By Aaron Wilson
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A star-studded ensemble of celestial bodies adorns a new worship anthem celebrating the God of creation.
“Count the Stars,” produced by Lifeway Worship, features the electromagnetic “voices” of planets, stars and galaxies. The authentic audio recordings captured and licensed by NASA provide an audio background to the anthem, while telescopic NASA photographs of deep space visually adorn the piece.
Arranged by Kent Hooper and Phillip Keveren, “Count the Stars” reflects the theme of Psalm 8:3-4 in which King David writes, “When I observe your heaven, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is a human being that you remember him, a son of man that you look after him?”
“When I first heard the song, I was blown away by how it opens your imagination to consider how big God is,” said Craig Adams, creative director at Lifeway. “Not long before this, I had been privy to a study where NASA had electromagnetically captured the sounds of celestial bodies. I go to church with some NASA employees who were able to help us get some of those sounds, along with footage from deep space to accompany the song.”
In “Count the Stars,” the sounds of the cosmos are overlaid with human voices declaring praise through the chorus:
When I try to count the stars
I remember just how big you are
Who am I that you would think of me?
I can’t fathom all you’ve done
The beauty and the wonder
Of your faithfulness in everything I see
I’m reminded of the mighty God You are
When I try to count the stars
“When I first read the lyrics, I had the feeling we’ve all experienced when laying on a blanket, looking up at the stars and realizing it’s just so vast. It makes you feel, not insignificant, but small in a way that’s big,” said Keveren, who described the arrangement as “a cosmic stew” made up of digital keyboard samplings, a traditional orchestra, human voices and the sounds of the universe.
From its first line to closing refrain, “Count the Stars” seeks to create a sense of awe, juxtaposed against the humbling knowledge that the Lord would have His eye upon the very humanity He took on through the incarnation. The song’s bridge hints at parallels between the first light of creation and the light of Christ which overcomes the darkness:
You set the heavens in motion
Speaking the chaos to life
In the blink of a moment, darkness surrendered to light
“We know that the rocks and the hills, the streams and the clouds, the planets and galaxies—the entire universe is singing the song of God,” said Adams. “Our hope is that this song would not only stretch people’s minds and hearts, but also their souls as they join in, every day, the great song of creation.”
More information on “Count the Stars” can be found at Lifeway.com.
Aaron Wilson is a writer for Lifeway Christian Resources.
About Lifeway Christian Resources
In operation since 1891, Lifeway Christian Resources is one of the leading providers of Christian resources, including Bibles, books, Bible studies, worship music, VBS and church supplies, as well as camps and events for all ages. Lifeway is the world’s largest provider of Spanish Bibles. Headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee, Lifeway receives no denominational funding and operates as a self-supporting nonprofit.