Resurrection musician Dan Fager set Isaiah 4:2-6 to music for this year’s Easter Vigil reading of the passage. We interviewed him about the process and what it was like to share it with the Resurrection family. You can listen to a recording of the song below as well. If you like what you hear and read, be sure to join Dan and his friends at their house show this Saturday, June 2nd.
Dan Fager describes the passage that he sang at Easter Vigil—God’s Presence in a Renewed Israel—as an “espresso shot” of the hope that we have in Jesus, a way to tangibly bring into our imaginations the redemption of God’s people that will happen in the future.
It’s this same packed feeling that comes out in a lot of the songs that Dan writes, and this version of the Vigil reading, God’s Presence in a Renewed Israel, is no exception. You can hear the intimate environment in which Dan writes his music, and how it is a very personal performance of great intention.
Dan came to Resurrection in June of 2011 after moving back into the area, having graduated from Wheaton College in the spring of 2010. "There is something very tangible about Resurrection that attracted me to the church. I really liked the down-to-earth feel and the focus on Scripture."
Six months after he started to attend Resurrection, Dan joined the music team and became a regular up front. He had seen that the music ministry at Rez was of great quality and knew that he wanted to be a part of it, though he did not have much experience leading worship. None the less, Dan knew that he wanted to be involved in what happened on Sunday mornings.
Several months before Vigil, Steve Williamson, Resurrection’s Worship pastor, approached Dan to ask if he would be up for writing a song for one of the readings. After reading the passage a few times, Dan picked up his guitar and started singing. The ideas poured out of him, and having broken up the passage into three different sections, he was able to find melodies for each—one after getting some ideas from his roommate, Caleb Lindgren.
"I wanted the song for this reading be simple, yet full of power of the word of God," Dan said. He wanted to present it in a style of singing that shared the passage with clarity, yet wrapped in a beautiful melody.
"This reading is about the hope and joy that we have as Christians—that in the future God will redeem His people. As I read the passage, I felt a strong sense of desire for that day to come, and a gladness that there is a certainty that it is indeed coming."
Being on both the drama team and the music team, singing this song was a chance for Dan to recenter amidst the busyness and focus on the Lord. "When I played it at the Vigil, it felt like I was back in my room, with just my voice and my guitar."
"I wanted this song to be a gift for the congregation of Resurrection," Dan said. "At the end of it all, the song came out of a place I can’t just access at will. It was gift to me from the Lord so that I could give it back to the church as a tangible image of hope."
Story by Robb Robins
Click here to listen to "God's Presence in a Renewed Israel"
Click here to download "God's Presence in a Renewed Israel"
Click here for details on Dan's house show this Saturday, June 2nd.
God's Presence in a Renewed Israel
Isaiah 4:2-6 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)