Empty-handed but alive in your hands…
I was listening yesterday evening to the fantastic concert that Delirious? did in Bogota singing Majesty in Spanish to 200,000 Colombians. If you have not heard it, watch the clip. It has been a well known song in UK Christian circles for the last 5 years – I have sung it and led with it, despite its huge range and near-unsingability in some congregations. But for the first time last night I heard the words again – “empty handed but alive in your hands” and thought again what a huge privilege it is to be a Christian, chosen and redeemed and kept in the hands of a God who doesn’t much care whether we bring anything to him or not, just that we come, and keep coming.
Yesterday I was as empty-handed as I have felt this year, longing for things I could not achieve or control, and losing sight of all that God has already achieved for us in school, with me or despite me. A friend (of the best type) rang me later and restored my perspective, but only after I had used this song to “position myself” before the enormous God who watches over me and controls my destiny, keeping me safe and blessing all those I love.
And then as I was finishing the day, I read this lovely short Sabbath poem by Wendell Berry (from The Timbered Choir). There is so much we can do, and then we have to leave it and pray God’s blessing on it as we rest. This is how creation is ordered, so that we may come to rely not on ourselves, but on God.