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'Jesus Eyes': 2011 Songwriting Winner

Loving like Jesus loves would be a lot easier if we could see people as Jesus sees them.  What a difference it would make for us – and for them – if we could see them through Jesus’ eyes. 

When someone follows Jesus like that, we begin to see Jesus in every aspect of their lives and their being. We look at their eyes, and it's clear they are letting God show them the world as our loving saviour Jesus sees it.  

It's almost as though these faithful followers have Jesus' eyes.

That’s the message behind the song Jesus Eyes, one of the first-prize winners in the DeoSound 2011 Songwriting Competition.  Jesus Eyes was a collaboration between Sean Evans, who conceived the song and wrote the lyrics, and good friend Aidan Purnell, who wrote the music.

It’s a great song to listen to, and a good reminder of how God tells us we should all view those around us.  But there’s even more to the song than that.

The story behind ‘Jesus Eyes’

Sean happened to be at a ministry conference in Midland, Michigan, where they were talking about ways to honour your pastor. Sean explained, “Loving music as I do, I was struck with the inspiration to write a song specifically for my Pastor.  Jesus Eyes was the result.”  Sean was privileged to work with his good friend Aiden 

It’s easy to tell from the words of this song that Sean’s pastor was following Jesus’ example, and his example was inspiring others to follow his lead.  Sean continued, “This song really speaks about the role of your Pastor in your life. He is put there by God to help guide you each and every day.”

That’s a very important role, but definitely not an easy one.  God tells us to honour these spiritual leaders and examples that God provides for us.  Sean notes, “The Bible speaks of the man of God being worthy of double honours.”

Sean was able to honour his pastor not only by writing the song, but by giving it to his pastor in a very personal way. “To be honest, that was what I most enjoyed about writing the whole song - just that thought of finally singing it in front of my Pastor as a surprise to him!”

Words into music: Into the recording studio

There were other benefits too.  While Sean had written a few songs before, this was the first song he got to record in a professional studio.  Sean found that experience an enjoyable challenge, “Seeing the song actually come together with the full range of instruments, having it professionally recorded, mastered, everything.  It was very exciting!”

Even though it was a lot of work, Sean still makes the whole thing sound easy, almost like the song wrote itself.  Did everything really come together that smoothly?

The song didn’t really change much from the time Sean first thought about it. Sean writes lyrics, so he works with co-writers on the melody. Sean felt privileged to collaborate on this project with his close friend Aidan Purnell, a talented composer behind the music for this track.  

But the words and melody have to come fit together like hand and glove - how did that work with co-writing?  “A few lyrics here and there were modified to fit the final melody. But the overall song is pretty much intact from when I first wrote it.”

Sean talks about why he thinks the song came together as it did, “I believe that simply because this was anointed by God to be done right from the beginning. Everything just came together very smoothly and without a hitch.”

Songs don’t always come together like that of course, but as in every other area of our lives, the very best and most satisfying paths we can ever take are those set out for us by our loving God.

What's next for Sean?

Sean looks forward to writing more songs, especially after his inspiring trip to the Songwriters' Boot Camp at the Christian Music Summit in May, 2011.  

But he’ll always remember this one. “This song is special for me because of who it was written for.  I’ll also always remember it for the fact that I was the first song I recorded in a studio. The experience was unforgettable.”

Sean very much recognizes this song as God’s gift, and he is excited to be releasing it free to the world.  Sean found that a Creative Commons license was the perfect way for Sean to share God’s gift with the world – anyone can use, sing or record the song anytime and anywhere, for any non-commercial purpose.

Sean’s hope is that the song will be used to honour other men and women of God, and inspire us all to see our neighbours through Jesus’ eyes.

We joyfully share Sean’s hopes that God will use this song to build His church.  But we also hope it will inspire Sean to continue following in his walk with God, and write and share more great music!

Sean Evans lives in Ontario Canada with three adorable daughters and one amazing wife, where he has been known to review the odd computer game when not working in his tech job.

Seeing the world through Jesus' eyes will light up your life - and give light to the world too.

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Copyright © 2006 by Sean Evans. Some rights reserved. Lyrics CC-BY-NC-ND, Music CC-BY-NC-SA, Recording CC-BY-NC-SA

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