ten thousand reasons

One song has seemingly carried me through this season - its refrain has popped up across states and stages, in tear-filled car rides and quiet mornings at my desk.

Bless the Lord, O my soul - O my soul. Worship His holy name. Sing like never before, O my soul. I'll worship your holy name.

We sang it our last morning at Midtown - 7 months ago now. It played on the radio when I turned onto 24E, beginning the drive to our new home. We sang it at the first new church we tried in this Gateway city - to a new world, to a new us. I cried through it at a welcome service at Covenant, when that long-coming-true dream became a reality. And every once in a while, we sing it in our new church home - a quiet old stone building, with stained glass windows and a silent organ.

Tonight we sang it in the early spring twilight, as the sun wandered through the stained-glass-stars and my heart and eyes burst again at the line -

The sun comes up - it's a new day dawning - it's time to sing your song again - whatever may pass and whatever lies before me - let me be singing when the evening comes.

I choked back another round of change. These pews are finally comfortable, and the faces that fill them have names. And yet I can count on one hand how many more Sundays we have here, before we again pack our bags and head east and southeast, respectively. Newness is on the horizon, a new day dawning. I am out of will to worship. I dawdled getting ready for church again tonight; maybe if I wait long enough, we won't have to leave.

I won't say this season has been the hardest; I know far too many people in deeper trials than mine. Mine is a trial of comfort, of security, of faith. And it's not over yet.

And so I again lean into the chords, these sweet and simple words that have floated me this far, that have promised me again and again that there is always a reason to sing. There are always 10,000.

For all your goodness, I will keep on singing - ten thousand reasons for my heart to find.

So we are pulling up roots again, if we can even call what we've planted here roots. Perhaps we are just weeds, with a fragile grasp and a pretty face, but we'll never bear real fruit in this city. 

And yet I know when I type that, it's not true. We were sent here, and I wouldn't change it for the world. There are ten thousand reasons for us to be here, and ten thousand reasons to leave, and ten thousand reasons to continue to praise in the midst of it all.

Sing like never before, O my soul. I'll worship your holy name.