I only recently discovered The Arcadian Wild. This song is one of my favorites so far.
I really enjoyed this version of this classic hymn. Listen for how the tension builds at 1:54 and then breaks when the horns come in at 2:16. Good stuff, right here!
I’ve been listening to this song by Strahan for quite some time now, but I haven’t been able to find a postable video of it until today. Turns out that video has the lyrics in Spanish, so bonus there for you Spanish speakers. For the rest of us I’ve got the original lyrics posted below as well. I resonate with the desperate and honest faith in this song. I hope it encourages you as you wait in the midst of suffering as it has encouraged me.
Your heart is sweet My heart is stone Your voice is quiet My journey long But I'm holding on to your endless love Through all the foggy days Through all the tears I've prayed And I'm breaking through for one touch from you And I am not afraid I am not afraid Your arms are wide My hands are fold Your table long My chair is short You love the poor And I'm destitute But my hope is strong When my joy is you And I'm holding on to the corner of your robe Cause there a power there Before the Gardener's throne And when your mercy breaks through all reckless tears And all depressions cease I am not afraid No I'm not afraid I'm not afraid I am not afraid I am not afraid There's a beauty in our pain Every night has a breaking day We are coloured jars of clay So carry on There's a beauty in our pain Every night has a breaking day We are coloured jars of clay So carry on Carry on Carry on
“Holding On” by Strahan
We don’t have very many contemporary songs written about the end of the age. I appreciate this one by Jess Ray, which combines serious references to Christ’s return with mentions of zombies and EMPs – and puts it all to a driving folk melody.
Will there be zombies? Fires and floods? Will there be an EMP? Moons turned to blood? Blessed is the man If he knows the lamb when he sees him Cursed is the man who has money and food And a place to hide And a head full of knowledge And a heart full of pride Cursed is the man if he does not know the lamb
“There’s Still Time” by Jess Ray
I love this song. I find it to be a good example of using holy imagination to explore true themes that resonate with Scripture and the experience of believers. In it the songwriters craft a fictional conversation between a struggling saint and Jesus. Notice the desperation of the saint, “the devil; Rides on my back every mile; And he won’t take his claws out of my skin; I’m sorry if I’m bleedin'” This broken saint is met by a laughing and welcoming savior, who engages him and then lavishes on him a tour of biblical history and the created universe. The song contains a promise that the struggling saint will be singing with Christ and the angels when “the army comes marching right down from the sky” and that “All of this is Mine! And yours too.” This saint is so beat up he is apologizing to Jesus for bleeding and doesn’t even know how to ask for help. But Christ laughs kindly because the the reality he knows is one in which this struggling saint is the heir of the universe. I love the line, “stuck our tongues out at the earth and slowed its rotation.” Ha! I guess that’s one way to demonstrate being a true heir of the world. The interwoven melody of the older song, “When the Saints Come Marching In,” is great as well. Lyrics below.
He said to me where is your halo Where are your wings your black book bible I’ve lost them all but you know it’s not your fault He asked me how I said 'the devil Rides on my back every mile And he won’t take his claws out of my skin I’m sorry if I’m bleeding' He bent down and wrote it in the sand Made a wave and spelled it out in the ocean Said we’ll be singing those angel hymns all together When the army comes marching right down from the sky 'I can help' is what came from His mouth I’d yell yes please but I’ve never spoken to the clouds The weight it grows everyday ever hour second and eternity He laughed out loud and asked me to explain Forever, no-end, death, and being born again If it’s the universe you want to see, come and take a walk with Me I told myself son you better listen... And we went into the garden and saw Adam die alone Saw a baby in the water floating to a safer home Saw the walls fall to the trumpeters then to Gilead we ran By the time we made it to the top we were out of breath again Then we stood on the moon, moved the craters to make faces Stuck our tongues out at the earth then slowed it’s rotation It was July in the winter before we moved it back to June Passed the speed of sound, the speed of light and the speed of time too and he said, 'All of this is Mine, and yours too'
“Saints” by Poor Bishop Hooper
I listened to this song yesterday on my headphones while prayer walking the bazaar. “No, random Central Asian man, no I’m not I’m not crying, I’m just a foreigner who’s got some, err, dust in his eyes… nothing to see here… (sniffle)”
I’ve bolded the lyrics below that I especially like.
When the day has run its course You are the goodness Oh, my sweetest Friend You are the Avalanche That falls upon us; in the end You are my reward Where all the years have failed us Oh, my sweetest Friend You are the House around us You are the goodness; in the end And everything I ever wanted It is found in You And everything I ever wanted It is found in You Of all the strong and able You are the kindest Oh, my sweetest Friend You are the Avalanche That falls upon us; in the end And everything I ever wanted It is found in You And everything I ever wanted It is found in You My One, my Constant My King, and Brother My home, is ever Where Your heart hovers My One, my Constant My King, and Brother My home, is ever Where Your heart hovers When the day has run its course You are the goodness You are my reward You are the goodness When the day has run its course You are the goodness You are my reward You are the goodness When the day has run its course You are the goodness You are the goodness When the day has run its course You are the goodness You are the goodness -"The Goodness" by John Mark McMillan
I’ve posted the original version of this song in the past, but I really enjoy this remix as well. The lyrics look back, post-death, to the sufferings of this life and the new reality of sorrow turned to gladness.
It is a fitting song for today, when I get to attend a very special wedding. My mom, widowed twenty eight years, is getting remarried. Her new husband is himself a widower, and one of his daughters one of my classmates and friends from high school in Melanesia. As such, it is a very different kind of wedding, where everyone’s thoughts are not only on the bride and groom, but also on the parents and spouses who have departed and gone to be with Jesus. There has been great loss, but there is also new joy.
He makes all things new. This song, and this wedding, provide me glimpses of how he will do this for all eternity.