Saturday, April 23, 2011

Dancing in my Living Room

This morning I woke up with Third Day's version of "Creed" in my head. This tends to happen about twice a year, even though it's been ages since I've listened to Third Day on a regular basis. I usually find the song online and casually listen to it as I make breakfast or something. But as I listen to the lyrics, I usually have to stop what I'm doing. The power of the somewhat simple and straightforward lyrics always get me. It's hard to explain really. It's kind of like when you hear something that really strikes a chord in you and you can't explain why in the moment, but you believe it so strongly with all your heart that you want to yell and shout for joy. Or you get a feeling of surreal peace in your heart that all you can do smile like a dummy. And not because someone told you you should, or even that you yourself thought it was the right thing to do. You just believe. And in that moment all the stupid worries about this scary life disappear. Yesterday's reality of 'not enough money, not enough time, not enough bla bla bla' washes away like it was never there. You can say it's emotion. And I will probably agree with you if you do! Theologically, we would say it's a response to God's outpouring of love. A response to the life of Christ poured out for sinners by a Father full of grace and truth and revealed to us by the Holy Spirit.

Sure, this is a fitting time of year to think about God. For the Christian this is a significant weekend. Last night a bunch of us gathered in a grassy field for a somber evening of reflection upon Christ's death on the cross. We sat on lawn chairs, on blankets, on grass. We listened to scripture and thought and prayed as the hot sun beat down on our faces and weird bugs I've never seen before landed on our legs. At the end, many of us stood up and walked to a nearby table and ate a piece of bread dipped into wine to symbolize something much more than simple food and drink. Those who came to the table were of all ages, all races, all backgrounds. Tomorrow morning many of those same people will gather in a church building. Some of us will be wearing nice Easter clothes with smiles on our faces, but underneath we'll be the same people who need that bread and wine more than we know. Except Sunday we won't be as somber, maybe not quite as reflective, but we'll rejoice in the hope of all hopes- Christ is dead no longer. Isaiah 55 says come, "Come all who are thirsty!" Come you who are afraid, who are skeptical, who are wary of anything religious. Come you who've done wrong and you who've thought you've always done right. Come you who are disabled, are weary, are lost. I will readily admit that I am one of the above, and I will be one who is running to get a taste of peace, of joy, and of the celebration. And I speak namely of not just coming to a building to hear a prepared sermon, but coming to the raised Christ.

There might have been a tear or two today as I listened to good ol' Third Day. Maybe a little dancing in the living room. Definitely a cheesy smile as I finished my cereal. Oh don't worry, the shades were drawn. I am just thankful for a reminder of God's love on this hot cloudy morning here in Texas.

The lyrics of the song I'm talking about are mostly derived from the Apostles Creed, a statement of faith of sorts, dating back from the 2nd century. You can listen to it here:
http://listen.grooveshark.com/#/s/Creed+live+In+Portland+Me+/24VlaL?src=5

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