Today I celebrate my 26 years of existence, 26 years worth of experience and memories. And what better way to celebrate them than by music? So here’s a compilation of 26 songs that I think sum up my life.
Please note that the songs are presented alphabetically.
1. AMAZING GRACE (MY CHAINS ARE GONE) – Chris Tomlin
“My chains are gone, I’ve been set free. My God, My Savior has ransomed me.”
Throughout my life, I have seen God’s amazing grace with all the blessings he has bestowed upon me. My gratefulness is summed up by this classic song.
2. BRING THE RAIN – MercyMe
“And I know there’ll be days when this life brings me pain, but if that’s what it takes to praise You, Jesus, bring the rain.”
I’ve been through many downfalls in life but not once did I doubt the plans that God has for me. Everything is for God’s greater glory.
3. CLOUDS – Newton Faulkner
“Stop looking down in the ground; pick it out of the clouds. No one’s gonna hold you down.”
I consider this song my “victory” song. The line above says it all – look high, young man!
4. DREAMS – Van Halen
“We’ll get higher and higher straight up we’ll climb. Higher and higher, we’ll leave them all behind.”
Another victory song of mine. Just keep on dreaming and you’ll climb higher.
5. EMPTY SPACE – Bukas Palad
“Fear not the noise within, that’s where My voice begins, so you may one day hear My song. Only I can still your storm.”
Whenever I am down, I just listen to this song to comfort me. No matter how intense the storm I feel within, it’s God’s voice that brings the calmness.
6. FAR GREATER LOVE – Jesuit Music Ministry (feat. Michael Shimamoto)
“The storms of life may shake our ground. A greater peace still dwells in our hearts. The dreams we build may fall apart. A deeper hope still runs in our hearts.”
I used to sing solo to this song in Church; but more than that, this song best captures what I am right now. My ground may shake, my bridges may fall, but a Greater Peace and Love resides in me, keeping me grounded.
7. FLY LIKE AN EAGLE – Seal
“Fly like an eagle to the sea.”
Yes, I will fly…
8. HERE I AM LIVE – Yellowcard
“I’ve made mistakes, I know, but here I am alive.”
We all mistakes, but, as Olivia Culpo put it, every experience, whether good or bad, we learn from it.
9. I STILL BELIEVE – Jeremy Camp
“I still believe in Your faithfulness. I still believe in Your truth. I still believe in Your Holy Word. Even when I don’t see, I still believe.”
For the past 26 years, God has always been faithful to me. This song best captures how I respond to His faithfulness.
10. I WILL SING FOREVER – Bukas Palad
“And I will sing forever of Your love; I will celebrate the wonder of Your name.”
Labeled as the “theme song” of music ministries throughout the Philippines, this song best captures the overwhelming rejoicing of my heart because of God’s love.
11. I’M STILL HERE – Vertical Horizon
“If you were right and I was wrong, why are you the one who’s gone and I’m still here?”
No matter how many people have wronged me, I kept my ground and never faltered. After 26 years, I’m still here.
12. ISANG DAAN (The UPLB Centennial Song)
“Dumating man ang hangin ng pagbabago, iskolar huwag patitinag, itaas ang kamao!”
‘Nuff said. Isa akong iskolar ng bayan, noon, ngayon, at magpakailanman!
13. JESUS TAKE THE WHEEL – Carrie Underwood
“Jesus, take the wheel. Take it from my hand, ‘coz I can’t do it on my own.”
I have entrusted my life to God and am now ready to take on the plans He has for me.
14. KINGS AND QUEENS – 30 Seconds to Mars
“The age of man is over. Darkness comes and darkness goes. The lessons that we learned here have only just begun.”
Life is a never-ending process of learning. It is up to us whether we will take those lessons or not. (and yes, I still would like Jared Leto’s vocal range)
15. LOVE NEVER FAILS – David Haas
“Love is patient; love is kind. Love rejoices in the truth.”
This song is taken from one of my most favorite (and probably everyone’s) Bible Verse, 1 Corinthians 13:4-13.
16. MAGNIFICAT (ALL THAT I AM) – Jesuit Music Ministry
“All that I am sings of the God who brings new life to birth in me. My spirit soars on the wings of my Lord.”
This song, taken from the Gospel of Luke, is known as the Canticle of Mary. Wouldn’t it be nice that we also sing Mary’s song of worship and thankfulness to God’s faithfulness and mercy?
17. OVER AND OVER – Puff Johnson
“And if there’s an injustice in this world, we gotta keep fighting on over and over again.”
Life is a never ending process. This song just tells me not to give up and keep on fighting.
18. PILGRIM’S THEME (THE GREATER SCHEME OF THINGS) – Hangad
“I know in time I’ll find my place in the greater scheme of things.”
This song was originally written as a theme song for a bio-documentary on the life of St. Francis Xavier. We all have our ultimate goals in life. We have to keep on finding the path towards that ultimate goal by following the Voice that calls from deep within.
19. START OF SOMETHING GOOD – Daughtry
“I don’t wanna be misunderstood, but I’m starting to believe that this could be the start of something good.”
We never know what surprises life has in store for us. What’s important is that we’re always ready and that we are ready to embrace all opportunities that come our way. One of those opportunities will be the ‘start of something good.’
20. STEP BY STEP – Whitney Houston
“I know you’re hurting, but don’t let the bad things get to you.”
Many hurdles have hindered my way, but there’s no stopping. Step by step I’m getting there.
21. TATSULOK – Bamboo
“Hangga’t may tatsulok at sila ang nasa tuktok, di matatapos itong gulo.”
This song actually captures my ‘bread and butter’ advocacy – genuine land reform in the Philippines.
22. TESTIFY TO LOVE – Wynonna Judd
“For as long as I shall live, I will testify to love. I’ll be a witness in the silences when words are not enough.”
God’s love is seen in His Creation. The least that we can do is be a witness to God’s amazing love.
23. THAT’S THE WAY IT IS – Celine Dion
“Don’t give up on your faith; love comes to those who believe it. And that’s the way it is.”
Over and over again this song has been telling me to never give up on my goals and aspirations.
24. THE JOURNEY – Lea Salonga
“What a journey it has been, and the end is not in sight.”
I have been singing this song for so many years now, particularly during graduation ceremonies (yep, grade school and high school graduation), but now more than ever this song takes on a more special meaning to me. The past 26 years have been a wonderful journey already, and I haven’t even finished that journey yet. I’m quite excited about what’s in store for the following years to come.
25. WALK BY FAITH – Jeremy Camp
“I will walk by faith, even when I cannot see; because this broken road prepares Your will for me.”
The following years of my life may be filled with uncertainty – I don’t know what’s in store – but I am never afraid, because I walk by faith. I know God has a purpose, and as I tread the broken road ahead, I know He will lead me there.
26. WHO AM I – Casting Crowns
“Who am I that the Lord of all the earth would care to know my name, would care to feel my hurt?”
The opening line of the song as written above says it all: without Christ I am no one.