OUR SONG OF FAITH
We had an inspiring message last Sunday from Rev. David Mundy, our guest preacher on Anniversary Sunday. He encouraged us to keep on finding ways to "Sing Christ's Love Song". He used Paul's counsel to the Philippians as his springboard: focus on "whatever" you can that is positive (Philippians 4:8); and find cause for rejoicing. "Rejoice in the Sovereign One always, and again I say, 'Rejoice!' " (Philippians 4:4). Not so hard to do when life is going well, when our hopes and projects work out, when days run fairly smoothly. More difficult to do when trouble comes, or pain; or when we're feeling down. Then, can we dig deep and find the answer the ancient Hebrews sought when they found themselves as exiles?
"By the rivers of Babylon, we sat down and wept when we remembered Zion (home).
On the willows we hung our harps while our captors taunted us to sing ...
How can we sing our love song in a strange land?" (Psalm 137: 1-4)
Are there ways we can join Dylan Thomas as he stared mortality in the face and wrote:
"Time held me green and dying, though I sang in my chains like the sea." (Fern Hill)?
Yes, we can, God being our Helper. Twelfth-century mystic Hildegard of Bingen was onto it when she wrote: "Don't let yourself forget that God's grace rewards not only those who never slip, but also those who bend and fall. So sing! The song of rejoicing softens hard hearts. It makes tears of godly sorrow flow from them. Singing summons the Holy Spirit. Happy praises offered in simplicity and love lead the faithful to complete harmony, without discord. Don't' stop singing."
In 2003, our newest denominational statement of faith for United Church of Canada believers came out in poetic form, lyrical form. We call it "A Song of Faith". Check it out. You can find it on our united-church.ca website, or I'll see that some copies are available in our church library. It may not be a form that appeals to you as it does to me, but maybe something of the spirit of it and of the Holy Spirit in it may resonate with you and inspire you to somehow keep on singing Christ's love song as you seek to walk in God's ways and serve in God's world.