Jodi Essex Reveals the Story Behind Her New Single "Unravel"

Jodi Essex

CCM Artist Jodi Essex returns with her brand new rock ballad and music video, "Unravel." The song proclaims the Gospel power that comes from surrender. Essex's music has been embraced by industry gatekeepers and listening audiences alike. Reflecting light in a more vulnerable way, "Unravel" continues Essex's unapologetic proclamation of the Gospel. You can purchase/stream the song HERE.

Q: Jodi, great to have you back. Congratulations on your new single "Unravel." What's the song about?

Hello! Nice to be back here chatting with you again, thank you for this opportunity!

"Unravel" is about peeling back our human layers; allowing God to see all that we are and letting Him in, seeking to be unraveled; being vulnerable in our transformative faith journey. The process of "unraveling" ourselves is a common struggle between what we'll find as we dig into our deepest selves and putting down our swords, so to speak, allowing God to change those findings - with a "no turning back" mentality. It's a moment where we feel as humans, we are losing something when in reality, a Christ-centered life and salvation in Jesus offers so much more than we could ever imagine.

The song processes through our peaks and valleys, our darkest and brightest moments both; it's the challenge of choosing heavenly things over worldly things. We rise and fall against the things promised to us and shown to us, while finding ourselves at a crossroads, both of a faithless heart and a loyal servant. HE is merciful. HE forgives. HE accepts. HE redeems. Unravel implores God to cradle us, "lead us to safety(lyric)" and lovingly dwell in a humble and devoted surrender.

Q: Tell us about how the song came about.

The actual inspiration came from not only my own complicated journey, but witnessing many conversations that reflected a tone of "battle of the wills." Our will versus the will of God and His plan for our lives. How many times do we spout off what "we're going to do with our lives?" or traverse life on auto-pilot without once thinking if what we're doing is our calling? How often do we seek God's counsel in a prayerful intercession? We, as humans, want what we want. "Unravel" brings us into a space where we readily invite God into our lives for healing and renewal, for answers to our deepest questions and desires. I felt this song to simply be an intimate conversation with Jesus and almost a private prayer session with Him - face to face.

Q: Your song speaks about being vulnerable before God, why is it often so difficult for us to open up to God?

Ahhh...excellent question! I feel the answer is so multi-dimensional. I can best explain it this way: First, vulnerability leaves us exposed, as we must put every bit of our defenses away, hiding nothing of ourselves. Vulnerability is difficult. It requires a great deal of humility and trust especially when we face challenges that are more personal than we are comfortable sharing. Weaknesses can be hard to admit, and I think this is especially true when it comes to talking with God. I feel like most of the times we go to Him, laying it all at His feet, are the times where we feel broken or maybe experiencing despair. That is not to say our prayers and conversations with God are not always sincere. However, I think we can all agree that at times, there is a stronger, more heartfelt longing for God and His word when we reach breaking points in our lives.

I think our vulnerability before God happens when we are truly open to what He will do in our lives. Giving our struggles up to God usually means we're in for some big changes or some big challenges. Maybe the ideal path we chose for ourselves is not the path he has planned for us. So, here we find ourselves again at the aforementioned breaking point. We're finally willing to let go and sometimes even abandon our life plans and follow God's call to something new and, oftentimes, greater than we had ever imagined for ourselves.

Q: How and why should we surrender to Christ?

"Surrender" can be defined as "giving up." However, in the biblical sense and as it relates to living a Christ-centered life, Jesus is asking us to accept His invitation and to give up control of our worldly life to Him, for Him, and through Him. Jesus is asking us to trust him fully, in full surrender, to lead us, dwell in us, love and help us. When we do fully surrender to Jesus, we walk in His power and blessing. John 3:1-20 is the most obvious answer as it relates to being "born again," experiencing a spiritual renewal. It is an expression used to define the moment or process of fully accepting faith in Jesus Christ.

It is an experience when the teachings of Christianity and Jesus become real, and the "born again" acquire a personal relationship with God. This can be explained that accepting Jesus means to truly believe it in our hearts and to confess it to others, too. We are ALL called to evangelize in one way or another. Despite your profession, your social circles, and faithful internal commitment, Jesus knows your heart through and through; He also feels deeply all the ways we could go about our lives denying Him.

Once we accept Jesus into our lives and get saved, we are only getting started. Following Jesus means living a clean and right life. We all have sins in our life. Even mature believers are susceptible to sin. Romans 3:23 tells us that we all have sinned. Asking forgiveness of sins to Jesus requires us to come to Him humbly, and again, in full surrender. Not only do we ask Him to forgive us for all our wrongs, but also that we repent from the sin itself. Repentance means to change our ways and to turn from something. When we truly repent from something, we're making a choice to not do that thing anymore. Yes, there will be stumbling. Even backsliding. Walking the walk is not an easy task, given our human ways. But staying focused on your daily walk will help your journey. Which leads me to the last part! 

New and seasoned followers of Christ are wise to spend daily time with the Lord. We do this by praying to God as often as possible; we bring everything to God for direction and guidance. We spend time with Him when we read the bible, which is the Word of God and was inspired by God. Also, we spend time with the Lord when we listen to music that glorifies Him and when we worship Him. And prayer? It can be as simple as a lovely, intimate "chat" with God. As we seek God daily, and as we strive to avoid things of a "worldly" lifestyle, God teaches us and helps us grow. This is the magnificent surrendered life!

Q: Tell us more about the accompanying video of "Unravel."

Aw, what fun is that?! must watch it and I encourage everyone to check it out on my YouTube channel Friday, February 25, just two days after the release of "Unravel." This song actually is very worshipful and I, along with my amazing creative team, worked to create a very simple yet artful concept to match the prayerful subject matter of the song. One awesome factor to note is that Josiah Prince (guitarist for Disciple and my current producer) appears in this video. It was fun getting to share the backdrop with the person I created this song with. I'm very proud of it and hope listeners and viewers will also enjoy it!

Q: In terms of new music, what can fans look forward to in the near future.

There will be another single release in May, followed by the release of an EP at the beginning of summer. I also will have a couple of single releases after the EP, which involves a collaboration with fellow rocker, Matt Moore. I also hope to get out and tour. I am dying to play these songs live for everyone to enjoy and rock out to! It has been an absolute pleasure, thank you again for the opportunity to share my thoughts behind "Unravel!" 


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