April 6, 2021

One of the great joys of new technology is the ability to rediscover the past.  I recently located the album “Underground” by “Abraham of Clymer Pennsylvania.”  The (fairly obscure) album was released on cassette tape in 1987, and the band was one of my favorites.  In fact, their concert in Corry, PA was one of the very first “rock concerts” I attended as a teenager.  My cassette tape (and player) was lost many years ago, but the iTunes version brought back so many memories.

Here are select lyrics from a favorite song on the album entitled “Never Give Up”:

I’ve been broken, I’ve been hurt
I’ve been wounded, my friends have been too
But my Jesus loves me and he’s there when I fall down on my knees

Never give up, gonna run and not grow weary
Never give up, don’t you ever turn away
Never give up, we can press on toward what lies ahead
This kid wins in the end (‘cause Jesus gives us a brand new start)

Through my high school and college years, those words would bring strength, comfort, and hope in the midst of many trying times.  I found the melody ringing in my mind as I faced challenging situations or relationships.  The references to scripture (Isaiah 40:31 and Philippians 3:13) led me to deeper exploration of these wonderful passages; each has become a steady source of guidance and encouragement.  In the hardest of times, I held on to the mantra – “never give up!”

It never ceases to amaze me how a few simple lyrics from a song more than 30 years ago continue to inspire my heart and mind.  I’m sure that all of us have favorite groups, melodies, or experiences that we harken back to.  Music helps us to grow deeper in our walk with Christ and to look to the future with a spirit of joy and hope.  Music allows us to connect with God in new ways, even as we remember how it originally touched our soul.  What song rings in your heart today?

– Rev. Phil Greenwald, Executive Pastor of Administration