[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/119894512" params="color=ff6600&auto_play=false&show_artwork=true" width="100%" height="166" iframe="true" /] God Moves in a Mysterious Way was written by William Cowper in 1774. The story behind the song is that William was struggling with depression and one night had decided to go out to the river to kill himself. He called a cab, but on the way to the river there was a crazy amount of fog. So the cab driver couldn't find his way to the river. Frustrated, William told the man to pull over, and when he got out he was surprisingly at the front of his own house. He later pinned these words talking about God's sovereignty,
"His purposes will ripen fast, unfolding every hour, The bud may have a bitter taste but sweet will be the flower,"
I was introduced to this hymn when John Piper referenced it in a sermon I was listening to. It intrigued me so I searched it out. Writing this arrangement was very smooth and came together quite nicely. I love songs like that, but it felt like it was missing something. So I thought for a long time about what the true message of the hymn was. If I could boil it down into one idea, what would that be? That's when Romans eight started to turn in my mind and heart. In my opinion, I thought this hymn was teaching us that God's ways are not ours. And he does things that we don't understand, and we don't have the ability to comprehend. Sometimes we don't even get the blessing of looking back and realizing why he did what he did. But we know that, despite that, God is always for us and never against us. Going through difficult seasons of life can make it feel like God is against you. It's really tough when it feels like your prayers don't go past the ceiling. So how do we know that God is for us? We know that because of the cross. We can forever look to God, in child-like trust and faith, because we know that if he sent his son, Jesus, to die on the cross in our place, he is always and forever for us. If he has accomplished the more difficult thing (dying on the cross) then he will most assuredly be able to all other things. As Roman's eight would say, "No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us." This doesn't mean that bad things, sometimes really bad things, do not happen to us. Just keep reading in Romans eight. Believers are getting killed by the sword! But we know
"..if God is for us (which is proven for us on the cross) who can be against us?"
Micah Blaylock is the contemporary worship pastor at White's Chapel Methodist Church in Southlake, Texas. Our friendship goes all the way back to our days at Dallas Baptist University. I've played bass with him for years and he even helped me out last year with a music project I created for my school district. He has, maybe only second to David and Jillian, asked more about and prayed for Selena, than anyone I know. He just cares. It has meant so much to me over these years, to tell him stories of our Guatemala adventures and our struggles too. He has always been quick to listen and pray for me and Selena. When I called him about this project he said I didn't even need to explain; he was in.
I hope this song encourages us. The first time I heard a solid mix of the ending I was on my daily bus commute back to Spring from Houston, and I wanted to stand up on the bus and yell, "YES!" That would have been super awkward but that's what was rising up in me. I hope that anyone who has lived life a little, and knows that it's not easy, and we go through very difficult things, feels that same thing rising up in them on the outtro of this song. To that end, God Moves in a Mysterious Way.