You Love Me Anyway

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This song was born out of the songwriters' experiences as they walked through the book of Hosea with their home church. The Old Testament book of Hosea is one of the most shocking and explicit books of the Bible. Yes, you read that right – Hosea is shocking and explicit. The word "whore" is used eleven times in the narrative, making it difficult to avoid using this rough and offensive term when trying to preach through the book! If you aren't familiar with the story, God tells the prophet Hosea to intentionally marry a prostitute, knowing that she will be unfaithful to him. She goes on to make the prophecy come true and wanders from Hosea multiple times, even having children by her lovers. Each time Hosea goes and retrieves her, a picture of self-sacrificing love. The story is meant to depict how God feels about His people, the nation of Israel – and by way of Jesus' work – Christians.

If Christians were more honest about how they were doing spiritually, they would share things similar to this song. We hear about redemption week in and week out and many times it just ceases to capture our attention any more. Instead, we become captivated by the things of this world, and are ashamed to admit that we'd hidden beneath a veneer of religiosity. If we are honest, all of our supposed goodness, our godliness, is riddled with imperfections and selfishness. That's why the song says, "this is all I have." We have nothing to give to God in order for Him to keep loving us. But the amazing, even shocking, way of grace is that God is willing to continue forgiving and wooing us back.

In verse three we remember that this is possible because Jesus has born all of our failures, all of our shame, every idol, with him to the cross, and vanquished their effects and power forever. The way back to the love of God is through the agony of the cross. As we see with our mind's and heart's eye the nail-scarred hands of Jesus reaching out to us, we will catch ourselves growing in godliness as this ridiculous love crowds out our waywardness.

A lyrical note: the writers originally wrote "though I am a whore" in the chorus, but it was not appropriate for a general congregation in a typical public worship service. In your own private worship, or in a suitable situation, feel free to sing the original lyric.


I sadly confess that the story of grace
Has ceased to inspire or amaze.
The things of the world, they have captured my heart,
And inside I am falling apart.

I'm ashamed to admit that I've hidden from You-
I've twisted and shaded the truth.
The picture I've drawn of what's hidden inside
Was to build my renown and my pride.
But You call me to come back to Your side,
You've promised that Your arms are open wide.

This is all I have,
I've thrown my love away.
Though I am a mess
You love me anyway.
What love, great love,
Come sweep me off my feet.
What love, great love,
You love me anyway.

I see Jesus there, bearing all of my shame,
My idols are listed by name.
He looks up from the cross, in the myst'ry of grace,
I see love in the tears on His face.
As nail-scarred hands reach in welcome out to me
I feel my stubborn idols turn and flee.

By David L. Ward & Gabe Zepeda
© 2012, admin by Thousand Tongues


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Just want to tell you how much I appreciate your music and what a blessing it's been to me in my relationship with the Lord. Just downloaded 'You love me anyway.' Awesome!!!!! Praying for you and Thousand Tongues.
» John Sweet on August 1st, 2013

I love this song! Our church uses this song in public worship and it is fantastic. It's been a blessing and encouragement to me. Thank you.
» Mike Boardley on August 4th, 2013
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