A great song which illustrates the theme we just talked about involving how we find God in each other is one which one church I served at in Eastern NC used to close each service by joining hands and singing, Hezekiah Walker’s “I Need You To Survive”.
This song’s words not only point toward how our presence in each other’s lives lift us up from difficulties, but also enable us to live out the lives we are called to live.
In a recent sermon on the Sermon on the Mount, Rev. Dr. Jill Edens of United Church of Chapel Hill said, “No one individual has the resources to [keep the Sermon on the Mount]. It is directed at a community … ” She went onto point out how various commands may not be possible as solitary individuals, but by working together creatively in communities we can live out the hard words of Jesus here.
This is a part of Psalm 103’s point in telling us God is found in others, both individuals like Moses who stand out as emblems of the way of faith but most importantly the community of God (in the Psalm, Israel) itself. Ultimately the gift of spiritual community opens up to the resources to live into a kind of holiness, which in Scripture is a life of compassion and social justice out of the fullness of who we are, which is not possible alone.
What are your experiences of such life-giving community? What songs, stories, poems, or images reflect this community to you?
Your progressive redneck preacher,