’s easy and deep / Guess I’ll follow, follow, follow my feet / Guess I’ll follow, follow, follow my feet

Questions: What tempts you by seeming to be easier than doing what is right? Who do you trust to be a good example for your life? How do you describe what conscience is? When is it easy or hard to listen to your conscience? What challenges do you face this Lent? How does the tradition of “giving something up” for Lent help you face temptations?

Current Music and the Gospel: “Good Girl,” Carrie Underwood

Gospel Reflection for February 17, 1st Sunday of Lent: Carrie Underwood’s song “Good Girl” is about how tempting even a bad relationship can be. In this Sunday’s gospel, Jesus faces his own temptations at the hands of the devil. The temptations we face are different for each person, but the resolve to remain strong is something we all can ask Jesus to help us with.

Key Lines: His lips are dripping honey/But he’ll sting you like a bee/So lock up all your love and/Go and throw away the key/Hey good girl/Get out while you can/I know you think you got a good man

Questions: Why do things that are not good for us attract us? What is tempting about a relationship you know is no good? Are the things that tempt you always bad? How are temptations like lies? If you were in Jesus’ place in this Sunday’s gospel, what do you think the devil would show you to tempt you? What helps you say no to things that are wrong or not good for you?