Depressing Love Songs

They’re my favorite types of songs. By depressing, I don’t always mean sad. I just mean, if these songs were drugs they would be depressants not stimulants. Low BPM. Some of these songs aren’t actually sad so to anyone who might be reading this, don’t be turned off by the title of this post. You should be turned off if you aren’t a fan of acoustic/blue-eyed soul though. Or Coldplay.

The reason for this random post is an article that I read that led me to revisit some old habits. I’m not a fan of visual art (modern art, paintings, etc.) but I do love music and movies and plays and musicals and writing and the performing arts. I think one of the things that happened as I grew deeper in my faith throughout college was that I abandoned some of these things. It wasn’t really until senior year that I started to go to more performances and just do more fun stuff that wasn’t always PFA-related. Part of the reason for the shift was, I think, my misconception of art and the Gospel. After reading this article, I began to rethink some of that stuff.

This quote hit me the hardest and gave me something to think about:

There are many attempts to use the arts as a tool for evangelism. I understand the need to do that; but, again, it’s going back to commoditizing things. When we are so consumer-driven, we want to put price tags on everything; and we want to add value to art, as if that was necessary. We say if it’s useful for evangelism, then it has value.

And, there are two problems with that. One, it makes art so much less than what it can be potentially. But also, you’re communicating to the world that the gospel is not art. The gospel is this information that needs to be used by something to carry it.

Only, that’s not the gospel at all. The gospel is life. The gospel is about the Creator God, who is an artist, who is trying to communicate. And his art is the church. We are the artwork created in Christ Jesus to do good works. If we don’t realize that fully, then the gospel itself is truncated and art itself suffers.

The last part is a paraphrase of Ephesians 2:10. The word Paul uses for workmanship is actually the Greek word also used for artistic works. It’s the word poiema or poem. We’re God’s poems!

Anyway, after all that, here’s my list of depressing love songs in no particular order. Be warned: I have a high level of empathy. I’ve never been in love but, man!, sometimes I feel like I could have written these songs. Except I couldn’t have. Because I’m not that good at writing songs. I’m only good at raps :).

1. Someone Like You – Adele

I was driving to Target when this came on shuffle. It’s just so sad and real. It almost made me cry.

2. The Man Who Can’t Be Moved – The Script

I like this one. A song about perseverance :).

3. After the Storm – Mumford & Sons

Folksy. A lot of their music has Christian undertones though no one knows for sure if they’re a Christian band. “Love will not break your heart but erase your fears.”

4. Marry Me – Train

A hypothetical song about marriage. I just like the sound of it. The video is cute too.

5. Swallowed in the Sea – Coldplay

This song always reminds me of high school. I used to listen to it while going to and from school. It also makes me emotional but more for the sentimental value.

6. All We Ever Do Is Say Goodbye – John Mayer

7. Before the Worst – The Script

I really liked The Script’s first album and this song is one reason why.

8. Yellow – Coldplay

It was referenced in a sermon I heard today. Classic Coldplay. Some people have argued that it is about God but I don’t know if I buy that. It’s still a good song.

9. I’m Yours – The Script

This one brings me back to freshman and sophomore year at Princeton. Good song with sentimental value.

10. Dreaming With A Broken Heart – John Mayer

John Mayer. He makes such good music even though he doesn’t come off well in interviews and other stuff. And that’s why we don’t put our faith in man.

11. Gravity – Sara Bareilles

OMG I LOVE THIS SONG.

12. Green Eyes – Coldplay

One of my favorite songs, ever.

Of course this isn’t an exhaustive list. Just all the ones I could think about.

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