Thursday, February 17, 2011

By your side

Tenth Avenue North "By Your Side" from Provident Label Group on Vimeo.

I love everything about this song. The truthful lyrics; the unhurried metering; the rise-and-fall simplicity of the melody. I could listen to it over and over again.

It's the video and its added sound bites that I'm not so keen on, because it seems to send the subtle message that God is "by your side" only if you've lost your home to a hurricane, fire or similar catastrophe.

Which, I will never dispute, he is. And I am not disputing that the crisis relief organisation that produced this video does fine work.

It's only that the video doesn't do justice to the wide sweep of grace the song refers to. Because it doesn't take your being caught in a state-wide flood to get the Almighty's attention. The point is, wherever you are, he's there. Even in the situations that don't make for so much dramatic camera footage.

Like being stuck for eight years in what seems to be a career dead zone, and feeling too old -- and too scared of making your wife and kid suffer even more -- to make any change drastic enough to get you out.

Or finding yourself back in the very same section, and physical location, of the rat race you'd put all of your resources into escaping.

Or facing the end of a relationship that took up the second half of your 20s, blinking in disbelief and trying to navigate this new, lonely landscape.

Or waking up in a life that's got all the right boxes ticked, having all that you ever asked for and yet feeling that it's not what you wanted.

He's by your side there, too.

Wherever "there" is for you.

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