Getting Back in Tune

I think we can all agree that something is not as it ought to be,
There is definitely an aspect of our world which is off pitch and out of tune.
There are many theories about the melody that humanity is missing,
But this is what I find the most convincing:

A wise and powerful King once started to sing,
This artist with authority weaved auditory tapestries and galaxies started forming.
He was performing purely for himself,
Until we were birthed in a moment of brilliance.
This music needed to be heard and so his words made mankind.
But we find that humans have a bad tendency to try and steal the show.
And though our purpose was to join in the chorus,
We had decided to be soloists.
We disobeyed the King, creating cacophony in the melody,
And many years later we still see the aftermath.
People have tried to recapture the tune,
But sooner rather than later, their voices turned traitor and messed up the music even more.
So let’s zoom in on this metaphor and explore some history.

In the first century, with a background in carpentry,
A Jewish man named Jesus started to preach a message:
“The Kingdom of God is near.”
He seemed to hear the song of the master,
Calling us out of our disaster.
Problem is, no Jewish pastor was preaching to that rhythm.
What Jesus heard and spoke contrasted with what the radio blasted…
Even on the religious stations!
He spoke boldly and with authority,
As if he knew something other people didn’t.
But he didn’t just flap his tongue,
His lifestyle sung a tune deep from our collective memory,
Reminding of a time before hatred or pride.
He defied any institution that tried to stop the song from spreading.
This wedding music, of union and bliss,
Was missing desperately…so he brought comfort to the lonely.
He healed the sickly,
And quickly gained quite a reputation.
Some said he was trouble maker,
Others a prophet from long ago,
People didn’t know what to make of him.
Our ears were unused to such sacred sounds
And we had fallen down, reduced to manmade music.

He valued every voice, every person was precious.
Many people were pushed to margins,
So that’s where you could find him.
He would remind them that even twisted tongues could become beautiful additions to the song.
They belonged in the cosmic choir,
And the conductor King was itching for their return.
They didn’t need to earn their spot with spotless pitch and tune,
There was room for all to participate.

This sounds great but was highly debated.
Every moral system in the world is based upon the belief that you must prove yourself.
Self-improvement is seen as essential, with singing classes of all kinds being taught.
Humanity has fought for centuries simply to hit all the empty notes.
But beautiful doe-ray-me’s can emerge from filthy throats,
So Jesus cared more about the singer’s heart.
Before you start practicing, you must discover why you sing.
Do you long to bring harmony and glory to the King?
Or is the false promise of popularity what pushes your efforts?
The worst offense to the master’s music has always been the sin of making ourselves the centre.
He would rather an eager but flawed worshipper,
Than a talented entertainer who needs to be the star.
Far too many people attempt to be good cause they think it should result in good things for themselves.
Well, that’s not how it turned out for Jesus.
He had the best voice anyone had ever seen.
It was clean, pure, pristine,
But mean men who ran the religious machine,
Couldn’t stand the thought that untaught and tarnished tongues
Might make it into the choir.
How could the creator, the conductor,
Let such unskilled singers in?
The best trained vocalists resented Jesus cause when he opened his mouth,
It sounded nothing like their song books.
He helped humanity see what the King really looks like…
Inviting us to recognize that he was describing himself.

Though broadcasting it would have made him sound crazy,
He was the son of a virgin lady,
And more importantly, the son of God, the King.
As such, everything belongs to him and he has absolute authority.
Yet he chose to come humbly,
To hum the song among us,
Then be hung from a cross for us.

You see, somebody needed to pay for messing up the music,
Cause every noxious note was a broken heart or a bloody corpse.
This muddy melody is full of every person’s inner jealousy,
Every tendency to trample others for our own benefit.
We all sit guilty.
Since this song encompasses all creation,
Our disorderly oration has hurt everyone and everything.
Our brokenness stings, as our sharp shards cut everyone we come in contact with.
Murderers and rapists aren’t the only noise pollution.
Nobody’s contribution to the chorus could possibly cancel out their clashing.
The arrogant divas were right about one thing:
Cracked voices don’t deserve to sing beside angels…but neither do they!
So Jesus made a way.

