Godly Interruptions
~ Luke 7: 11 - 17 ~


Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it
stood still. He said, "Young man, I say to you, get up!" (Luke 7:14)


    I know, I know. You're as busy as you can possibly be today, and tomorrow looks even busier. The last thing in the world you need is an interruption to derail you from your agenda. 
    I've lived there. Some days I feel like I'm still living there. But lately, I've been praying about how to embrace the interruptions. And sure enough, God seems to delight in answering that prayer ... with interruptions. But here's one thing I've learned: the interruption can be where God does some of His most spectacular work.
    If you haven't already, familiarize yourself again with the story in Luke 7: 11 - 17. Jesus is having what appears to be a fairly busy day. He's surrounded by His disciples and a large crowd. By all appearances, He's on His way to minister in a town called Nain.
    Then, the interruption occurs. He's met by a funeral procession at the town gate. The dead person being carried out is the only son of a widow. We don't know his age, precisely, but Jesus eventually calls him "young man." Could it have been a child?
    "When the Lord saw [the mother], his heart went out to her ..." (verse 13). The Greek word employed here by Luke is splagchnizomai, meaning "to feel
deeply, to yearn, to have compassion and pity." It's as if Jesus was thinking, "This isn't the way it's supposed to be." Then He does an astounding thing.
He walks up, touches the coffin, commands the young man to rise, and a resurrection occurs! Now understand this: no self-respecting Jew would ever - I mean ever - touch a coffin that contains a dead person. To do so would be total defilement. Yet, that's what Jesus does; He touches (haptomai: to connect or bind, to apply oneself to) and new life emerges.
    Look, I know you're busy. And much of that busy-ness probably centers on the work of your church. But can I challenge you to embrace today's interruptions? To "apply yourself" to some person or situation?
    Who knows, new life just might occur.
                                                                                                      - Excerpted from "In Spirit and In Truth"


Sometimes when we couple a familiar hymn text with a familiar hymn tune that's not always associated with it, the result is a new understanding and appreciation of both the message of the text and the power of the melody. That's what I've tried to accomplish in this anthem, PRAISE, MY SOUL, THE KING OF HEAVEN. 

You probably know the text from any one of a number of different hymn settings, but here I've coupled it
 with the tune, Ebenezer, gave it an energetic and driving feel, and even included a fairly active violin part for some extra color. I like the way this one turned out!

By the way, if you enjoyed CROWN HIM LORD OF ALL! from a few years back, you just might find this one to your liking. I really do try to not be too formulaic in my writing, but sometimes a concept is just too good to not explore again. Give it a listen; you'll see what I mean.