November 14, 2014
Recording I Love Your Presence was a tough process for Darren and I. It’s ironic, because it’s our most well known and well used song (to date). There’s nearly 20 versions of this song on iTunes. We recorded it a couple of times back in the day since we wrote the song together when we were dating, about 15 years ago now. That’s another story (Which you can read here). But the reason it was hard to record for me, was because I wanted it to be fresh and an authentic moment and heart felt.. but we’ve sung it so many times and it’s been recorded by some amazing people. It almost felt a bit silly for little old us to be doing a version of it again. All I could hear in my ears were other people’s fabulous versions. It took us a long time to find the arrangement we liked and to feel the song was ours to sing again. But although it was a tough song to approach, we had one of the most significant moments of the record when we were recording it live with our guys.
We were on the third take or something all set up together in a room and it was the end of the day and something happened. The best way I can describe it is that I was caught up in a day dream whilst singing the song. I kept thinking about the presence of God and I was imagining feeling God for the first time. Not just when you get a sense of Him or have a reminder of Him or the thought of Him, but the tangible heavy awareness – a feeling and a knowledge in your whole being of His presence. I was really moved as His presence did come into the room and for me it had been a long time since I’d had an encounter with the Holy Spirit like that. Sort of like I didn’t want to move because it was special and important and Holy. It was Jesus walking the studio with us and coming up in my face and weaving thoughts through my mind as I sang. He was With us.
Do you know how that feels? Not a wishy washy ushy gushy thing, the real deal deep and profound presence of God. The kind of thing that makes you write a song like this, and the kind of thing that makes lots of people want to sing it.
At the end of the song I had these words come to me and I sang them out, finding a tune as I considered what I’d do if Jesus (in the flesh) was before me, right there in the room, what would I do??????? What WILL I do?????
Oh Lord Jesus Oh Lord, I’ll weep at your feet, and You’ll cover me, with Love.
Truly guys I think I’d fall in a heap at His feet, get as low to the ground as I could but as close as I dare.. to this One that is so mysterious and majestic to me yet so familiar and close all at the same time. This one who knows me inside out. This One who I cannot hide from, This One who reaches out into my heart and guts and holds me firm and tight and strong as I fall limp and weak into His strength.
And in those words and that heart cry I was like Ruth at the feet of Boaz being symbolically covered by his blanket and secured into his care and grafted into the line of Jesus. I was the whore at Jesus’s feet, who wept tears on them and wiped them off with her hair – making a scandalous spectacle in a room full of religious people, she served him with all she had, her heart and her tears – and he didn’t reject her or tell her to pull herself together, he received her love and accepted her. He didn’t tell her it wasn’t enough, that she wasn’t bringing enough, He received her worship. She was covered in His love.
So anyway. We had a moment there. Hopefully that explains the line of the song that isn’t technically in the song. Afterwards we were all kind of aware that something special had happened in the room and it wasn’t just me in my head, we all felt Him and knew that we had to use that take. Darren and I were just so grateful that He was WITH us in this new project.. it was like He gave us this song and our ‘worship DNA’ all over again.