Songwriters often describe how a favorite track seemed to "write itself."

Other songs don’t come so easily. Just ask Joseph Rojas, front man for Seventh Day Slumber.

While working on the band’s new alt-rock praise album, Rojas was asked to write three original songs that would be radio-worthy. So, he grabbed a few verses from the Book of Psalms and threw together some standard chords, but "everything came out just horrible," Rojas said.

"When I left the room, God spoke to me in my heart — not audibly, in my heart — and said, ‘Is that all you have for me? Aren’t I the same God who delivered you from a $400-a-day cocaine addiction, the same God who gave you a beautiful wife and kids?’" Rojas said. "I decided that I wasn’t going to write a song for the record label, or the radio or even the churches. I was going to write a song for the God who saved my life."

The result was the album’s title track, "Take Everything," a song that movingly describes the struggle of giving everything to God.

Another of the album’s original songs is "Carry Me."

"It’s just a song about someone who’s made a lot of mistakes in life," Rojas said. "Even as a Christian, you do things that are embarrassing and you know you’ve let God down and people down. ‘Carry Me’ is about just saying you’re sorry."

The album also includes nine familiar praise-and-worship songs set to some very unfamiliar — but invigorating — music.

Award-winning songs, such as "How Great Is Our God," "I Can Only Imagine," "Famous One" and "Nothing But the Blood," received some very heavy treatment, something Seventh Day Slumber didn’t take lightly.

"For us to go back and do them in our own way was a scary thing," Rojas said.

However, he saw recasting the songs as an important task because of his own background.

"That’s one we knew had to be done because we owe God so much for us in our lives," Rojas said. "We always wanted to do an album that was just worship."


"The truth is that I should be dead right now or in prison ... Instead I have the opportunity to make music."

Today’s Praise is a roundup of news and reviews from the contemporary Christian music industry.

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