Friday, 9 January 2009

funny, but it's true I'm...

Like many people I've been playing instruments since I could work out how to use a box as a drum. I have been learning how to play them better - or least being told how to do it - since I was 8 years old (if you include the recorder as an instrument).

However I wasn't really into music that much. Not that I can remember. However, I do remember when I did start getting into liking songs. There used to be the Church of Scotland Christian Bookshop at 123 George Street (the Church of Scotland Hindu Bookshop was next door...) and from aged 12 I remember going to their sale with my Dad during the Christmas holidays from school. They had a bargain tape bin (remember
cassette tapes anyone?) and so Dad used to by tapes from the bin to see what they were like.

It was here that I came across the lyrical stylations of
Randy Stonehill and Steve Taylor. It was not (really) the music that got me going (the first Stonehill tape was Equator, about six years after it came out, and it was the Steve Taylor's live album Limelight that was about three years old as well). It was the lyrics that really connected - a mix of humour, reality, challenge, faith and hope (or something like that).

I have continued to be a fan of these guys (and, in fact, came across a loads of other artists from that bargain bin over the years) but over last three years, one song in particular has been on my mind.

Imagine a 12 year-old boy, bit of a loner, listening to a song about Turning Thirty. You might say odd, but I tell you something, hope is a powerful force. I had high hopes.

So here's the thing. When
Jenny & I lost a baby nearly three years ago, I remembered the words of Turning Thirty. When Jenny was so spectacularly ill during pregnancy with Beth, hospitalised and all that, I remembered the words of Turning Thirty (and a promise that I am sure God gave me about Jenny and I having a family). When Beth was born, I remembered the words of Turning Thirty (and cried).

You see this applies to me today because "tomorrow is my birthday, feels funny but it's true, I'm Turning Thirty". A song first recorded 26 years ago (probably written before then) has been with me for the last 18 years.

I love how songs can capture so much of life, can convey emotion and truth - can take you through a story.

Now I would like you to enjoy
the song*, and think about what you are hoping for. I hope you can trust God with your future - with your hopes and dreams.

A huge amount of love to my beautiful wife, our gift of a baby girl, my loving parents, the friends who make life interesting (and more than simply bearable) and most of all, thanks and honour to Jesus who makes life worthwhile.

How have songs helped you? Are there songs that have left a mark on your life?

Grace & Peace


*I'd rather share the original album version from 1983, but it's best to avoid breaching more copyright than you have to... so here's a live version from the late1980s.


Stewart Cutler said...

What a beautiful song. May your next thirty years be filled with that grace and peace you so dearly believe in. Happy birthday Andy, and many, many happy returns.

Robert McGill said...

Happy Birthday, hope you have a great day!

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The State That I Am In said...

I think most of my blog is about songs and lyrics that have stuck with me. The older I get, the more I realise how God has spoken to me through songs and lyrics by non-Christians and Christians alike to shape me into the person I am today. I guess my blog kind of takes the stance of Paul recognising the human condition as expressed through altars to unknown Gods.

11 January 2009 22:59