With it being the end of another year it is time to dish out the All4God awards for the top ten things in the Christian ‘bubble’ from the past year. These are based purely on my subjective opinion, and while recipients can brag about being an “All4God Top Ten of 2010” there is no accompanying cash prize/trophy/etc. So without further ado, here are the All4God Top Ten of 2010:
Best Christian Rock Album – Third Day ~ Move – a strong return to form for Third Day with an album full of great tunes that are unashamedly focused on God (I don’t know if it was just me that felt their last album Revelations seemed to water down the faith aspects to appeal to the mainstream). Standout track is Children of God, one of the few songs that make a children’s choir work.
Best movie with a not so subtle Christian message – The Voyage of the Dawn Treader – the third Narnia movie, my favourite so far, full of little lines about needing faith and some not so subtle hints about Aslan being a metaphor for God. Plus it has a 3-D dragon! Only flaw would be there isn’t enough of Susan in it…
Best Website that isn’t All4God – StuffChristiansLike.net – surely one of the funniest websites in existence, Christian or not. With a fresh article by the hilarious Jon Acuff most days that will raise several laughs as it points out all those funny little things about the Christian life, and a serious reflection each Wednesday which would be worthy of the award on its own, this is a site to keep coming back to.
Best Hip-hop remix of an old worship classic – LZ7 ~ This Little Light – LZ7 are a Manchester band who this year released a gem of an album ‘Light’, with songs to rival the likes of N-Dubz and Taio Cruz (if they weren’t so clearly Christian lyrics their songs would surely be making waves in the charts). But the stand out was their reworking of the old Sunday School classic “This Little Light” and the campaign they ran alongside it to encourage people to let the light of Christ shine through them.
Best Northern Irish Worship Album of the year – Rend Collective Experiment ~ Organic Family Hymnal – All4God is a NI based site, so it is only fitting we award the best of Northern Irish music. And it was a strong year too, but for me Rend Collective’s debut was the best, with many great songs of worship and a unique, distinct musical sound, and really powerful lyrics that have great depth to them. Check it out!
Best podcast – Mars Hill Church Mark Driscoll – If you haven’t heard of American pastor Mark Driscoll I would really recommend checking him out, he has a great style of preaching in a way that is strongly Biblically backed up, humorous and easy to listen to without being full of pointless anecdotes, hard hitting and convicting and relevant to today’s world yet still true to what the Bible says.
Best Book – Francis Chan ~ Forgotten God – one of those ‘hard to put down’ books, all about the Holy Spirit, the oft forgotten member of the Trinity. A very well balanced book that reminds us of the need to remember the importance of the Holy Spirit more than most of us do, but also to avoid straying into ‘crazy charismatic’ territory.
Best Twitter Account – @CSLewisDaily – a daily quote from CS Lewis, sent out via twitter that you can get sent to your phone for free. CS Lewis wrote many great books about Christianity, and so has lots of great quotes. If you are on twitter give it a follow!
Best YouTube Video– Pre-blessed food – one of those videos that loses the joke if it is explained to you before you watch it, so just search for it on YouTube, and laugh.
Best Newcomer of the Year – Nathan Jess – Nathan released his first solo album this year, ‘O Rescued Ones’ and it is a great debut. He has an easy listening acoustic sound, with some great worship songs and some other more performance based songs. There is a clear message to the album that how we act is what counts, not what we think or what we say. If you can, check it out.