“Switchfoot” or “On Fire”


A few pictures from the Switchfoot concert. It rocked pretty hard. The lasting memory will be their token fake ending: The crowd was ushered headfirst into the Meant to Live chorus, singing time and again "We were meant to live for so much more…" Lead singer Jon Forman placed the mike stand center stage, pivoted the mike toward the crowd and walked off stage and the band continued to lead the crowd through repeat after repeat of the chorus.

We were meant to live
We were meant to live
We were meant to live…

How powerful is that for youth of such a broken and hopeless city as Jackson to be singing at the top of their lungs "We were meant to live!"


Life…it’s what God offers people: a real life. So many kids grow up to believe "I was meant to die" or "I was meant to struggle" or "I was meant to get by." NO! You were meant to LIVE.

I’ve always appreciated Switchfoot as a band, but when you experience a band in concert, you get to sense their heart a bit. And as I heard song after song, and beheld how the crowd devoured their positive message, my appreciation for their ministry skyrocketed.

Sure…the draw the high school / college crowd for the most part. Probably lots of youth group kids. Our group was probably above the mean age of the crowd. I’m not their target audience. But how can you not appreciate a band that has earned a say in the struggle for our country’s future?

They connect with the new generation’s longing for more purpose in their lives…for a desire to connect with something mystical and spiritual and bigger than themselves. But, they don’t always have an outlet for that because the media is constantly telling them to desire things of the flesh And, as we all do in weakness and confusion, we listen to the loudest, most convincing voice, which is either the internal call of the flesh, or the external yell of culture. But neither satisfy, because the spirit longs to be connected with the Spirit.

And so Switchfoot plucks that string of the heart… Check out these lyrics to On Fire:

Tell you where you need to go
Tell you who you need to be
Tell you what you need to know
Tell you when you’ll need to leave

But everything inside you knows
Says more than what you’ve heard
So much more than empty conversations
Filled with empty words

And you’re on fire
When he’s near you
You’re on fire
When he speaks
You’re on fire
Burning at these mysteries

Give me one more time around
Give me one more chance to see
Give me everything you are
Give me one more chance to be near you

Cause everything inside looks like
Everything I hate
You are the hope I have for change
You are the only chance I’ll take

I’m on fire
When you’re near me
I’m on fire
When you speak
And I’m on fire
Burning at these mysteries
These mysteries…

I’m standing on the edge of me (x3)
I’m standing on the edge

And I’m on fire
When you’re near you
I’m on fire
When you speak
I’m on fire
Burning at these mysteries…

I could go on and on about a few more songs, like 24 (You’re raising these twenty four voices /
With twenty four hearts
/ With all of my symphonies
/ In twenty four parts /
But I want to be one today /
Centered and true

/ I’m singing Spirit take me up in arms with You) and Dare You to Move (
Welcome to the fallout / Welcome to resistance / The tension is here / Tension is here / Between who you are and who you could be / Between how it is and how it should be), but that would take a while.

By Joel Maust

Joel Maust is a marketer, blogger and photographer living in the beautiful Flathead Valley of northwest Montana.

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