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    Story behind “Above All”

    Posted on August 21, 2009 by Paul | 8 Comments | Jump to Comments Box Below

    By Paul Baloche and Lenny LeBlanc

    “Crucified laid behind a stone

    You lived to die rejected and alone

    Like a rose trampled on the ground

    You took the fall and thought of me

    Above all”

    Paul’s Story

    On a Tuesday morning a few years ago at my church, alone at the piano, I began worshiping the Lord. As I sang, I started thinking of how Jesus is so much greater than all the temporal things that our culture esteems as great – power, fame, riches, wisdom, etc. The words just came out….”Lord, you are above all kingdoms, above all thrones, above all wonders the world has ever known…” Over the next year, I tried to write a chorus that fit the verses, but I never felt like it was “the one.”

    Then one day, Lenny LeBlanc and I got together to write. I played him about twenty ideas for songs and the only one that caught his ear was the verse for ” Above all” that had no chorus. He woke up the next morning and said, “How about…. ‘Crucified, laid behind a stone…like a rose trampled on the ground….’” ” Whoa!” I thought, “What a contrast, what a picture – that’s Jesus. The One who is and always will be above all, was willing to be crucified and rejected, just to demonstrate His love for an unappreciative world.”

    By the time we got to “You took the fall and thought of me….above all,” Lenny and I were in tears. The revelation hit us and broke our hearts. It made us realize how worthy He really is. That He truly deserves our worship.

    This song means a lot to me because it came from an honest place. I wasn’t ” trying” to write a song originally. I sincerely just wanted to worship Him and praise Him for His greatness. Getting to finish the song with Lenny was such a bonus since he has been such a mentor and friend to me for years.

    I have had many people tell me through tears that they feel such love for the Lord as they sing “Above All.” The revelation that The God of the universe was willing to humble himself to the point of crucifixion and death, just to reveal His love for us inspires a broken and contrite heart – like a fragrance of worship coming from a broken jar of perfume.

    I remember one time in particular that I heard people singing “Above All” in worship. I was sitting on the floor with my children, watching the inaugural prayer service for President Bush on Fox News Live. Michael W. Smith walked up to the piano and began to sing “Above all powers, above all kings…..” Tears began to pour out from my eyes. My 8 year-old daughter asked, “Are you all right Daddy? What’s wrong?” I replied, “Honey, these are happy tears.” I’m humbled and blown away that a simple prayer of worship, started at my little piano, found its way to The President of the United States. The possibility that this song could be an encouragement to Him is such an honor. ” I pray that he would draw strength and wisdom from The One who is above him……and above all. It blesses me to know that Jesus will be worshiped with this song for years to come.

    Lenny’s Story

    When Paul Baloche and I finished writing “Above All”, I somehow knew in my heart that it would touch millions of people. It all started when Paul and I got together to write some songs for my soon to be recorded project for Integrity Music. Paul flew in and arrived late in the afternoon. We spent the rest of the day talking and kicking around song ideas that we had started. As the evening progressed, Paul played me the verse to “Above All” except for a few lines that we later changed. Something about the verse really touched me and I told him I thought it was a great idea. He shared with me that he had written several different choruses for the song and had even sung them in various forms during worship times at his home church. He also said he wasn’t happy with any of the versions he had written. We chatted for while then headed off to our rooms.

    Early the next morning before Paul woke up, I started playing around with a chorus idea. Later on that morning, we started and finished the song ” Closer.” After a short break, I played my idea for an “Above All” chorus. Paul really liked it and we began fine tuning the song. Every time we got to the line, “Like a rose trampled on the ground,” we would both begin to weep. Here we were – two grown men in a puddle of tears trying our best to finish writing a song.

    I think the reason “Above All” has impacted us so powerfully – and many others including Michael W. Smith, is because it’s such a beautiful picture of how a God that is above everything, would become like a rose trampled on the ground, take the fall and think of us….above all.”

    Dollie Curry 10/09/09

    “Above All” is such a powerful worship song!!! The love of Jesus is so great and powerful! I am so encouraged to tell others about His great love for us. Thank you for letting God use you both, and most of all, being at a place in your Christian journey to hear the voice and heart of God. I don’t think that there will be a dry eye, especially on those who love the Lord, when “Above All” ministered. HALLELUJAH!!! Oh What Love!!!

    Karen 23/09/09

    I love this song. We sing it at my church a lot, but last Sunday when we sang it I was just so touched by the words or Jesus’ sacrifice that I choked up and couldn’t sing. I had tears streaming down my face. This is a truly beautiful and oh so true song and I want to thank you for it. I know that God placed the words on your heart so that you could share them with others. I wonder how many people have accepted Christ as a result of having heard this song.

    Anthony 30/09/09

    That song is one of the very best songs of all time I would say. It has a way of bringing reality to a Christian, and really touching the very soul because of the truth in it.

    Brandon 20/01/10

    I am blessed everytime I hear or sing this song. Thank you for allowing God to use the both of you in bringing this song together.

    Joshua 27/11/10

    Everytime I sing this song, tears roll down. Truly this song touches hearts

    Dorothy Tomitom 07/11/12

    Thank you Father for such an inspirational song which You blessed in the hearts of these two wonderful guys. Everything about this song is moving. I am always moved everytime I meditate on this song. It gives me an inner energy to appreciate the love that God gave and demonstrated through His innocent Son. May God continue to use you both. (Goroka – Papua New Guinea) 8th November 2012.

    OCEAN GEORGE BUSH 24/09/14

    The first time i was transfered to new christian founded schhol in kampala, I heard this song from the church choir, instantly new, it touched me so much ,that i never realy was so much enthusiastic about church, but when Above all Powers was sung, the whole church experience changed, i wanted to hear it more and more, it touched me, and deeply my faith in christ took a big step of growth.
    This story een inspires me more, thnk you Jesus-for using this two sons of yours, Use me too Above all things lord. Amen

    Geri Fabro 18/10/14

    It was 1998 (11th year marriage) when my husband (now a pastor at Great Commission Fellowship, Fullerton) and I were almost separating, my brother in law, Sonny, invited my husband to go to his church at Cornerstone International Christian Church. God changed his heart first. He invited me so many times but I kept ignoring him then one day I went with him so he can stop bothering me. P&W team started singing. First song I didn’t feel anything, second song still nothing and third song it was “Above All.” I felt different. As I was standing listening and reading the words, I felt something in me that I didn’t feel before. I had goosebumps and all of the sudden I felt warm. I couldn’t understand what was happening to me at that time. As I was standing, my husband was next to me, I started tearing but I was fighting it. I told myself I’m not going to cry in front of these people, No way! Then the words became so much alive to me as if it was speaking to me and when they sang the part “Crucified, laid behind the stone….like a rose trampled on the ground…, I had tears streaming down my face and started sobbing. It pierced my prideful heart. This song made me understand why Jesus was crucified and died… because of His love for me. As I was sobbing, for the first time after 6 weeks of ignoring my husband, I held his hand and told him things will be okay. We cried together, kissed, hugged and the same day I accepted Christ in my life. It was the best decision I have ever made in my life. Ever since then God first in our lives and together serving His people. Thank you, Paul! Through your music ministry, our marriage was saved. We just had our 28th year anniversary this year. Thank you, Lord!

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