Amen So Be It | the both and | shorts and longs | julie rybarczyk

R-boy gave me an iTunes gift card for Christmas and I’ve been spending it carefully. Funny how I can invest half an hour into choosing just one song when $1.29 at the grocery store doesn’t slow me down at all.

Anyway, I’ve still been living in a bit of a music drought, starving for songs that speak to me safely—because music does speak to me. Not a lyric goes by unabsorbed. It must come with being a word girl. I am drawn to vowels and consonants strung thoughtfully from end to end. Wrap them in a melody and I can hardly escape.

So, although I do sometimes choose my music just for the beat, or the harmonies, this week I was looking for a trail of songs that speak to where I am, right now. Who I am. Where I’ve been. And who’s been with me. Songs I would write if I could write songs. Songs about hurt, and help, and heaven, and healing, and hope. And about the friends who have walked me through it all.

I named this mix, Amen. And I don’t say that word lightly.

Amen doesn’t mean I like what’s happened this past year, or that I like everything that’s happening right now. But I guess we all know… we don’t have to like it to live it. To choose it. To feel it. To know this too shall pass. To maybe, just maybe, let it shape us.

Or, at least, to let it be. Amen.

Click the arrow above to listen for free. Here’s what you’ll hear, and why:

angel doves | mindy smith
the first line of this song punches me in the gut, the rest gives me hope

you do the same for me | dave barnes
this is a song for my friends, because they’ve done the same for me

breathe | ryan star
sometimes it’s the most important thing I do all day

mockingbird | allison moorer
in my dreams, this is how rising above looks

soldier | ingrid michaelson
the most chilling and, I do hope, most true line of this song: but it can be won

stars | everly
I do know who I am, and whose voice I’m listening for

songbird | jillian edwards
yes, yes, yes—I want to be

brighter days | leeland
are coming…

closer to love | mat kearney
another opening that makes my knees buckle, followed by glimpses of hope

amen | dave barnes
if you listen to nothing else, listen to this

auld lang syne
because friends matter, and kindness matters, for old times’ sake and for today

by julie rybarczyk


photo by charming elephant


  • Julie

    Oh wow. Thank you both for sharing – and for letting me be a part of such a lovely connection. Mother and daughter, oceans apart, but together here, for a moment in time…


  • becky

    Thank you Julie for sharing, have let the words sing over me this morning as I am missing my daughter and longing to share breath with her. Touched me deeply to scroll to the bottom of the page and find that the song that had touched me most was one that she had listened to. You were a connection between us…thank you.

  • natalie

    thanks for the songs julie. its always wonderful to hear what music speaks to another…i’m listening to mockingbird right now 🙂


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