Monday, January 22, 2018

Come and join us!

Do you remember what He's called you out of? 
Do you remember where you were? 
Let us not take advantage of His love 
Lest we forget that we have been forgiven 
Without Him we can do nothing 

We gathered around an early evening backyard campfire at the home of brand new friends in Idaho.  Song time was about to commence.  As the guitar was being tuned, we asked our hosts if they knew any Petra songs.  

Eyes lit up, and a comment about not having heard a Petra song in years was made.

Red is the color of the blood that flowed
Down the face of Someone who loved us so
He's the perfect Man, He's the Lord's own Son
He's the lamb of God, He's the only One
That can give us life, that can make us grow
That can make the love between us flow

At evening devotions with friends in southern Mexico, while sharing favorite songs, our kids unanimously declared we must sing “Grave Robber”.   And so we did.  And now it is one of our friends’ favorite songs as well.

Many still mourn and many still weep
For those who they love who have fallen asleep
But we have this hope though our hearts may still ache
Just one shout from above and they all will awake
And in the reunion, what joy we will see
Death will be swallowed in sweet victory

Powerful words, powerful music, powerfully sung.  It only seemed fitting to us as newlyweds back in the ‘80s.  Songs by the christian music group Petra held common themes of valuing what God values, not being deceived, having faith in an almighty God, depending on him, praying.  

I lived an illusion with no one else to blame
I found a solution when I called on His name
I may not have money or riches 
but I found something better to be
To be a servant of Jesus, 
He means more than the world to me
I just want to be, I just want to be 
I just want to be His disciple

These were ideas with which we were not raised.  As we wore the dreaded “horse hoof” sounds into the cassettes by repeated play, the words and lessons were being impressed on our hearts. It was a means God used to encourage us in truth that is despised by the world.

Some say this life I live is only foolishness 
No waiting pot of gold in the faith that I possess 
But the treasures of this life will slowly turn to dust 
And this fool will find his gold in the Savior that I trust 

Fool's gold - it's waiting in a crown 
Fool's gold - in a city coming down 
I'll leave the gold I can't afford 
For the higher prize I'm pressing toward 
I'll preach the foolish cross of Christ 
And wait for my reward 
Fool's gold 

As children were added to our family, many of the analogies in the songs took on greater depth:  struggling with our own lack of self-discipline, the need to shift priorities, to care more for pleasing the Lord than pleasing men.  

And it takes so long to see the change
But we look around, and it seems so strange
We have come so far, but the journey's long
And we once were weak, but now we’re strong

As our children have grown, they have learned and loved these songs as well.  Petra put to music many truths, priorities and promises which they have been blessed to know from their earliest days.  

We love figuring out how to play and sing old favorites.  And so the idea grew...a Petra Sing Along night!

Our gracious friends at the Family Vision Library are excited to host this special evening, so we want to get out the word.  

Whether these songs are like old friends to you or you would just like some fresh encouragement from days gone by:  if you are in or near the Saint Louis metro, please come and join us! 

There's a Light over the horizon 
I'll keep walking down this road of hope 
Faithful in my prayer 
There's a Light over the horizon 
Though I may not know what lies ahead 
I know that you'll be there 
You'll be there

You won’t find the polish of seasoned road warriors, but we hope to make noise that somewhat resembles some of our favorite songs.  We will project the words and everyone can sing along.  We pray it will be a night of fellowship and refreshing as we encourage one another and praise the Lord with melodies from our hearts.  

You may be weary, but you gotta be leery 
When somebody says that you will never finish the race 
They can discourage but don't lose your courage 
You gotta narrow the margin and keep up the pace 

You gotta run for the prize
Don't look over your shoulder
Gotta keep your eyes
On the straight and narrow
Gotta run for the prize
There's no time to be wandering
Gotta make your way
Just as straight as an arrow

Please join us on Friday, March 16, at the Family Vision Library.  Bring snacks if you would like. And tell your friends!  

It would be fun and helpful to RSVP and suggest some of your favorite songs for us to consider as we compile our song list.  

More power to ya!