Friday, February 26, 2010

Celtic Thunder - Hallelujah

I just recently downloaded Celtic Thunder’s new album, “It’s Entertainment!” To my amazement, one of the songs they perform on this new album is, “Hallelujah!” (And Keith Harkin is still a hottie!) This is my 3rd post that the song “Hallelujah” has been featured on (the first post from 10/10/06 and the second post from 5/23/08.) This song has always had a special place in my heart. Certainly it speaks to the darkness, the sorrow, and the tragedy that reside there and the hope and faith of overcoming it, but it’s more than just that. It speaks to all that I have been blessed with as well.

One of the things that has always fascinated me about the story of King David was how tragically flawed his character and thus many of his actions were. David was God’s anointed - God’s favored one – yet David commits horrible sins against God in sleeping with another man’s wife, and then essentially having that other man killed. Although David suffers greatly for his sins, God doesn’t lose favor with David – he remains king, and his bloodline will eventually include the Christ. I find it very comforting that no matter how much of a disappointment we may be, God still loves us for who we are – imperfect beings.
Jesus said to him, "'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' This is the first and great commandment. A second likewise is this, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments." (Matthew 22:37-40)
Though I certainly don’t deserve it, and I am fully aware that I’m not as grateful as I should be for it, but God has truly blessed me with a very rewarding life, more so than most in this world. My greatest, reoccurring sin and flaw is that I don’t place God above all things in my life – I’m too concerned and caught up in my own affairs. And though I do try to change this each morning as I start the day, the monotony of daily life brings me back to being too focused on me, and only in hindsight as I reflect on my day before I go to bed do I realize that I’ve failed miserably once again. Nonetheless, God continues to bless me each and every day.

I certainly have trouble with the second part of Christ’s commandment too, much for the same reason – I’m too focused on my own life. I don’t let the people I love the most know how I feel nearly as much as I should because I don’t think to do it – I’m too busy – too busy with me.
Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen
I try to remember this prayer each day, but it somehow manages to get lost through day – and again only in hindsight at the end of the day to I realize that it escaped me. And still even though I definitely am not worthy of it, God continues to bless me each and every day.

So yes, there is one word I always have when I feel scared, feel despondent, feel fantastic, feel wonderful, feel things are too good to be true, feel things can’t get any worse, feel ashamed, feel like a failure, or feel broken – “Hallelujah!”

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