Sunday, February 18, 2018

More on 40




SONGS IN MY HEAD

Earlier I posted an entry from 2016 in which I recapped the number forty. I felt that at the time this was still something missing from the entry and so I headed off to Mass hoping for some inspiration. As I was quietly reflecting on the readings for the day and on the number 40, it hit me, U2's song forty. Pardon me as I am one of those people that has heard countless songs over my years both as a youth and an adult and never really looked at the lyrics or really heard the song for its meaning.  Songs were just music that passed through my lifetime.  I believe that when we are really ready to hear something it will come to us. Unfortunately that is sometime true in our relationships those close to us. But I deviate from my intent. 



DESERT HIGHWAYS

So as I sat in the pew I was reminded also of Interstate 40 which used to be old Route 66 in California which runs from the high desert city of Barstow into Arizona and beyond. Along Interstate 40 the landscape is barren, rocky, and exceptionally dry. There are but a few places one can stop from Barstow to Needles on the two plus hour drive. There is little to see except an occasional bird.  I could imagine Jesus in this unforgiving landscape facing the various temptations and as with wild animals. I also imagined St Anthony wrestling with the various wild animals as he attempted to overcome the desires that seemed to attack his incessantly in his time in the desert. I was then brought back to the song Forty.

FORTY

The song is based on Psalm 40 with its theme of gratitude and thanksgiving.  Although the song is pretty much focuses on the verse anyone who has been to a U2 concert can remember the throng of people singing in chorus the lyrics usually as the concert ends. It is quite a spiritual experience.  A closer look at the psalm sees a reflection on our travels during Lent.

In verse 13 the psalmist is overcome with the sense of sinfulness. In a sense much of one's Lenten journey is both asking God to make us aware of our sinfulness, then for repentance, and for God's grace to deliver us. From this we sing a new song, a song of renewal. We have been brought from the pit, our own sinfulness and given a foundation to stand on. The question is how long will we sing this song?

U2 FORTY
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1XzHlySYR_Y

Lyrics
I waited patiently for the Lord
He inclined and heard my cry
He brought me up out of the pit
Out of the mire and clay
I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song
How long to sing this song
How long to sing this song
How long, how long, how long
How long, to sing this song
He set my feet upon a rock
And made my footsteps firm
Many will see
Many will see and fear
I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song
How long to sing this song
How long to sing this song
How long, how long, how long
How long, to sing this song

Songwriters: Adam Clayton / Dave Evans / Larry Mullen / Paul Hewson
40 lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

1 comment:

  1. Love this song! Thanks for reminding me. Great one to lead us into Lent.

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