What does your CD/MP3 or IPOD playlist look like? Most Christians will usually rattle off some of the latest popular recording artists like Chris Tomlin or Mary Mary (my favorite), and add that they have a few sermons tucked away as well. But you never hear them talk about the other secular music they have because they are usually afraid someone else will think they are not "spiritual" enough. Sad but true, we are ultra concerned about image.
Not me. If God is not ashamed of how far he has brought me back from a living hell, then I am not ashamed to tell you that my playlist includes a myriad of variety. One of my favorites is Earth Wind and Fire. In the past it was about the rhythm, the flash, now I think of how the lead singer Maurice White has converted to singing Gospel Music, and I hear the words he composed in those songs I loved when I was too under the influence to understand. Let's take the song "In The Stone".
You can dissect songs like we did to the words of the poets we learned about in English Lit, as we attempted to understand what they really meant. What were they thinking as they so brilliantly wrote those sonnets? More importantly, what do we hear, what thoughts cross our mind as we read or listen? It can tell a lot about the content of our character, and what really exists within our hearts as we interpret. Some songs bring up memories we would just as soon forget, others put us in a difficult mind frame (I also love Barry White but I am presently eliminating him from my playlist because of what thoughts his songs bring to mind). Other songs inspire us as this song does to me.
Having listened to that song "In The Stone" over and over again, I am convinced Maurice was looking at the Ten Commandments, albeit from a somewhat altered state of mind back then, but what I hear is truth. Please read these words and let your mind wander a moment:
"I found that love provides the Key - unlocks the heart and souls of you and me
Love will love to sing your song, Love is written in the stone
Every man I meet is walking time, Free to wander past his conscious mind
Love will come and take you home - Love is written in the stone
Do you believe my friend in what you claim, people of the world all doubt the same
Bringing questions of their own - truth is written in the stone
In the stone you'll find the meaning why you are not standing tall
In the stone the light is shining, forever touching all
Life experiences a passing day, time will witness what the old folks say
Getting stronger every day, strength is written in the stone
Deep inside our hearts for us to keep, lies a spark of light that never sleeps
The greatest you have ever known, Yea, is written in the stone"
I have listened to this song so many times now and it has brought me such enlightenment that indeed, truth and love is written in those commandments. I envision Moses in the form of Charlton Heston walking down from the mountain with his hair standing straight up thinking God has just given him the formula to love. To love God and your fellow man by not harming yourself or your neighbor. This must have been the way God tried to show his people love before Jesus came, and like we often do, they missed the point entirely, as they did with Jesus.
Read them. It reads like a love song, not a list of do's and don'ts. Actually on that tablet or stone that they were written on "the light is shining, forever touching all.” The words "Truth Is Written In The Stone" remind me of Jesus own words, "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." And what was his statement before he echoed those great words.........If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. And what was he teaching? What was written in the stone? And who was he? (Eph 2:20) ...the chief cornerstone (the foundation of our faith).
May be that my perspective here is hard to follow for those who have never been far away from God, but to me we can see him in all things, we can take what was previously a stumbling block and use it for a stepping stone because our hearts have totally changed.
Please always be yourselves, God never chose you because you were ordinary. Truth is written in the stone, and the real truth is that you are an extraordinary work of His art. His love is now written on the tablet of your heart.
Glenn is an ex-Marine Viet Nam vet who is also a recovering alcoholic, clean and sober for 30 years. He has been involved in start up and ongoing recovery ministry at North Atlanta Church and Campus for the last two decades. He has a passion for outreach and to spread the message that the answer to lasting and fulfilling recovery from addiction is in a relationship with Jesus Christ. He and the ATB team are available to assist in your questions or needs on an individual basis and will do so maintaining complete confidentiality. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.