10 Questions With Don Moen
- Wednesday, March 19, 2003
Songs4Worship: What has been the greatest challenge you've faced since you began pursuing music as a calling and a career?
Don Moen: Balancing my time is probably the biggest challenge. Balancing my work in the office and my role as a father, husband and songwriter has been a great challenge, and it's tougher now that my children are older. When children are younger, they need food, home and a bath, but as they grow older, they start school and need help with their homework and start driving cars. That's one of the reasons I say no to a lot of things. You only have your kids once. When people ask me if they can pray for me, I ask them to pray that I have balance in my life.
S4W.com: What has been the most profound lesson you've learned about worship over the past few years?
Moen: There were quite a few years when I was first doing praise and worship music when people would laugh at it and say, "That's not music-that's not serious." Only in the last few years has praise and worship music become a genre. Major artists are now doing worship records and they're starting to become their best ones. So only recently has praise and worship come to be recognized as a very significant category, and it's almost the only category in Christian music that is still showing solid growth. For many years it wasn't like that, though, so it was always a challenge to gain recognition without compromising integrity.
S4W.com: What is the most profound lesson you've learned about life over the past few years?
Moen: Be yourself, no matter what it is you do. Many times people try to be someone they're not. I'm a ballad singer, and I don't have hot licks like some artists. My kids would not call my songs "cool," but the most valuable lesson I've learned is to be happy and comfortable with who God made me to be. I think it's so easy to get caught up in the production and presentation of something and to not ask the hard questions, like "Why am I doing what I'm doing?" We should all analyze what we do everyday and say, "Why did we do what we just did."
S4W.com: What does "worship lifestyle" mean to you?
Moen: First of all, it means that worship is more than a song. It's important to remember that music is just one facet of worship. To me, worship lifestyle means being the same person at home and the same person in the supermarket that I am on the stage. It means following the example of Jesus, who was the Son of God, but was also the Son of Man. Jesus was approachable, and people loved to be around him. Just ask yourself, "Was Jesus a true worshiper?" You bet he was.
S4W.com: How do you explain the powerful connection between music and worship expression?
Moen: First of all, music is such a powerful tool for bringing people together. For instance, one song can be sung around the world in different languages and have the same meaning, so why not use the beauty and the power of music to facilitate the worship of God? Look at history-Bach and Handel were the songwriters of the church.
Music also has the ability to tear down barriers. I've seen the power of song bring congregations and denominations together when the greatest sermon could not. It's hard to stay angry with someone when you sit next to him and experience God's presence through song.
S4W.com: What compels you to write new songs?
Moen: I never feel compelled to write songs. I mean, I feel it a little now because there's a deadline (laughs). Seriously, though, I do try to be faithful and sit at the piano and ask, "God, what do you want me to say?" Because it is a gift that I have been given, when there is a need, my first response is to address it musically. For instance, when I wrote "God Will Make A Way," I didn't really feel compelled to write it, but I wanted to know what to say to ease the pain of a lost loved one, and my first response was to write a song.
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