This blog is a personal testimony celebrating a luminous experience on my spiritual  journey.  These kinds of moments often happen when I am introduced to new songs I have not heard before.  A song entitled “Hopeful Song” by a group called “Going to the Sun” was such a song for me.  The YouTube video features a group of musicians who are totally into their performance.  The lead singer, I believe, was singing about his own inner pain, declaring the need for a “hopeful song.” I can testify that I was moved to tears by the energy and passion of their performance.  

The chorus goes like this: “Oh, someone sing a song/Oh, of better days to come/’Cause I know this isn’t right/You can’t hold back the light for very long/Somebody sing a hopeful song tonight.”  Other lines throughout the song go like this: “Have I become predictable/A story told a hundred times before… A driver who will carry me/from rocky roads to sunny golden shores… Could I get up, could I get better/Could I have faith in sunny weather/Let’s light the night on fire/And laugh at the shadow that surrounds.”  

Why did this particular song from a relatively unknown group have  such an impact on my soul?  It was the energy of the group, their countenance, and the hope in the song.  It seems to me the group was celebrating a spiritual breakthrough.  It mirrors my own struggle with the darkness all around and within me… “You can’t hold back the light for very long.”  The group was singing a “hopeful song” about better days to come.  They cry out in passion, “Somebody sing a hopeful song tonight.”  I believe “better days” are coming. 

As I share how this song has spoken to me, you might reflect on how different songs have spoken to you in the past. For me it meant focusing on the light.  Isaiah encourages us “walk in the light of the Lord” (Is. 2:5), since “the light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:5).  

1)  Have I become predictable, a story told a hundred times before?  Even as I am living in darkness, I know this isn’t right.  I hold on to the promise of Isaiah 42:16, “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth.  These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.”  In these latter years of my life, I spend time in the prophets, asking God, “What are you wanting us to know from your prophets during a time of darkening shadows and uncertain light?”  God will show us light and make our way smooth.

2)  Could I get up, could I get better, could I have faith in sunny weather?  Of course, the answer is “Yes.”  Isaiah prophesied, “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned” (Is. 9:2).  Again, the prophet declares toward the end of his book, “Arise, shine for your light as come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.  See, darkness covers to earth and thick darkness is over the people, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you” (Is. 60:2).

3)  Let’s sing a hopeful song tonight.  Isaiah exhorts us to “walk in the light of the Lord” (Is. 2:5)  Why? “Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more: the Lord will be your everlasting light” (Is. 60:20).