Love Is The Movement
When Switchfoot frontman Jon Foreman was a boy, his dad read to him from C.S. Lewis' "The Chronicles of Narnia." A portion of the tale left images in Foreman’s mind of frozen statue-like people who were lifeless and cold. Years later, Foreman captured these images in the song "Love Is the Movement."
In 1999, Foreman, his brother Tim and fellow bandmate Chad Butler were a long way from their California home, staying in Nashville to put together their sophomore album New Way to Be Human. Foreman remembers staying up one night, alone, working on the album.
"I remember it being real late, and I was whispering the music," he says. That night Foreman remembered those frozen, broken images his dad read about years ago. To him they seemed to embody the lifelessness of those who are caught up in having and doing, what he refers to as the "lifeless motion."
"Our work and enslaving lusts can freeze us from true motion," Foreman says. "And that was what I was trying to write about. I know that when I get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life, I forget what I am living for and what has given me life."
Foreman says Los Angeles' culture represents a society caught up in empty motion—typically on the cutting edge of what’s trendy, but often of very little substance. "A day in L.A./And millions of faces/Are looking for movement/'Cause everything’s stuck/And everything’s frozen/And everyone's broken/And nobody moves/And everyone's scared/That the motion will never come."
Foreman says the words to the song came quickly that night, but the finished product didn't seem to fit with the other songs on the album. The group decided to hold the cut for its latest release Learning to Breathe. Over two years later, Foreman admits he is still learning how lifeless our world can be, even when there seems to be a lot of movement around us.
"For me motion is a positive thing," Foreman says. "It's about change, and change for me is a positive thing. If we are created in the image of God, we must clearly represent who He is when we are loving one another. That would be true motion."