Song of the Day: Andrew Osenga

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This is the song that made me an Andrew Osenga fan.  It’s almost unbearably honest, so beautiful, so contrite. It expresses so eloquently the way I’ve felt in the wake of sin that I have more than once muttered this song as my best prayer for forgiveness and help.  On this note, have a great weekend and be thankful that you are loved.

TOO FAR TO WALK  (from the album Photographs)

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus
I did what I planned to do
And I feel like I knew I would feel
Now I want to come back to You

My mind is thick and it’s dirty
My heart, it ran to hide
My plans proved I don’t know what I’m doing
Cause I used to feel alive

[Chorus]
There’s an angel on my left shoulder
And ten devils on my right
Jesus, you’ll have to come get me
Cause it’s too far to walk tonight

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus
How can I explain
These promises scattered
‘Round the floor by the bed
Like dinner clothes after a date

I get scared that forgiveness
Is for better people
So I give up trying to fight
Jesus, you’ll have to come get me
Cause it’s too far to walk tonight

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus
How precious is that name
And while you’re forgiving
I’m sorry I forget
That you came for sinners to save

[Chorus]
There’s an angel on my left shoulder
And ten devils on my right
Jesus, you’ll have to come get me
Cause it’s too far to walk tonight

Profile photo of Andrew Peterson

As a singer-songwriter and recording artist, Andrew has released more than ten records over the past fifteen years. His music has earned him a reputation for writing songs that connect with his listeners in ways equally powerful, poetic, and intimate. He has also followed his gifts into the realm of publishing. His books include the four volumes of the award-winning Wingfeather Saga.


19 Comments

  1. Profile photo of Curt McLey

    Curt McLey

    @curtmcley

    Hearing the “Song of the Day” feature reminds me of how grateful I am for these great artists. I think it’s cool how God sort of cherry picks (don’t look for the phrase “cherry picks” in your concordance) believers from the Church with whom to bestow huge talent. These folks aren’t just good. They are truly excellent. And they are all friends, seem to like each other, and are as gracious as one could hope to expect in a world in which envy and greed simmer on the stove, ready to boil over at any time (In my head, I just heard the movie trailer voice-over guy narrate that last sentence) . The Pegs are quite diverse in their respective styles, yet the quality and excellence comes through from each artist. I count it as a blessing of the highest order to know and live with their work, which has become such an integral part of my life.

    It’s hard to believe that it’s been five years ago, but I remember chatting with A.O. at a BTLOG show–the one at Belcourt Theatre–and shortly thereafter writing a review about the first version of Photographs (for those that may not know, there are two versions), which was just being released. This “snapshot” confessional is written from the perspective of a believer whose deliberate sin has gotten the better of him and the resultant pain and regret is palpable. The line “I get scared that forgiveness is for better people, so I give up trying to fight, Jesus you’ll have to come get me, cause it’s too far to walk tonight,” is awesome in its unmitigated candor.

    Then the guy turns around are writes songs like “After the Garden” and “Santa Barbara,” no holds barred, kick-tush rock and roll. For a guy with so many irons in the fire and so prolific, one might forgive him if the quality started to fall a tad, but the guy just keeps cranking out great work.

  2. Chris Hubbs

    I do so love this song. I find it pairs nicely with another cut from the record: When Will I Run. This is the more brokenhearted lament; WWIR is the slightly more self-aware reminder to one’s self: “the prodigals are still Your sons.” Such amazing stuff.

  3. Ben

    Love this song, but how could you skip the “Ls…” like Allen Levi:)…or will you come back to other letters???

  4. Tony Heringer

    “I love Andy”

    That’s a quote from my daughter at a Caedmon’s Call show here in Suwanee, GA. The more I hear of Andy’s music, I’d have to agree.

    His vocals on “Hold The Light” (co-written with the Room’s own Randall Goodgame) on the last CC album are some of the most penetrating I’ve ever heard. Andy describes this song in Christianty Today as “the prime example for how deeply that honest community can affect us.” I concur.

    Coupled with our song of the day and I agree Barilman, these are fine prayers to recite daily if not minute by minute.

  5. Mike

    I saw Andy with AP and he did this song. I immediately bought the album. This too made me an Andy fan. Thanks for posting it

  6. Andy G

    I first listened to AO’s Photographs when I was driving alone back home from Arkansas. By the time I hit the West side of Memphis – I heard this song for the first time. I spent the next hour or so leaning forward on the steering wheel and hitting repeat on the CD player. I kept listening until I knew every word so that I could sing along with him and make it my own. It was like all of Osenga’s life experiences, triumphs and failures intersected with my own in that song. There were no words that I could change to make it more true or applicable in my own life.
    Even thought I didn’t know Osenga quite as well back then, I had to call him immediately and thank him for writing this song. In the times when things are too desperate and dark to describe – it is good to know that there are writers like Osenga out there who can paint a picture that helps me understand … and heal.
    I feel like I need to say something funny now.

    LOL

    (that was it. I don’t seriously use that stuff.)

  7. easton crow

    Oh dear. Between Jason Gray’s song the other day and this one you have really hit me and hit me hard. I feel like I have been in this place so many times. Why is it so easy to delberately say, “I know this is wrong, but I am going to do it anyway”? Thank you for helping me to say what is in my heart that I can’t get out.

  8. Micah

    “I feel like I knew I would feel”

    Its so true, when we make the deliberate decision to sin, we always know how we’re going to feel afterwards. And yet, we still go ahead and do it. I don’t understand why, but we all do it.

    Oh, Andy O is the man.

  9. josh

    Too Far to Walk is one of the songs I like, but haven’t fallen in love with yet. My favorite on Photographs is We Were So Sure We Would Change The World. That’s the one that made me hit repeat over and over.

  10. elijah

    For the record, while this song is great, “New Mexico” tears me up. That line about why the martyrs died is fierce.

  11. elijah

    Oh, and “Kara” is also sublime. I’ve also heard rumors of a sequel to said song written by none other than our Proprietor, a song that made AO cry at first listen.

  12. josh

    I’ve heard about that too… I’d love to at least get to read the lyrics or something… I wonder if Mr. Peterson would be into posting them at any point… Pretty please…

  13. Ron Davis

    Shortly after “Photographs” (the first version) was released, Eric Peters INSISTED that I buy it. I picked it up at a New City Cafe show, and it literally spent the next month in my CD player. This song is just a sample of how amazing that CD is.

    Before I had a car charger for my iPod, I kept “Photographs” in the car console. That way, if my iPod battery died, I’d have the CD with me. One time my iPod battery died, so I put on “Photographs.” I was so captured by “Photographs” – even after having the CD for a long time – that I didn’t charge my iPod for another 4 days.

  14. becky

    Wow. I love the lyrics for this song. I have recently finished reading Saint Julian, so I’m feeling kind of bombarded with conviction about the nature of sin and the awesome greatness of mercy and redemption. This song expresses so perfectly that dilema that Paul talks about: that we know what is good and don’t do it, and what we don’t want to do, we end up doing. And so often I find myself making a deliberate choice to sin. I’m grateful my redemption is not up to me, because I would never get there.

    “My plans proved I don’t know what I’m doing
    Cause I used to feel alive ”

    I really like this sentence. It makes me think of my favorite passage of Scripture, which is Psalm 103. “He satisfies my desires with good things, so that my youth is renewed like the eagle.” I spend so much time trying to satisfy my own desires, but it only leaves me feeling empty, old, and dead inside. Only God can really fill up my soul, and make me feel new and alive.

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