In recent years, Taylor Swift and other songwriters have earned a reputation for writing songs that publically express some very personal feelings or events. But they've got a long way to go to match the heartfelt transparency Keith Green displayed in ...
In recent years, Taylor Swift and other songwriters have earned a reputation for writing songs that publically express some very personal feelings or events. But they've got a long way to go to match the heartfelt transparency Keith Green displayed in "Song to My Parents (I Only Wanna See You There)".
I need to say these things 'cause
I love you so
And I'm sorry you get angry when I say that
You just don't know
That there's a heaven waiting
For you and me
I know it seems every time we talk
I'm only tryin' to just make you see
And it's only that I care
I really only want
Just to see you there
Please try and overlook my
My human side
I know I'm such a bad example
And you know I'm so full of pride
But Jesus isn't like that
No, He's perfect all the way
I guess that's why we need Him
'Cause by ourselves, there's just no way
And it's only that I care
I really, really only just want to see you there
To see you there
Close the doors
They're just not coming
We sent the invitations out long, long, long, long time ago
We're still gonna have a wedding feast
Big enough to beat them all
The greatest people in the world just wouldn't come
Truth is...it's a hard thing to put a desire for a smooth, peaceful relationship aside in favor of the desire for an eternal one. Talking to our parents or other dearly loved family or friends seems scary, but if we really love them, and Jesus is really real, their rejection of Christ should scare us even more.
This has never aspired to be a political blog, but Clement Eaton has made some observations that certainly contain facts and point out a deeper truth.
The voters failed to elect their superior men to office. To obtain the [votes] of the people it was not necessary for a politician to have a superior education or a brilliant mind. Rather, he must be able to sense the common man's discontents, his economic grievances, his prejudices, and his dreams. The successful politician was, as a rule, a vigorous or eloquent speaker, a man who could devise popular slogans and organize political workers, and who gave the common people a feeling of their own importance. As party warfare developed into violent partisanship and as sectional tensions arose, the politician who had strong convictions and had taken a courageous public stand on issues was often pushed aside in favor of a candidate of availability.
In the spirit of Paul Harvey's The Rest of the Story, it may surprise you to learn this is a quote from the book, Henry Clay and the Art of American Politics, and is talking about the voters of the 1830s and 1840s.
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Truth is...What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. (Ecclesiastes 1:9 NIV)
If you go to TimothyKeller.com, you are immediately greeted by a picture of Keller apparently speaking from a pulpit or lectern. In large type, like a banner across the top of the page, is this quote:
The gospel says you are more sinful and flawed than you ever dared believe, but more accepted and loved than you ever dared hope.
That's a pretty good collection of words right there, and it relates to Jesus Quote #22 in two ways: 1. It covers similar ground...talking about how Jesus has an effect on what I think about myself. 2. Its source is the same person.
The Christian Gospel is that I am so flawed that Jesus had to die for me, yet I am so loved and valued that Jesus was glad to die for me. This leads to deep humility and deep confidence at the same time. It undermines both swaggering and sniveling. I cannot feel superior to anyone, and yet I have nothing to prove to anyone. I do not think more of myself nor less of myself. Instead, I think of myself less.
Truth is...While I have often said that God loves us so much He would rather die than live without us...and there is truth in that statement...I am also reminded of something Rich Mullins said: "I grew up hearing everyone tell me 'God loves you'. I would say big deal, God loves everybody. That don't make me special! That just proves that God ain't got no taste. And I don't think He does. Thank God! Because He takes the junk of our lives and makes the most beautiful art."
It might surprise you that in a book titled Pray Big, the author (Alistair Begg) actually spells out something he thinks we should all STOP praying:
I want to erase the two words that shut most of our prayers down. Here they are: "Be with..." If you were to record my prayers, I have a sad suspicion you'd hear a lot of "be with": "Dear Lord, I pray you will be with Tom as he goes to work, and be with Mary also, who's having her wisdom teeth removed on Tuesday, and be with...and be with...and be with...and be with us all. Amen." This is unimaginative. It's limited. It's certainly not spiritually ambitious, like Paul is. And it is, I think, unnecessary. Jesus said, "Behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age" (Matthew 28:20). He's promised to be with Tom and with Mary. It's a bit of a waste to make the sum total of my prayer for them the request that Jesus would do what he already said he'd do, and has already started doing. Search the Scriptures, and you won't find a prayer recorded that just asks God to "be with" his people. The prayers of the saints have far more weighty, far more spiritual concerns.
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Truth is...we can all understand the intent behind our "be with" prayers. Maybe we could expand them into prayers pleading that our friends and family would actually sense God's presence and walk boldly into whatever circumstance they find themselves, knowing that Yahweh, the creator of all that is, loves them and will never give up on them.
Here we are at the seventh song on Keith Green's first album (For Him Who Has Ears to Hear), and Keith is speaking on behalf of Lucifer. I kid you not.
Instead of singing, "Hey, people, Biblical truth is still Biblical truth! Satan is not a fairy tale!", Green puts on the persona of the chief fallen angel and proudly sings "No One Believes in Me Anymore (Satan's Boast)".
Truth is...It wouldn't be fair to expect a song to take the place of C. S. Lewis' The Screwtape Letters in just three minutes and twenty seconds, but this could certainly be Side One, Song One of an album full of music inspired by that classic book.