Thursday, November 15, 2012

Music Speaks

I love music. it so much that it might be a requirement for the guy I marry to be musically inclined in some way. Maybe that makes me shallow.

I just think it's powerful.
Music has a way of bringing us back to things, to people... it has a way of penetrating our hearts. It moves us deeply. It leads us into worship. It's a way we can express ourselves when words don't feel like enough. It's motivating,'s never-ending. It caters to each of us at different times, in different moods, in different settings.

Sometimes I'm overwhelmed with my appreciation for music.

Today was one of those days where music brought me back to a moment in time. A memory that I'm not sure I'll ever forget. It was a Wednesday night of camp and campers had just experienced 'The Last Supper' to the Garden of Gethsemane in full. From the Passover Meal, to the washing of feet, to the praying in the garden....each camper, each week walked through this. It included the usual gagging on horseradish and the awkward silence as counselors squeezed their way into tight spaces in order to wash their camper's feet.

The night segued into our open-air Pavilion where all the campers would gather from their individual prayer spots. Each camper had been carrying a small rock with them for two days... a rock that represented their story. They'd each had a chance to share their story with their group. On this night, they were given a chance to surrender their life, their story, to Christ. It was a night to open the door for Christ to intersect, for Him to take over...a reminder that there was so much hope in letting go and giving it all to Him.

Their counselors collected each rock/story in a wooden trough and carried them to the Pavilion with their group trailing behind them. The idea was that they represented Christ in this big metaphor. As each pair of counselors came into the Pavilion, one in front of the trough, one in back... I would direct them to a certain spot. As we waited for them to trickle in, no one spoke...but the music penetrated our souls. By the time all the counselors were present, the shape they were in resembled that of the cross.

It was often a pretty intense night for the campers...but I was too far removed from them to really know all the details of what was going on which each of them. The thing that I vividly remember were MY 'campers' each week: the counselors. They'd come in carrying this uncomfortable trough, sometimes overflowing with 30+ rocks...sometimes scattered with less than ten. Sometimes I'd watch them try to hold back tears, and the unspoken looks exchanged between us told me that something powerful had just happened in their groups with one of their campers.

Sometimes they stood there for a long, long time as we waited for the last of the groups to show up. One night, in particular, seemed especially brutal. Not only was the wait long, meaning the more uncomfortable they got as they bore the weight of these stories...but there was this spiritual heaviness that seemed pressed upon them. As the music played, the words seemed to pour over us. I remember the tears that so many finally let loose, I remember the heaving shoulders, I remember seeing the desperation in their eyes as they looked up... almost as if they were pleading to God. They were prayers I never heard, but I knew they mattered.

I knew they mattered because it was as if in this moment that we all understood the urgency of the message we were presenting that night. It was the only one we could ever share that truly could change a life. It was a message of hope. And in the midst of the tears and the brokenness, there was the cross that made life possible. That makes it possible.

As my iPod randomly shuffled to one of these songs today, I was immediately taken back to this place. I was immediately back to this time where Jesus Christ was all that mattered... and I needed to be reminded of that again. I needed to be reminded that I am carrying His name...'for all of my days, in all of my ways'.

This is the only story that matters: the Gospel.
How does my own story reflect the only one that does...? How does yours?
Jesus, Your name... forever. 
Soak it in for yourself.

How merciful the cross
How powerful the blood

How beautiful Your arms

Open for us

Open for us

No greater love

God's only Son

Jesus, Jesus
No other name
Mighty to save
Jesus, Jesus

By Your wounds we are healed

And You have conquered the grave

And in Your rising, we will rise
To carry Your name
Above every name

I will carry Your name

Carry Your name

Jesus, Your name forever
For all of my days
In all of my ways
Jesus, Your name forever

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1 comment:

  1. I keep listening to this song, wishing my heart wasn't so numb to Jesus.