Song of the South: I Hear Them All

As I was reflecting on how the Lord’s Prayer invites us to see ourselves as people doing justice, living in loving compassion toward others, and walking with humility in relationship with God, others, self, and our world, I couldn’t help but think of a song by the Old Crow Medicine Show about hearing the cries for compassion and justice in the world.

I’m sharing this song in hopes it helps you come to a great awareness of how you can hear these cries, joining them in saying “I hear them all”.  Yet I also like to imagine God, at the center of our lives and world, saying these same words.  In a way, isn’t that what God tells Moses in Exodus 3? — I hear them all.  All the cries of my people hurting.  Was that not part of what Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, and others were saying — “We hear them all — all your cries, you oppressed ones.  And God dreams an answer to those cries”.  One can look at that too as why we are seeing this move against the oppression of women, queer people, and many other groups today — God is moving among us to say “I hear them all.  Their cries as well”.

Whose cries are you longing to hear this in answer to?  How can you and I be partners with God in answering those cries?

May these words below bless you!

Your progressive redneck preacher,



I Hear Them All

I hear the crying of the hungry
In the deserts where they’re wandering
Hear them crying out for Heaven’s own
Benevolence upon them

Hear destructive power prevailin’
I hear fools falsely hailin’
To the crooked wits of tyrants
When they call

I hear them all
I hear them all
I hear them all

I hear the sounds of tearing pages
And the roar of burnin’ paper
All the crimes and acquisitions
Turned to air and ash, and vapor

And the rattle of the shackle
Far beyond emancipator
And the lowliest
Who gather in their stalls

I hear them all
I hear them all
I hear them all

So while you sit and whistle, ‘Dixie’
With your money and your power
I can hear the flowers growin’
In the rubble of the towers

I hear leaders quit their lyin’
I hear babies quit their cryin’
I hear soldiers quit their dyin’
One and all

I hear them all
I hear them all
I hear them all

I hear the tender words from Zion
I hear Noah’s water fall
Hear the gentle Lamb of Judah
Sleeping at the feet of Buddha

And the Prophets from Elijah
To the old Paiute Wovoka
Take their places at the table
When they’re called

I hear them all
I hear them all
I hear them all

I hear them all
I hear them all
I hear them all

I hear them all
I hear them all
I hear them all




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