Are you telling or asking?

I was chatting with my pastor about the changes to the Mass. We are both fans of the new wording. He brought up how he really liked the way the prayers are worded now, that they are much more asking God for His mercy, rather than telling Him to send it to us. I like that too. Funny thing I had started to have that same issue with many songs. Phrases like “Give me”, “Take from me”, “Send to me” can give a song a sense of entitlement rather than a request. Maybe a “please” could go a long way. I know I may be splitting hairs, but when you sit in quiet trying to pray with the music as the soundtrack to your plea, every word can take on weight. As song writers, we need to keep that in mind. Words matter. I am well aware that lyrics like “Send us Your Spirit” are meant as a request, and not a demand, but I’d like to see it a bit more obvious. Just like the wording changes in the Mass to make sure the meanings are not hidden, but brought to light, we need to make sure our lyrics express the full meaning intended.

I’d like to know if it’s just me, or you too have thought about this. Or maybe you are a song writer who’s given this topic some thought. I’d like to hear your thoughts. I’m going to try and share my thoughts on topics like this from time to time, and it’s only fair you get your say on the matter too.

(quick note, most of the comments now get marked as pending so I can try and weed out the spam. I will get to moderating the comments as quick as I can, and all opinions are welcome. Ads for all kinds of junk are not.)

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