Song Stories

(Photo by Robby Jeffers)

Song Stories: Madison Cunningham
A Sneak Peek Behind Authenticity

By Sarah Komisky

In a call for authenticity, here are some stories behind the songs on Madison Cunningham’s latest release that will inspire you in your journey toward authenticity with God and others.

“Not in Control”

When we went in to recording the record, I had both songs written and half written and there’s a lot of songs so I kind of felt this very daunting task before me. I kind of felt incapable of completing it and felt a little bit out of control. But there’s other things that kind of happened in my life during that time.

Some friendships that I had kind of fell apart and it really, really hurt me because they meant so much and they’ve been so high in opinion that when they kind of crumbled, they fell long and hard. So I kind of wrote about that just kind of thinking, ‘Wow, I really had no way of steering that situation any other direction, it just happened!’ And that’s okay because it was good in the long run, and I learned a lot from it and I didn’t realize the person I became during it. I changed who I was and that needed to change and I needed to be back to the old Madi that wasn’t drenched in other people’s opinions.

At this time, I kind of felt this overwhelming sense of being completely out of control. I just of opened my heart and thought, this is what I’m going through and I can sing this and I can mean it and I think that will help me finish it and I kind of sat down and wrote about how I felt and I finished.

“Old You”

It wasn’t anything that I’ve gone through. It was just a topic I decided to write about. Just kind of talking about someone trying to come back to truth or maybe coming to it for the first time and wondering how to leave the person they’ve always known behind or if they should bring them with them or if they should stay. I think it’s when God starts to transform a person and they’re kind of like, ‘Whoa, this is crazy! This is like a whole new me and how do I leave the old person behind? Or do I keep taking them with me, because it’s not that easy.’ So it’s kind of just asking that question. It’s kind of hard to forget everything; to let the past be the past. It kind of keeps popping up, but to press forward and to be excited about the new person God is making you to be.

“I Don’t Want to Move”

My Dad kind of mentioned that he wanted me to go to this mission trip to Nepal in October. And I did not want to go. The first meeting I went to they talked about scorpions, and leeches, and then they talked about snakes and the bad water with disease and it completely freaked me out. To be honest, I’ve never liked planes and I’ve always had a fear of planes. This was going to be a fifteen hour flight. I was kind of like kicking and screaming. When I got there, it was kind of like a slap in the face, a very loving one. It was kind of like, whoa, there are people here, real people here, that are seriously suffering and I just kind of live my easy, nonchalant life.

I met a girl that came to the conference that we were running over in Kathmandu and she said, “Oh today was wonderful but I’ve got to get back before my family knows.” She gave me the whole situation basically saying if her family knew that she was gone at this conference, she would be disowned or abused. I remember just thinking: I don’t know if I’m at that place where I could actually say I would risk it all for this gospel when I could barely even risk a plane flight or leaving the comfort of home. I just remember being almost shamed by it and humiliated but it was the best kind of humiliation really because it kind of just opened up my eyes to this broad perspective. So while I was there, I wrote the concept there as, ‘Wow, now that I’m here, I don’t want to move.’ When we feel the presence of God and when we feel, we see the work he is doing, and we kind of go, ‘I don’t really want it any other way.’

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