In exactly five months, Christmas will be here, and so I thought today was the perfect excuse to give you a sneak peek of one of the songs from my upcoming Christmas record.
The idea driving the project was to write songs either to or from key characters in the Christmas narrative, looking for a way into the story through those who lived it. After time spent reflecting on the part each of them played, I listened–curious about what they might tell me about themselves and even what they might tell me about me. My time spent with them was rewarding, and in their stories I saw my own story surface repeatedly. That’s how it works, isn’t it? We find we are never all that different from one another—no matter where or when we come from.
I had several ideas for the story of the wise men, but one day when Joel Hanson and I were working on an entirely different song, I started noodling around, playing this little guitar progression that seemed to be asking for our attention. We followed it and it led us to this song.
It didn’t feel like a Christmas song, and that’s what I loved about it. Sometimes I think a Christmas record can feel like it’s not a real record, like it’s an artist’s side project. Early on I knew that I wanted this to feel like a real record with real songs, and as “Easier” started to unfold, I loved that it felt, in my estimation, like a real song.
It was the first one written for the record, and also one of the last to get done. After a strong start, I ended up writing pages and pages and pages of lyrics for the middle section, looking for just the right thing. There were times I despaired over it and many times I wondered about abandoning it altogether. But after many hours and many, many drafts, I’m grateful for what it is. I also love what everybody involved gave to it, making it one of my personal favorites on the record. I hope you like it!
I imagine a growing uneasiness as the wise man gets closer to his destination. They have come bearing gifts for the newborn King. But are these the gifts that the child would most desire? Might he wish for something more precious than gold, frankincense, and myrrh? He receives and honors all gifts, of course. But he also honors the gift giver by counting them as greater than any gift they could bring.
Easier (Song of The Wiseman)
Jason Gray and Joel Hanson
It’s easier to give a gift of gold
Than to give my heart for another to hold
It’s easier to give you the things I do
Than to open my life and let you walk through
Do I hide behind my offerings
While you’re hoping for the heart of me?
Am I the only gift
That you long for me to give?
The weary wisdom of broken men
Says it’s only the fool who rushes in
Only the fool
So it’s easier to give you only a part
Than risk giving away my whole heart
It’s easier, yeah, easier
Overcome by innocence
My wisdom becomes foolishness
Before the tiny babe
Born to give himself away
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming!
With glowing hearts by his cradle we stand
Fall on your knees
Fall on your knees
The conqueror comes in peace
Only a child could heal the wound
Of the fear that keeps me away from you
Only a child, only a child
He was only a child, only a child
Jason Gray is a recording artist with Centricity Records. His latest single, out now, is "When I Say Yes".
Wonderful! Thank you.
Beautiful. I’m glad this song made it to completion. So much respect for all the time and care you put in your writing… It shows. : ) Can’t wait to hear the rest!
My heart needed a Jason Gray song this morning. Thank you for sharing.
Peace…this song offers peace for the heart that gives. Beautiful job Jason, shows that you are remaining true to your calling and your gift is giving, we the recipients reminders, hope and a certain expectancy of HIS return. Thanks for early Christmas gift in this preview! Love you brother!
I agree with all of the above. This really spoke to my heart this morning and I am so grateful to God for you, and the music He gifts for you to sing and share with the rest of the world. God has used you and the music he gives you, for healing in my life. Forever grateful.
Wonderful. I am eager for the record to come out. When will it be for sale?
Wow! I love Jason Gray writing, and I love Christmas songs (the really true ones anyway), so my expectations were high going into this, but I was surprised and, admittedly, slightly mind-blown by this song! I definitely agree with your description of how this song works, and I’m gladdened by the way it doesn’t sound like ‘just another Christmas album,’ or even ‘just another collection of (mostly)original songs about the characters in the Christmas story.’ Well said, and well done.
How beautiful…both the song and the surrendered heart I hear in your music. I love introducing family and friends to your music – they are always so captivated! This song demonstrates that Christmas music is every day music! Thank you for sharing your gift with us. You are a blessing to the body of Christ!
I enjoyed this song and look forward to the album. I love the meaningful lyrics that are in your songs! Thanks for sharing this today.
This is great Jason. Thanks for the preview. We can’t wait for the album.
Thank you. wonderful. awesome. I LOVE this song. When do we get to hear the rest? A perfect gift to me this morning. Thank you Jason. Thank you God.
Jason thank you for yet another beautiful song. It is obvious that God has blessed you with great ability thanks for letting the spirit move you and use you. Your ministry is a blessing to many.
I absolutely love every song I have heard you sing, and have to say I truly hear the Lord speak to me through each one. Thank you for allowing God to use you in such a great and mighty way.
I really like this song and the growing unease of the wiseman comes through strong. I like this because it approaches the Christmas story completely outside of the “Holiday” atmosphere and brings it in once the message is fully delivered. I look forward to the rest of this album!
