many, many, many moons ago, when I was in the sixth grade, I had a wonderful and quirky social studies teacher named Coach Adams. He was fun, he genuinely liked middle school kids, and he was a coach and I was an athlete, so we got along well. He was, however, my first true experience with someone with a dry sense of humor. And when I mean dry, I mean desert-seems-like-a-refreshing-place kind of dry. This took some getting used to, but eventually we got along once I realized he really was just teasing most of the time. I remember absolutely nothing very little from his class, as is evident from my World War XVII confessions. What I do remember is that every single day, he began the class by forcing us asking us to complete the following sentence by a man and great coach he admired, John Wooden. Coach Adams would let us know class was beginning by saying “Of all the laws of learning…” and we, as a class would say in unison with utter boredom in our voices “…repetition is the most important.”
Clearly, he was right. I don’t know anything from 6th grade social studies, but twenty-five years later, I can still remember that quote we recited every single day. Repetition can be a great thing.
Or, it can annoy you to no end. For instance, the title of this post is a perfect example of something that can drive one bonkers. And why people choose to follow this tradition while stuck for hours on end in a car, I will never understand.
The phrase “Put your shoes away.” or “Don’t pick your nose.” seem to have been repeated out of my mouth
roughly thirty thousand times quite a bit over the last seven years of my life as a Mom…yet as I type at this very moment, I am looking at two separate pairs of shoes on the floor of my living room, and although my three sweet kiddos are all at school right now insert Hallelujah chorus here I can say with near certainty that one of, if not all of, their teachers have said that exact phrase to them this very morning.
Now, granted, some things are worth repeating. Movies for instance. There are a handful of movies, that, if they come on TV on some random Saturday afternoon, I will watch them again, and again, and again. Do you have some like that? The ones I can think of off the top of my head are “The Wedding Singer”, “Can’t Buy Me Love”, “The Thomas Crown Affair” and probably holding the number one spot is “National Treasure”. Have you seen that last one? It was set in then-current day 2004, and it stars Nicholas Cage
sporting some awful hair plugs and he and his many of his family from generations past have spent a great deal of time searching for a buried treasure. I am pretty sure I learned more about U.S. history from that movie than I did from school. Sad, I know. Anyway…there is one point in the movie where they are holding the actual Declaration of Independence and trying to see if there is a treasure map on the back of it. They are running from the proverbial “bad guys”, (who happen to have a British accent, so clever!) and have hidden out in the Signing Room at Liberty Hall. This was the actual room where our forefathers stood when they lined up to sign this document that would forever change the future of our country. So, here is Nicholas Cage reading this document that has been repeated over and over in speeches and book reports for hundreds of years. He carefully holds it in his hands and then abruptly stops. Shuddering a bit, he has a “moment”. When asked what is wrong, he replies, “Whoa. The last time this document was here in this room, it was being signed.”
I don’t even care much about history and that moment of the movie gets me every time. To think that the very document you are holding in your hand and reading was read aloud hundreds of years ago is truly something.
This got me thinking about my recent PAW time post this week. One of my favorite things about praise and worship is that so often, song writers use Scripture to fill their song with Truth. This, friend, is a blessing.
Because, not only are you encouraged by these song writer’s words, but most importantly, you are being lifted up by the very words of our Holy Bible. And while I am pretty sure that the apostle Paul wasn’t carrying around my bright pink pleather pocket-sized NIV Bible…it is the same Truth all the same. And this Truth isn’t just a few hundred years old, it is thousands of years old. This truth doesn’t set you free from measely ol’ Britian…it sets you free for eternity from the enemy of your soul. And it is just as true today as I read it from several different version of the Bible I read on the internet as it was when it was etched in stone or hand copied onto vellum. Now, that is truly powerful.
So, as we continue this week of praising, let us focus on songs that carry in them some of the foundation truths we so desperately need to stand upon. And take a minute to truly stop and enjoy your own “moment”…because these very words have been sung for thousands of years and will continue to be sung from the mouths of men and angels forever. It just doesn’t get more powerful than that!
Revelation song by Philips, Craig and Dean
Isaiah 6 In a loud voice they sang: "Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!"
Rev 5:12 Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under his wings. Day and night they never stop saying: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come." Rev. 4:8
Hallelujah by Heather Williams
I found this lovely information when researching. Enjoy!
Alleluia . . . Alleluia . . . Alleluia: This wonderful word, borrowed from Hebrew, occurs four times in Revelation 19, but nowhere else in the New Testament. It belongs here - because God’s people rejoice without restraint at His victory over Babylon.
Alleluia is Hebrew for “Praise the Lord,” saying it in the imperative sense. It is an encouragement and an exhortation to Praise the Lord!
Some seem afraid of saying Alleluia, but we’ll all be saying it in heaven. It’s such a wonderful word that we should never use it without thinking.
Hosanna – Hillsong United
Whew, this one gets me every single time! People actually said this to Jesus’ face days before the crucified him. Wow.
The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, "Hosanna to the Son of David!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Hosanna in the highest!" Matthew 21:9
And a song I have grown to love because if reminds me of a verse I memorized so long ago. It is frequently quoted and so, obviously repeated often. And for good reason.
Strong Enough by Matthew West
Phillipians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”
And lastly, enjoy this quote by the great theologian Charles Spurgeon. Re-read it a few times. It is powerful!
“We ought not to worship God in a half-hearted sort of way; as if it were now our duty to bless God, but we felt it to be a weary business, and we would get it through as quickly as we could, and have done with it; and the sooner the better. No, no; ‘All that is within me, bless his holy name.’ Come, my heart, wake up, and summon all the powers which wait upon thee! Mechanical worship is easy, but worthless. Come rouse yourself, my brother! Rouse thyself, O my own soul!” (Spurgeon)