words for easter
The mystery, horror and hope of this season – so central to Christian faith – is something that I have struggled to find ways to sing. How to understand the meaning(s) of the cross… how to SING this… continues to be a challenge for me.
On Monday we had a great session in the studio, recording a new version of “You’re Not Alone” with Charlene Nafziger on piano. The timing of the session hadn’t really struck me until we started recording this song, all about solidarity in suffering – our solidarity with each other, and God’s solidarity with us. Doing this at the beginning of Passion Week was especially moving for me, and especially with the recent awareness of new suffering and pain in the lives of a number of people I know.
I received a note this week from someone saying that she and her family are spending time with my song “For You All Things Are Possible” – a setting of Jesus’ words during his time of struggle in Gethsemane, just before his crucifixion. The conviction that “for you all things are possible,” and yet the intense wrestling match between “please take this cup from me” and “not my will but yours”…
“Lofty Words,” the last track on my latest CD, is a setting of 1 Corinthians 2, and includes these words:
I have decided that I know nothing
Nothing but Jesus, and Jesus crucified.
What kind of wisdom is this, you may ask me
What kind of power can be revealed in one who died?
There is power revealed in weakness
There is Spirit in this mess
This is far from human wisdom
It’s the power of God I guess…
And I hadn’t really thought of “Infiltrating the World” as an Easter song, but as I wrote an e-mail today, and debated what to say, I realized that this lyric said it:
I pray that you’ll be strengthened for all that lies ahead
And I pray we’ll pay attention to what the Spirit says
As we’re not-so-secret-agents in the ancient urgent cause
Of the One who died and rose again, infiltrating the world with the love of God…
Those lyrics represent a little bit of my struggle, anyway, and my prayer for you, and for all of us, this Easter.