I can’t help but cry every time

Dagnabbit anyway. Silly, silly worship leaders. Don’t they know I can’t bear that song? When they sat on their stools and the guitar got silent with that pounding, steady rhythm, water sprung to my eyes. No, no. Not that song. I held myself in, but the grief welled out anyway.

I held my son’s hand, felt my husband’s arm around my shoulders as my chest heaved the grief. The song I wept at before we left for France now embraced me after we returned home.

Your Renown, by Shawn Groves

On this journey home
I will walk Your road
I will not turn ’round
For another
Make my pathway straight
Into heaven’s gates
I will not turn ’round
For another

Lord, it’s Your renown
Your eternal fame
That I live for now
It’s Your name
It’s Your name
For Your name

In my heart I’m sure
I’m completely Yours
I will not bow down
For another
Trade my selfishness
For Your holiness
I will not bow down
For another

When my sun goes down
And the dark surrounds
I will not cry out
For another

***

Halfway through when we sang the chorus the second time, I had to stand. I battled with a brief worry about that. We sit in the front of a very, very large church, so it wouldn’t be like my little act of worship only seen by Him. But that was the point, wasn’t it? It’s HIS RENOWN I’m living for. His smile. His glory. His pleasure. Not the petty worries that others would think me fanatical.

So as the congregation sat, I stood, raising both hands to the heavens. I sung every word as if it were the deepest part of my desire. It’s Your renown, Lord. It’s Your fame. I live for You. I may not be successful in ministry (the grief of France still haunts me). I may not parent perfectly. I may not be the best friend, daughter, wife. But even so, the deepest longing of my heart is to live for Your renown.

When the music quieted, I sat. No longer strapped by grief, I’d been stripped of it, each note peeling away yet another layer of grief’s pain(t) on my soul. I heard God say, “You are well loved.”

And that was enough for today. His renown, coupled with His surprising love.

I will live to follow that Name the rest of my life.

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