Leaders make the indescribable visible. Isaiah’s words, for instance,
brought comfort to a defeated nation and transformed a people’s
imagination, empowering them to mount up with wings like eagles.
Those words bear fruits today, capturing a post-modern visionary’s
heart, urging Chris Tomlin to call together God’s people for life-renewing

“I feel as though we’re like this landing strip in the desert for our great,
incredible God to arrive on; a way for Him to come into people’s lives,”
Tomlin says of the album’s metaphorical moniker inspired in part by
Isaiah 40. Tomlin’s third studio record and first in two years, Arriving
demonstrates a Christian’s glad surrender meeting God’s welcoming arms.

Tomlin’s undeniable energy is charismatic and contagious. Avoiding the
trappings of public performance, Chris stands beside the people he
serves, raising his voice to God with them so that they share God’s
presence together.

Credited with venerable church choruses such as “Forever,” “We Fall
Down,” and “The Wonderful Cross,” Tomlin is considered one of this
era’s top songwriters for the church with five songs in CCLI’s Top 60
and four more in the service’s Top 500. With millions singing his songs
weekly, Chris is recognized as a pivotal voice of today’s modern
expression of Christian worship.

Arriving rocks with inspiring, guitar-driven pop melodies reflecting
the roots traditions of Austin, Texas, where it was recorded and home
to the church Tomlin co-founded, Austin Stone Community Church.
The project’s raw, straightforward lyrics are knotted tight with hooks
as big and broad as the Lone Star state sky. Producer Ed Cash
(Caedmon’s Call, Kathy Mattea, Bebo Norman) brings his signature
touch to the tracks, revealing that the talent pool is deeper than even
the artist knew.

“People will be surprised by some moments,” Tomlin says. “The
music’s so honest. The guys and I are just playing our songs the
way we play them. That’s something special thing about the record
—what you see is what you get.”

Arriving tips the scales more toward corporate worship songs than
devotional ones, melding wisdom, gratitude and celebration into a
single package. “I try to write songs in a clear, simple way that people
can understand and so they can sing the songs after hearing them once
or twice,” Tomlin shares. He crafted nine of 11 songs for the record,
including “How Great Is Our God,” which Chris identifies as the anchor
to Arriving. The chorus declares:

“How great is our God/Sing with me/How great is our God/All will
see/How great, how great is our God.”

“It’s about the greatness of God and how there are anthems ringing
throughout the world by his people and by the heavens praising His
glory.” Already, Chris and the band are playing this anthem to crowds
receiving it enthusiastically, as at a summer 2004 Willow Creek Arts
Festival. “We’ve never had this kind of response to a song. People
won’t let it end. They just keep singing. I had no idea this simple
chorus could turn into something this big,” Chris says, amazed.

The first radio single from Arriving will be “Indescribable,” written by
Laura Story. Producer Cash calls it “one of the best songs I’ve ever

“I don’t know—I just feel it in my gut and in my heart,” Chris says,
his feelings, appropriately, almost indescribable. “The expressions
of God in the song are so big. In my head I heard this song being
sung in an arena full of people screaming it to God.”

Also included in this authentic offering: “Holy Is the Lord,” a song
debuted before some 20,000 at Passion’s OneDay03; “Unfailing Love,”
co-written with new friend Cary Pierce (Jackopierce) and recorded with
Sparrow Records’ Steven Curtis Chapman; and “Your Grace Is Enough,”
written by worship leader Matt Maher, his own songwriting inspired by

“God promises that when we draw close to Him, He’ll draw close to us,”
Chris says. “That’s what I hope happens through these songs.”

Tomlin will get the chance to extend Arriving’s invitation this fall on a
70-city tour with 4-time GRAMMY, 47-time Dove Award-winning
Steven Curtis Chapman.

“Yeah, I like to tell people Steven will be closing for us,” Chris laughs,
the humor a thin mask over the deep gratitude he feels toward one of
his musical heroes. “Without a doubt, Steven’s been the biggest influence
on me musically. He’s been from a far a mentor to me. He’s a man of
integrity and a great musician, songwriter and performer. And lo and
behold, here we are going out on tour together! It’s just unbelievable.”

“I am so excited about what’s going on!” he continues. “I pray that
people will know more and hunger more after God because of these
songs. People are changed because of God arriving in their lives.
Grace changes people into people with hope.”

He continues, “I look back these last few years since I started recording
and see how I’ve grown. It’s incredible—and it’s all been God. I just
try to walk His path. Since I was 13 I’ve felt called to write songs for
the church. I’m humbled that He continues to use me like this.”

Arriving honors that calling, marking a way for God to arrive in the
hearts of humanity, making an often indescribable God visible to
searching desert travelers.