Encouragement for a lifelong journey of faith

Category: Praying with Peace Songs (Page 2 of 2)

February 1, 2017 – Ain’t no fortunate one

This week we’re using a variety of songs as aids to our prayers. Singing and praying often go hand in hand.  These songs are peace themed, meant to help us pray for the peace of Jesus in our lives and in our world.

Today’s Bible reading and an excerpt

Read Psalm 120

Too long have I lived
among those who hate peace.
I am for peace;
but when I speak, they are for war.

Today’s song and an excerpt

Fortunate Son by Creedence Clearwater Revival Lyrics

“Some folks are born silver spoon in hand
Lord, don’t they help themselves, oh
But when the taxman comes to the door
Lord, the house looks like a rummage sale, yes
It ain’t me, it ain’t me, I ain’t no millionaire’s son, no
It ain’t me, it ain’t me; I ain’t no fortunate one, no
Some folks inherit star spangled eyes
Ooh, they send you down to war, Lord
And when you ask them, “How much should we give?”
Ooh, they only answer More! more! more! yoh
It ain’t me, it ain’t me, I ain’t no military son, son
It ain’t me, it ain’t me; I ain’t no fortunate one, one”

More thoughts for meditation

This song is kinda a prayer already, invoking the “Lord” four times while describing the greed of the powerful that disregards life and sends young men to war. For some of us this is easy to feel. For others of us it might be more difficult to feel along with this song because maybe we are fortunate sons, born with some white American male privilege, or maybe you are a military son, born into a soldier’s family or in the military yourself. Or maybe it’s hard to identify because you’re a daughter and not a son, the lyrics don’t fit exactly, and the pressures of military enlistment aren’t as pressing for you as they were for 1960’s young men. I still hope you can hear the denunciation of greedy violence in this song and go along with it, saying “no” to being its son/ daughter, calling on the Lord to be your true Parent in the face of it.

One of our pastors, Rod, had some more to say about this song on his blog

Pray

Lord, It ain’t me, it ain’t me; I ain’t no fortunate one.

Today is Brigid Day! Visit this notable spiritual ancestor at our sister site: Celebrating Our Transhistorical Body.

 

January 31, 2017 — My peace I give to you

This week we’re using a variety of songs as aids to our prayers. Singing and praying often go hand in hand.  These songs are peace themed, meant to help us pray for the peace of Jesus in our lives and in our world.

Today’s Bible reading and an excerpt

Read John 14

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Today’s song and an excerpt

My Peace by Woody and Arlo Guthrie Lyrics 

“My peace my peace is all I’ve got that I can give to you
My peace is all I ever had that’s all I ever knew
I give my peace to green and black and red and white and blue
My peace my peace is all I’ve got that I can give to you
My peace, my peace is all I’ve got and all I’ve ever known
My peace is worth a thousand times more than anything I own
I pass my peace around and about ‘cross hands of every hue;
I guess my peace is justa ‘bout all I’ve got to give to you”

More thoughts for meditation

Woody and Arlo Guthrie are favorites of peaceniks from the 20th century. For decades their songs provided solace and rally cries during the bloodiest era the world has ever seen. The Guthries crafted this song from the words of Jesus, occasionally giving him credit for the inspiration of the song.

Pray

Jesus gave us his peace, so you could sing this as if you are meditating on the words Jesus says to his disciples: “My peace I give to you.” Or, sing the song and let Jesus be that Peace that you give, like Paul said, “He is our peace” (Ephesians 2:14)

 

Today is Menno Simons Day! Visit this significant spiritual ancestor at our sister site: Celebrating our Transhistorical Body.

 

January 30, 2017 — Study war no more

This week we’re using a variety of songs as aids to our prayers. Singing and praying often go hand in hand.  These songs are peace themed, meant to help us pray for the peace of Jesus in our lives and in our world.

Today’s Bible reading and an excerpt

Read Isaiah 2

He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.

Come, descendants of Jacob, let us walk in the light of the LORD.

Today’s song and an excerpt

Down by the Riverside, An African American Spiritual, Lyrics

“Gonna lay down my sword and shield
Down by the riverside (3×)
Gonna lay down my sword and shield
Down by the riverside
I ain’t gonna study war no more
Study war no more
Ain’t gonna study war no more”

More thoughts for meditation

The timelessness of African – American Spirituals are a testimony to their brilliance. This song dates back to before the Civil War, sung by enslaved blacks in the South. It pairs the prophesy of Isaiah with baptism, and rests in promises of freedom from slavery and freedom from violence/war. It’s a veiled refusal to fight in the Civil War for the slavers, while looking towards freedom from slavery beyond the River. Historians say the “River” is seamlessly literal and metaphorical. It’s simultaneously a river of baptism, the River Jordan, and the Ohio River, beyond which the fleeing slave would find a land of freedom, It’s also the hope of the land beyond this one when Jesus returns to rule, in a land where there is no more war or violence.

Pray

Sing with the prophets and with the words of those enslaved in American South, whose songs carried more hope than any others.

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