Why I write music

There are many whys.

The first why must be God. He has given me a love of music and a desire to create it. Indeed, I feel that even the music I create is itself a gift from him to me. 

When I compose, I am meeting with God. I don't mean that in a proud sense, intimating that my music is better than anyone else's because it is "from God" or that I am destined for greatness because my music is "divine."

I mean that I find communion with him when I compose. I feel close to him. I feel loved by him. I feel alive and full of joy. In fact, I find myself focusing much more on the time I spend with God than with any implication that may come from that.

Considering my music as a gift from God has had rather the opposite effect to the things I mentioned earlier. I don't think my music is better than anyone else's. Comparing my music to other music makes less sense than it did, and does not seem productive or enjoyable. 

Far from thinking myself destined for greatness, I think less and less about music as a career. Judging by normal standards my ambitions for my music seem pathetic. My desire for fame has withered. I don't feel that I need to make my living off of music, and I don't. I am satisfied to be an amateur (that was not always the case). 

That is where my music comes from, or what caused it. Another question is: what is it for?

My music is for bringing other people peace and joy, and for bringing God glory. It is for sharing the peace and joy God has given me with others, which adds to my joy. 

This is something that I understood by intuition for awhile, but it was confusing in practice because I was still focused on things other than enjoying what God has given me and being thankful for it. Before, I couldn't be satisfied unless I was a making a living off my music. My joy rose and fell with what people thought of my music.

This was a trap. I knew that the purpose of my music was to give people peace and joy, but I had none myself to give them. It makes more sense now. The peace and the joy must come from God, who has enough. 

I think of myself as a tier of a fountain now. God is the spring. The good that comes to me from God is far too much for me to hold, so it flows out of me into other people. I seek to be ever giving, yet ever full. I have found these verses to be true.

One person gives freely, yet gains even more. Another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. The generous man prospers. Whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.

Proverbs 11:24-25

Because my music is for the good of others, I want to organize it in a way that will serve that purpose. At the moment, having all my music available for free is the best way to reflect that. I don't know of a better way to be generous, other than to be the one to take the first step.

I don't want your email address. I don't want to trade my music for your information. Trades don't seem interesting to me. Gifts, on the other hand, are fascinating. In order for it to be a gift, it's important that you don't have to trade anything for it.

There is a way to exchange gifts that is not a trade, but I'm not sure how to explain that. I think for most people, having my music available for free is what I want. I don't want barriers between you and my music. I want you to hear it. I want it to be my gift to you. 

You can see that I cannot have this and also make a living with music, or at least it seems unlikely. This is not at all how the music industry works, and I understand that I will not succeed in that industry. That's ok. 

For the people who do find me, I want you to know that I love you, and I write my music for you. If I think of my music as a place, I think it would be a quiet meadow in a forest, where you could find rest from the noise and the troubles of the world, a place where you could slow down and find joy in the beauty that God has made, a place where you could come and bask in the love that God has for you.

And when you leave, you leave refreshed, full of hope and vigor. That is the kind of place that I want to create through the music God has given me and the labor that I put into crafting it with the desire and skill he has also given me. I think that is a place worth creating.