MORE THAN JUST A SONG
We all have our favorite song, that one that has special meaning to us. My family always gives me a hard time, saying that my “favorite” song … changes daily. Music has been a part of my life forever. My early love of music and poetry was the start of what became a sincere love for songs. Not just songs in general, but a lover of the lyrics of songs. Unlike anything else, a song has the ability to take your mind places – places that you have been or imagine going. It can instantly reunite you with certain moments of your life. I can find a piece of my life in all my “favorite” songs. You can find joy, heartache, despair, relief, encouragement, etc. I have always felt that life lessons could be learned through a song. But when you dive deeper into a song, you find the lyrics – the true life of a song. The lyrics make a song and the music gives the song a life that can be shared with everyone … forever.
One of my favorite lines in a song growing up was, “I learned more from a 3-minute record, than I ever learned in school.” I have always drawn inspiration from songs. As my baseball coach would make us run laps around the field after a long practice, I would sing, “keep pushing on”- It gave me determination to keep going, no matter how long practice had been or how tired I was becoming. If I found myself getting depressed, I would actually make myself feel worse and recite: “sometimes I feel, like a man in the wilderness … sent away to die, never quite knowing why.” I felt like I could draw certain feelings from this depression, then that poetic side of me could get inspired and find my own words to write as I tried to create a certain mindset. When I was baptized, I used the lyrics to a song in my testimony that was read to the church. They had a profound impact on my life and helped me find comfort in my decision to follow Christ.
For several years, I have been inputing song lyrics into the computer at church so they can be put on the projection screens during our services. Some of these songs, I have sung in church since I was young, some I listen to on the local Christian radio station as I drive, others are new or have been around forever, but are unfamiliar to me. Late one night, I was alone in the church, the lights were turned low and I began to type the following lyrics: “When peace like a river, attendeth my way, when sorrows like sea billows roll; whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to know … It is well, It is well, with my soul. And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight, the clouds be rolled back as a scroll; the trump shall resound and the Lord shall descend, even so, it is well with my soul.” I soon found myself in tears as I read it over and over again, without any music and in the complete silence of the church. That love and the power of words/lyrics/poetry began to stir within my soul, like never before. It was as if the song had come back to life for me. I began again to make myself dive deeper into songs. A lot of time, in my quiet time, I will google lyrics to songs and just spend time reading, not singing.
A few years ago, I heard a song for the first time on the radio - Yes, you guessed it. I grabbed my phone, found a place to park, and in the silence of my car, in a busy parking lot … I began to weep again as I read the following: “You call me out upon the waters, the great unknown, where feet may fail. And there I find You in the mystery, in oceans deep, my faith will stand. And I will call upon Your name, and keep my eyes above the waves. When oceans rise, my soul will rest in Your embrace, for I am Yours and You are mine. Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders, let me walk upon the waters, wherever You would call me. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander, and my faith will be made stronger, in the presence of my Savior.” To this day, I find myself going back to that moment in the car, when every emotion within me, slowly found its way down my face.
My challenge to you … find a quiet place, look up the lyrics to one of your favorite songs and just read. Hopefully, it will become to you, like it has to me … More than just a song.
Just last week, I had the opportunity to take a popular Christian artist to a local TV station and watch him perform his latest song. The only thing I could remember about that moment was the words pounding in my head and my heart. “All that matters, is You make all things new, there’s no disaster that You cannot undo. This world will fade, and life will change, all of this is true, but all that matters … is that I matter to You. All that really matters, is that I matter to You.” Instantly it became more than just a song to me.
Don’t tell my family, but I think I have a new “favorite” song.