Thank you so very much for peeling back the curtain and talking about how you conceived, laboured, floundered, and then finished this song. I recently gave up resisting song writing and have been stumbling in the dark. Your thoughts, steps, and feelings on the process of writing this is so illuminating. Thank you.
Now you’ve made the wait even more unbearable. I want this CD now!
An everyday song for an everyday gift WE are given. I love the perspective…ohh, and the strings!
I appreciate so very much the ways you use the gifts God has given you to bring praises to Him in song. Music affects our spirits as it pulses through our emotions. Your works lead us closer to Him, and urge our hearts to open more to Him. The opening verses of this beautiful song, “Easier”, put us face-to-face with what our LORD desires from us most — our hearts.
P.S. Would the sheet music for this song be available before Christmas?
! Wow. Good job. This is one of those songs that makes me need to write my own songs… and one of those songs that tells me none of my own songs could possibly measure up. And I’m grateful for that, because I know that each one of those “one of those songs” adds to the lifesong that is slowly building up in me. One day I’ll be able to sing it, and one day it might “measure up,” but for now I can only rejoice in the bits and pieces like this.
Wow, that is a strong song!!
Very. Well. Done. Thank you for sharing of yourself and the song. It is most definitely a REAL song. Merry Christmas, today and every day!
“So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming!
With glowing hearts by his cradle we stand
Fall on your knees
Fall on your knees
The conqueror comes in peace”
I listened to this song four times just now and every time it was THESE lyrics that caught me and pulled me in.
I very much enjoy your writing. It made me a fan long before I heard a note of your music. I’m very glad I stumbled across you! Excellent albums and thank you for the preview!
That was great! It was beautiful and I am so looking forward to the official release.
An absolutely brilliant piece of music Jason. Can’t wait for this release! Thank you!
This brought sweet calm to my heart on a hot summer day. It appears your album will be much like Behold the Lamb of God…one that we will enjoy all year long. I will be so happy to add it to the mix!
sounds amazing, cant wait for it to be releases
Well done . So looking forward to the rest .
Such beautiful lyrics, and I love the arrangement too! Opening one’s life and heart to Christ is often one of the hardest things to do in life, and you nailed it with these lyrics. I know this will easily become my favorite Christmas album, and I am excited to hear the rest of it… thanks so much for the preview to whet our appetites!!
Outstanding Jason! I am excited to get the whole Christmas Album! Great Pic by Taya too!
Jason, your songs always touch my heart. The words to this song really make you
think. Thank you for giving us songs that we play in our heads and minister to our soul.
Really love this song. Can’t wait for the album.
I loved this song, anxious to buy the album. These are the songs that I love to hear at Christmas instead of the “holiday classics” that you hear on the radio.
Wow! I am in tears. Loved how you blended in Oh, Holy Night into the melody of the song. Can’t wait for the release!
Jason… upon listening to a song for the first time, I’ve smiled, I’ve laughed and I’ve sighed, but very rarely, if ever, have I cried. This song brought tears to my eyes.
This song is definitely so very you, and it just so happens to minister to me right in this very moment, as I scramble to pull together gifts of stones and spices for my Lord, and become very tried in the doing.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for persevering through the drafts and the doubts to remind me that my Beloved is only “hoping for the heart of me.”
It’s fitting that the writings that almost don’t make it into the album are the ones that catapult heavy boulders at the walls in my life. Although I rest and celebrate in the safety of God’s hand and promises, it’s people that I tend to keep the gates locked against. The opening verse has really hit home…
Christmas in July. How wonderful!
Dear Jason, this song is very moving. I am so glad that God gave you such a wonderful gift. You are such a blessing and my whole family listens to your music. Thank you accepting God’s gift of a wonderful voice. It inspires me a lot. Thank you so much! You’re awsome! God bless you.
Jason, this is so beautiful! Thank you for giving us a sneak-peak into your new Christmas album. Look forward to adding it to my Jason Gray collection!
Dang, Jason. I didn’t know what to expect when I read the lead-in to this, but as usual, you cut right to the heart of the matter of the heart.
Love this, Jason. I’m really anticipating your Christmas album, and wondering what the chances of you singing this at your August 5th concert in MN are… : )
Truly a song for all seasons not just Christmas. Lovely.
This is wonderful. So looking forward to adding this album to my not-so-Christmas-y collection.
Thanks Jason, it’s just so soothing listening to you sing this song, I love it, look forward to the album. May God bless you and let His light continue to shine through you.
Jason, thank you for this song. It has tied into a theme of a work the Lord is doing anew in my heart to stop just giving him the things I do but rather “open my life and let Him walk through.” I listened to this just after pre-ordering the Proprietor’s new project and heard similar echoes in “Break It All the Way.” Thanks to you both for being his voice to continue seeking total abandonment and brokenness before Him.
Thank you Jason and Joel, for this lovely song.
Thank you for persevering with it – what a wonderful gift to your King, and His children.
Thank you Lord for every song that Jason sings.
May Jason truly know how much You delight in his heart; his heart that he has given to you.
God bless you Jason xxxxxx
If you have a Rabbit Room account, log in here to comment.