Have to explain some before I begin this post. Sorry.
First, I once worked outside the home. Surprised? One of the co-workers on that job was retired from the military and would tell us about his experiences abroad, from time to time.
For a while, he was stationed in Israel. It was a fun and easy assignment, no war or other real soldierly things going on, then; a desk job. Winter came, and with it, an extremely rare joy: snow. The old timers declared it had been 60 or more years since the last one.
The results were that the children did not know how to play in snow. So, the U.S. Army came to their rescue and showed them how to write messages with footprints in it, and to make snowmen, forts and snowballs, etc.
I loved that story and the images of soldiers in camo, with a knowing gleam in the eye and grin on the hardened jaw, teaching little kids how to make mittens from socks and play in the winter wonderland. I imagined giggles from young and older, rollicking snowball fights, and who knows, maybe some shared hot cocoa. It always makes me smile.
Hold that thought.
Second, and some folks may already know this, but according to the Bible, Jesus created everything that exists, including the angels. (John 1:3)
Okay. Now all the explanation is out of the way, and we can get on with this post.
I’ve been listening to an old Rich Mullins CD, lately, and the same song that always gets me, got me again.
I wish I could sing like him and impart these songs to millions. Instead, I wander through ballads, trying to hum along, wondering where folks find such skill.
The following links are to a free look at the lyrics with an option to listen.
I don’t like every song the man ever wrote—my problem, I know—but there are universal beauties in his too-short legacy. I absolutely love “Screen Door on a Submarine” (which you really have to SEE performed, to appreciate) for content, style, and execution: Tops!
And the achingly beautiful “Not as Strong as We Think We Are” haunts me for days, every time I hear it.
But my stoic husband hands me his hanky and admits, “It is a sweet song,” when they play “Boy Like Me/Man Like You”. Let me tell you why, and let me tell you why I’m writing about it here and now.
It is a darling song for lovers of children, beginning with:
You was a baby like I was once
You was cryin’ in the early morn’
You was born in a stable Lord
Reid Memorial is where I was born
They wrapped You in swaddling clothes
Me, they dressed in baby blue
It goes on fully expanding its theme, the purpose of the Incarnation, comparing various segments of Jesus’ life and the life of Mullins’ boyhood: Did You wrestle with a dog, let him lick Your nose? Did You play beneath the spray of a water hose?
But then comes the line that slays me, almost like a haiku moment:
Did You ever make angels in the winter snow . . .