In a culture that emphasizes “living for the now“, “live each day to its fullest since it may be your last“, and “he who dies with the most toys wins” I’ve always felt a little out of place. As a believer there’s has always been an awareness of an afterlife, the place of heavenly rewards, an eternity with Christ. I’ve always struggled with the “now” and what pleasures were acceptable in the eyes of God.
In retrospect, Does God Sleep was one of my more evangelical efforts. While not really intended, there seems to be a heart-felt plea for acceptance and acceptance of Christ that threads some of my most challenging works together. In Wasted Time I actually update themes from What A Friend We Have In Jesus in that the piece (co-written by Leaha McGillivray) points out our needless suffering in light of a readily available Savior.
“We came into this world alone and we go out of it alone” but do we have to live here alone? So much of our loneliness has to do with unrealistic criteria: we want them to be a certain way, they want us to be a certain way. It appears that a direct result of The Fall is our profound inability to not only accept people as they are but to also enjoy them in the process.
Fundamentally obvious and ridiculous at the same time. Sure, if we are the people who believe than we know we have everything we need in Him but not only were we created to need the company of humans most of us walk around with a lot of head knowledge of the presence of God without experiencing much of it. This concerns me because as I am one week away from my 28th year in Christ I cannot remember a time where His presence was not obvious and, if you’ll forgive me, a wee bit aggressive. Yup, all of this, "The Holy Spirit is a gentleman" stuff has rarely fitted in my picture.
I just read in a book that there is no biblical evidence that we are supposed to suffer illnesses in this life, that illness is a direct result of our behavior, diet, belief systems, etc. The writer went on to say that to pronounce a disease incurable was an arrogant attack on God because by doing so we are saying that HE is the author and perfector of that disease since we all know there is nothing bigger than God.
Jesus once said something like, “Don’t be calling God your Father because you people are liars, and your father is Satan, the father of lies.” He was pointing out our nature, our sinful nature and its inherent need to lie. Lie to ourselves, lie to one another and ultimately lie to God.
I really did.
A few years ago, I played a church venue in AZ and one of the bands on the bill was Ticket To Ride. When I met these guys (average age 19, I’m thinking) I did what I usually do when I am nervous meeting people who clearly have no interest in me, I made a dumb joke. This time by starting to sing The Beatles’ song of the same name.
I know it will sound like I’ve had my big “duh” moment when I ask, “Has anyone noticed that people don’t listen anymore?” But I want to take it a step further. After decades of societal breakdown in the communication of listening I’m frightfully aware that people don’t talk anymore.
For those of you who do not know, instead of writing The Great American Novel, I have opted instead to faithfully submit blog entries inspired by the opening lines of or simply about my songs. This is my third and final attempt to do something with “Don’t Touch Me Any More” as the same thing seems to happen every time I try: I feel the son speaks for itself.
So many of us have suffered such loss in our lives that it’s hard to imagine that any loving God could sit idly by and not intervene and prevent our tragedies. Family, friends, mentors, children, lovers, heck, even house pets point an angry finger at The Almighty when there is sudden loss or lingering agony.