The Easiest – And Hardest Song to Sing

THERE’S a song we sometimes sing that has a powerful chorus line –

That’s why we praise Him, that’s why we sing
That’s why we offer Him our everything
That’s why we bow down and worship this King
Because He gave His everything
Because He gave His everything…

That’s an easy song to sing.  At least it is at first…

He gave His everything?”   That is documented and verified twelve thousand times over.   Leaving the idyllic ecstasies of heaven to be birthed in a slobbery animal feeding trough.   Spending 33 years in this cesspool of corruption and malevolence, taking the absolute worst and ugliest it had to offer.   Living in a perilous culture of religious vampires hellbent on trapping Him, incriminating Him, demonizing Him and assassinating Him from the minute He was born.   Providing us the example of how to resist any temptation that comes our way.   Showing us how to honor the will of the Father in any and every circumstance, even when those circumstances called for washing the grimy feet of a bunch of guys who were about to betray Him, abandon Him and swear having never known Him; being dragged into illegal courtrooms, having a crown of thorns condescendingly gouged into His skull, being stretched out for Roman flogging posts and being brutally executed on a bastard criminal’s cross as an innocent man as His most vicious enemies jeered Him from down below.   Love and forgiveness overflowing from that heart, so beautiful and sacred and pure, until it beat no more.   Living and laboring at this very moment in time with every fiber of His power to intercede for us and fiercely silencing the accusations Satan hisses against us day and night.

He did it all to set us free from our sins, from our past, from the Accuser, from hell.   From ourselves…

Think about being one of those condemned deplorables just about to walk The Green Mile to the electric chair – and in steps the Man joyously strapping Himself in and riding the lightning so you won’t have to.

It’s the easiest song on earth to sing.   That’s why we praise Him.  That’s why we sing.   Yes!  He hastened to our rescue, giving literally every last drop of His blood, sweat and tears for us (see Hebrews 5:7).

Because He gave His everything
Because He gave His everything…

But it’s also a difficult song to sing.

If you’re on Sunday morning autopilot, if you’re thinking about Cowboys-Packers or concentrating on hitting all the right notes, there’s nothing to it at all.   But when the weight of those words is grasped and realization sets in that you’re using them to instruct others, that’s a whole other story.

That’s why we offer Him our everything?”   On what planet is this taking place?

We won’t even bow down and worship this King.   That requires too much reverence and humility and discomfort from us.   We’ll worship standing tall and proud because that’s convenient and we look good doing it.   But forget about bowing our knee before His throne.   That’s what Catholics do at mass.  That’s what the Muslims do when they pray to Allah.   We can’t look anything like them…

Oh, God forgive us.   We don’t know what we’re doing.   Sometimes we don’t even know what we’re singing

That’s why we offer Him our everything
That’s why we bow down and worship this King
Because He gave His everything

Whenever I hear those words, I hang my head and begin to weep.   Because He gives His absolute maximum for me while so many times, I have given Him the bare minimum.

That’s a hard song to sing for a culture that thinks worship is a weekly, monthly or in many cases, an annual thing you have to put on expensive clothes to do.   That acts like God lives in the cathedral they get all dolled up for, thinking that to leave the cathedral is to leave the presence of God for the remainder of the week.

That’s a painful concept to stomach for a culture that designates Sunday and Sunday alone as “The Lord’s Day” and anoints the sanctuary as “The Lord’s House;” more than implying that all the others are “My Day,” once our hour-long vacation from self-indulgence hurriedly reaches its eager end at the closing prayer.

Troy Niedfelt writes, “An hour on Sunday morning, an hour on Sunday night and an hour on Wednesday and we say, ‘I’ve done my duty and now I’m free to go until next Sunday.’  168 hours in a week and we so often say ‘Here are 3, gracious God that I will devote to You,’ and the remaining 165 we gluttonously devour for ourselves.”

We’re a culture that use phrases like “You can’t swear in church, you can’t do that in church;” more than implying that once we step out of those doors, we’re free to conduct ourselves in any manner we wish, entirely unaware that the cathedral we occupy is no more sacred than the men’s room at Texaco and that everything we say and do happens at church, in the Holy of Holies of the temple of the Living God.

Oh, God forgive us…

God forgive me of giving Him the bare minimum – when before the world was created, He chose a dead dog like me to set it ablaze with the brilliance of His luminosity; designing me in my mother’s womb, desiring that I would come to love Him and to know Him with all of my heart, with all of my soul, with all of my mind and with all of my strength.

In the meantime, I rejoice in His patience as I mature with all the rest.  That’s what makes the song all the more endearing.

If we are to love our fellow man enough to go the second mile for them, then how much more are we to love the Man who walked the second, the third, the fourth and the fifth mile down The Green Mile for us?

Because He gave His everything
Now, let us together give our everything

Shalom.

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