The Musician played himself into the messiness of our music,
Then sang flawlessly on behalf of all humanity.
He took the wrath for our insanity,
Our inability to create beauty because ugliness is more profitable.
God knew we had no hope of rescuing ourselves
From the headache and heart break that we’d caused.
Our flaws were far too deep to be fixed with self-help books.

We took two sticks, made them into a crucifix to kill our King.
We spilled his blood across music sheets and Heaven fell silent.
Humanity was so violent towards our creator,
Like guitar strings strangling a rock star.
We are all responsible for that atrocity,
Cause his death was the judgement due on you and me.
He became human to suffer the penalty that he didn’t want to inflict on us.
He subjected himself to the whims of his rebellious subjects,
And we rejected him.
He could have easily sung some notes and smote all of his enemies,
But he let go of his authority and submitted to our mortality.
Reality shook as he took his last breath,
And when his heart stopped, the celestial melody stopped too.

But a moment of silence just makes it more epic when the music swells.
The powers of Hell couldn’t shut up the song for long.
He didn’t belong in the grave cause he was the King of life!
He waved death “Goodbye” cause it would never touch him again.
And when he died,
We were all welcomed inside the choir.
The auditions were cancelled cause Jesus had earned everyone’s way in.
Now no sin or screechy sound will ever disqualify
Any voice who wants to try.
All you require is the desire to get to know the conductor,
And a willingness to learn.
We are all invited to return,
Called to participate in the song that pre-dates mankind’s mess.
We are called to sing to the best of our ability,
As we get better for all eternity.
But death is not a prerequisite for exquisite a cappella.
You see, the choir starts here and now,
Cause it exists wherever people bow before their King.
This orchestra is also known as the Kingdom of God.
It is the place where Jesus’ music in control,
Where we rock and roll to the rhythm of his heartbeat.
Our feet start walking with people through their suffering.
Our hands long to bring blessings to those in desperate places.
Our minds stop finding fault in others
And our eyes start seeing their potential.
Our ears grow accustomed to listening,
And our lips love whistling hope filled harmonies.
Our hearts are ill at ease when other hearts are heavy,
So our backs carry burdens that don’t belong to us.
This is obviously a full body experience.
For those who have made the choice to sing his melody,
The voice of the King rings through every molecule in our being.
It is freeing to be transformed back into the singers that we were originally made to be.
Exciting to bring God glory and praise him for his beauty.

Someday he’ll return and conquer all cacophony.
No more selfishness or jealousy,
Even death will have no potency.
He will globally restore the music back to before we screwed the story.
But happily ever after’s can’t be forced on anybody.
There are dearly loved people determined to continue into chaos,
Many lost individuals with no intention of getting found.
It is astounding how subjects of the King could refuse to join the choir.
Jesus doesn’t desire exclusion,
So he meets us in our confusion,
Begs us to sing in unison rather than scream out screechy solos.
Some say they don’t need a band, that they’re better on their own,
But our abilities are a loan, a gift from the King
And when we sing in a disruptive way,
Someday he’ll have to silence us.
It isn’t fair for selfish soloists to drown out the soulful melody.
Our gifts are best expressed to bless a community.
We’ve been given choices, our voices, to enhance all of creation;
We weren’t made for isolation.
It doesn’t make sense to make music on our own.
It is lonely, lacking in harmony,
And disruptive to the unity that others are trying to establish.
Thankfully the conductor is coming back and he has a knack for creating order out of chaos.
All the hostile voices will be muted,
And we’ll be rooted in better things.
We will sing about peace, love, and joy,
Music shifting with no stagnation.
Our lives will be a song
And God will be our inspiration.