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There is an Internet meme that gets circulated quite frequently that reminds folks to “Be kind to others. Everyone is fighting some battle that we may know nothing about.” Or something to that effect, anyway. That’s one of the first things that came to mind when I first heard this song. While it’s a good reminder about the interconnectedness of our human relationships, and the grace we ought to be capable of extending to one another, several more listens take it much deeper.

For the most part, this song could be a modern day psalm of lament. There is the hopeful promise rooted in past experience, assuring the psalmist of a companion or partner through it all. But suddenly, it seems the psalmist feels abandoned, turned away from, passed over. The psalmist cries out for forgiveness, for rescue from the depths, “time after time.”

The reflection of raw desperation is not limited only to the psalms, though. The plea of “Please don’t pass be by” recurs throughout Jesus’ ministry, either directly spoken or implied in a number of figures like: the Gerasene demoniac; the woman at the well; the woman with the hemorrhage; blind Bartimaeus; Peter’s mother-in-law; the woman on the verge of being stoned to death. So many more…

Just as easily, these words become our words. When the diagnosis isn’t good; when work cannot be found; when relationships are strained or shattered; when addiction can’t be broken; when depression darkens minds and spirits; we have to acknowledge that we cannot face the war alone. Our strength comes from the Lord. While succeeding in one battle, the war does indeed rage on relentlessly. With God’s help, we emerge from these struggles, trials, challenges, stronger, yet no less in need of one to save us.

 

Song: “The War Rages On”
Artist: Alex Clare
Album: Three Hearts

(Lyrics)

The War Rages On
You’ll be at my side
Through it all
Through hardships unseen
We still survive, fortified

Please don’t pass me by
Can’t you hear me calling out your name
Forgive the things I do
Don’t turn your back when I need you
The War Rages On

When darkness comes
You’re like a burning light
Through it all
When storm knocks me down
Call for me from the depths
Time after time

Please don’t pass me by
Can’t you hear me calling out your name
Please forgive the things I do
Don’t turn your back when I need you

War Rages On I’m still here by your side
Blood of the dawn ends the darkest of nights
War Rages On I’m still here by your side
Blood of the dawn ends the darkest of nights

Please don’t pass me by
Can’t you hear me calling out your name
Please forgive the things I do
Don’t turn your back when I need you
The War Rages On
The War Rages On

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