October 13th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized 0 comments on “LIGHT UP THE DARK”

“Shadows are fallin’ and I’ve been here all day

It’s too hot to sleep and time is runnin’ away

Feel like my soul has turned into steel

I’ve still got the scars that the sun didn’t heal

There’s not even room enough to be anywhere

It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.”
– Bob Dylan


This song started with the drumbeat: gigantic, bombastic, jock-rock toms. I wanted the drums to

sound like warfare. I had the chords when we started, but Dylan hammered out the guitar riff

without too many suggestions from Will and me. As a modern worship leader, I am well aware

of the ubiquitous trend of “WHOA-OHH” choruses to fill in the middle part of worship songs

where lyrics used to be. However, it was unavoidable for this song. The lyrics are about unity

and glorifying God as one voice, and there’s just no better way to express that than with an easy-

to-sing refrain without any actual words to learn. Sue me. I had to take several passes at this

vocal to get the right attitude and energy, and I think we got it on the third session. Hey, you

can’t rush adequacy!


Man, it’s a dark world sometimes. I don’t just mean spiritually dark, as in “evil”, or “wicked”,

although there’s plenty of that all around us. I mean life can get so cluttered and filled up with

stuff that it’s difficult to function as a person. The arrows of distraction can be so numerous that

they blot out the sunlight of hope and purpose. The NOISE of the world can be so deafening that

we no longer hear the call to be distinct, separate and holy. And, maybe worst of all, we become

so accustomed to the noise that we begin to fear silence.


It’s almost a form of torture for me to take even the shortest of car trips without some kind of

music playing. And, if no music is available, I’m talking or singing as fast and furious as my

mind will allow. Anything to avoid a quiet moment. I crave entertainment and the constant buzz

of technology so much that a genuine, breathable, silent moment might be too much for me to

consume. But that’s where God waits for me. That’s where He waits for all of us. Why do we

fight it so hard?


We are called to be the light of the world, the city on a hill. How can we, when our minds are

preoccupied beehives of confusion, humming with distracted fury? We are not alone. And we are

called to connect, person-to- person, even in small, undocumented, un-photographed and

unfiltered moments that serve only to remind those around us: There is more to this world than

just darkness and noise. There is a God who loves you, and He is moving the universe to be with

you. Be the light in the dark. Let the light shine through the murky haze of hopeless distraction

and constant noise. And let it be love.


In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and

glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16 (NIV)

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