The day I stopped singing, people started asking me imposing questions. “What’s wrong?” “Who hurt you?” “Why’d your song die?” Being the ever-ready, people-pleaser, I tried — I really, really tried — to sing just to get the people off my back. I tried smiling while I sang my favorite hymns. I tried faking having a song in my heart.
I couldn’t do it, though. The song was dead. At 20 years old, I no longer found a reason to sing upon waking up. There was no joy. There was no peace. Jesus felt like a childish figment of my imagination. Every powerful, Christ-centered truth I had relied on throughout my childhood was very much paralyzed in my life. My song had died. I felt helpless in my attempts to act as if it had not.
Sin is not a placid monster to play with. My life had become proof that selling your soul to a lie takes away every ability to experience peace –let alone live in it. My heart’s joy and peace were once upon a time so abundant I couldn’t help but sing everywhere I went. It was in music I found intimacy with Jesus which took my breath away with its beauty. Living in sin killed that intimacy.
Once, while standing in a empty wooden cabin, my comrade within the sin mockingly told me to, “… sing something and make [him] believe I meant it.” All I knew were hymns, and somehow, all I remembered from my childhood was “Amazing Grace.” As my tongue struggled to remember the words, my heart pled with my mind to treasure the joy.
I couldn’t. It was just a song. It was merely an exercise to test the acoustics in my friend’s cabin. I had wandered away from the Lord, and my song did not follow.
Yesterday, seven years later, I stood with fellow Christians singing “Come Thou Fount.”
Prone to Wander, Lord I feel it! Prone to leave the God I love! Here’s my heart, Lord, take and seal it. Seal it for thy courts above.
My heart nearly burst with the memory of the dead joy in such a song mixed with the current reality of my redemption. My song is back. My Lord is not dead. God has finally revived my heart’s song.
These songs hold sweeter truth simply because I understand the price paid in order to bring me Home.