by Emily Medlock
Welcome back to Behind the Lyrics! Today, we’re going to talk about one of the most upbeat guys in the music industry. Andy Grammer is always full of positive lyrics and beats. His new album, Naïve, released July 26, is no exception. However, there is one song on the album that speaks of growth, happiness, and love in a way you’d never expect.
While Andy Grammer isn’t a “Christian” artist, it’s easy to see Christ move through his lyrics. From songs about faithfulness like “Honey, I’m Good” and “Fresh Eyes” to songs about never giving up like “Keep Your Head Up” and of course, “Never Give Up.” He also is a big believer in saving yourself for marriage, something not many celebrities will admit to, regardless of their personal life.
Now back to our song “Wish You Pain.” Take a look at these lyrics and just see what you can gain from this!
I hope your doubts come like monsters
And terrorize your dreams
Now, this is quite a way to start a song. When you hear these lyrics, you’ll probably be turned off by their darkness. However, try not to fret. This opening sets the mood of the song. Andy is wishing you, me, and loved ones.
But why? Because those who do not doubt can never meet God. Our doubt leads us to God, the truth and light. Psalms 42:11 says, “Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” And again, Jude 1:22 simply states, “Be merciful to those who doubt.” These lyrics wish mercy on us.
I hope you feel the lonely hopelessness
‘Cause no one else believes
I hope you question whether you ever really had a chance at all
A few months back, I did an article on “God Only Knows,” which was just released again in Spanish. This song goes in-depth on this point. Again, if we never feel that pang of loneliness, can we ever convince ourselves that we need God? That lost job, that bad breakup, that broken home. These are the things that cause us to feel lonely and lost. But where is there to go from there? Questioning our beliefs is the only way to stand for them, even when the world, and everyone we know, stands against them.
I hope your fear is thick like poison
It gets into your blood
I hope you push until you cannot breathe
And it’s still not enough
I hope you put your life out on the line
And everybody watches while you fall
Andy continues these torments and trials in this verse. In James 1:2-4, you’ll read, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”
‘Cause I love you more than you could know
And your heart, it grows every time it breaks
I know that it might sound strange
Andy Grammer admits that this song is written from a parent’s perspective. Now what better perspective than that of our Holy Father? Romans 8:17-18, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.”
But I wish you pain
Wish you pain
It’s hard to say
But I wish you pain
There’s a long quote from a Bahá’í spiritual teacher that we can gain enlightenment from, “The more difficulties one sees in the world the more perfect one becomes. The more you plough and dig the ground the more fertile it becomes. The more you cut the branches of a tree the higher and stronger it grows. The more you put the gold in the fire the purer it becomes. The more you sharpen the steel by grinding the better it cuts. Therefore, the more sorrows one sees the more perfect one becomes. That is why, in all times, the Prophets of God have had tribulations and difficulties to withstand. The more often the captain of a ship is in the tempest and difficult sailing the greater his knowledge becomes. Therefore I am happy that you have had great tribulations and difficulties. For this I am very happy — that you have had many sorrows. Strange it is that I love you and still I am happy that you have sorrows.”
Of course, this quote is based on 2 Corinthians 12:9, which reads, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
I hope people break their promises
Leave you in the cold
I hope they beat your heart to pieces
Worse than you’ve ever known
I hope you finally arrive, only to find you’re nowhere close
A broken heart can be mended by One. Only One’s promises will always remain true. This is the hardest struggle of all. The struggle of a broken heart. But if we never experience it, we can never be healed, and never know what pure love is. Like I said before in “God’s Not Done with You,” When our lives are going exactly as planned, how often do we turn to God and have a heart to heart?
I hope you cry and tears come streaming down your face
I hope this life traps you in more than you thought you could ever take
I hope the help you want never comes and you do it on your own
The words “on your own” is used loosely here. We are never alone. But when we are, that’s when God’s voice is the loudest and his help is most visible. Now, I am not condoning the focus on negativity nor watching others struggle. But sometimes, the struggle is necessary in our own lives.
I love you more than you could even know
Been here before and I just wanna see you grow
Want you to grow
God loves us more than we can ever imagine. He loves us more than we could ever love another. So why does he put us through so much? Ask anyone who has healed from a struggle they’ve been through in the past, and they will tell you they wouldn’t change a thing. It’s those who are fighting the hurdle and trying to run backwards that seek change.
‘Cause everything that matters most
That’s where it goes by a different name
I know that it might sound strange
Grammer is always one to spread a positive message, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t had any negativity in his life. In fact, he admits this was his most difficult album to write. “This was a hard, hard one to get through. My personal life and my creative world were tough,” he reveals. “I’m naturally optimistic, but we all have hard periods. I think that people that fight that fight every day, and you see them with a smile anyway, those are the real heroes. The people that show up and still somehow are able to see the positive side of things even when stuff is so bad. That’s really amazing.”
Watch the video below:
Grammer gives just one more piece of advice while listening to this song, “I know for sure that what makes people happy is when they are being of service to someone else. And I think what makes us sad is when we are overly focused on ourselves. I don’t know if there’s been a time in history where, with social media and all, that you literally can focus on yourself all day long. That would be my guess as to why it’s so hard to be happy. It’s like when you’re feeling lethargic, if you get up and go for a run, you feel better. It’s the opposite of what you want. So, when you’re unhappy, you think, oh man, I should do something for myself. I should get something tasty to eat. I should buy new clothes. I should treat myself. But the real trick is to do it for someone else. That can be hard to remember to do.”
And that’s the heart of a servant of God. Now, I’ll leave you with this note. While it’s important to focus on the positive, ignoring your “negative” feelings is also unhealthy. God gives us trials and tribulations for a reason. The sooner we accept that, the sooner we can grow from them. Because the trial ends with this acceptance. And the negative emotions turn positive when we finally allow ourselves to feel them fully.
If you have anything to add or if you have any suggestions for my next Behind the Lyrics article, let me know in the comments below!
Emily Medlock is a freelance writer who specializes in video games, movies, viral content, Christianity, music and YouTube video scripts. Visit her online at emilymedlock.com/blog.