It’s hard to pinpoint who first declared, “Music is food for the soul.” Perhaps Arthur Schopenhauer first stated it, over 200 years ago. Perhaps Plato inspired the sentiment when he penned “Music is medicine for the soul.” Regardless, each sentiment gives voice to the power of music.

Music is food for the soul. This statement helps me stop and evaluate the music to which I am listening.

Sugar is delicious, isn’t it? Pop has a place. Crispy potato chips are delightful. But when those delicious delights become the main ingredients at a meal many times in a row, trouble begins.

If you find yourself spiritually lethargic or emotionally flabby, consider the music you are feeding yourself. Nourishing, life-giving, soul-satisfying music often takes the form of the good, the right, and the true. Believers live in freedom and are called to freedom. But we are admonished to not use our freedom to indulge our sinful natures (Galatians 5:13).

Music is meditation. You may find that certain songs are fodder for the spirit, the ultimate comfort food. You may find that certain songs give you the jitters or lead to the emotional equivalent of a sugar crash. You may find that some tunes—and their baked-in lyrics—play on repeat in your mind, causing you to meditate on things you would never say out loud. Take a moment to evaluate the music that you are allowing to feed you. Is it nourishing?

Music rings through the experience of God’s people in the Bible—uplifting their praise, uniting them for worship, summoning them for battle, and expressing their most profound thoughts. It does the same today, does it not? The rhythm of worship pulses throughout the people of God: harmonizing praise, singing worship, and chanting truth. The wise believer surrounds herself or himself with music that uplifts the spirit and worships the glorious and majestic God. Does your music reflect your beautiful and holy God? “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy”—listen to such things. (Philippians 4:8)

On what are you meditating? Give voice to the song in your heart, and consider feeding your soul nourishing sustenance. Here’s to a well-balanced meal!

“For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.” (Ephesians 5:8-9)

What will you put on your playlist today?