Another Surprise

As I’ve written before, I’m often surprised where my writing goes when I write. A few nights ago I was writing a chapter were Annay, my heroine, is walking through a crowd of refugees who are all mourning for their lost families and homes.

Annay sits by herself and is remembering her own loss and something needs to pull her back to the current situation. The “point” of the chapter is for her to start understanding corporate grief. I wasn’t sure how I was going to make the transition, but as I got to the point, someone in the crowd started to sing. Slowly others joined in the song until enough people were singing that it pulled Annay back.

And so now in the middle of my story I start to write the words to the hymn they are singing.

… hold fast our hearts, as we call on your grace.

When our world falls apart, and we feel all alone, let us remember your unending love.
When our strength is all gone, and we can’t carry on, let us depend on your unending love.
When our plans have all failed, we have nowhere to go, let us attend to your unending love.
When our hearts are restored, we are lifted on high, let us all sing of your unending love.

And then I wrote some more of the story. When I finished, I felt like something was still undone, and I realize that I had part of a song written down and part of a melody stuck in my head. I tried to use Garage Band to write it down, but with no luck.

So I was sitting there wondering what I should do and I remembered a friend of Nigel’s who has written some music. I got up the courage to call her up and explained my problem. She was very understanding and even seemed excited at the opportunity to help me. For the next 20 minutes I sang into the phone and she played notes on her piano. Since the song is about pain and troubles, but ends with God being our hope and joy, I ended up crying as I sang.

Since then I’ve tried to write the four verses of the song, not for the book, but for my own sense of completion. I’ve finish 2 and ½ verses and I’ve sent them off to my friend. It really is surprising what happens when I write and how so much of what I write seems to be God ministering to me. We do have an amazing God.

Try walking alone through the life that we live
Our defenses fail against attack
Before our fall into deepest despair
Hold fast our hearts, as we call on your grace
When our world falls apart, and we feel all alone, let us remember your unending love.
When our strength is all gone, and we can’t carry on, let us depend on your unending love.
When our plans have all failed, we have nowhere to go, let us attend to your unending love.
When our hearts are restored, we are lifted on high, let us all sing of your unending love.

As we run the race that you’ve put before us,
As the task seems more than we can bear,
Before we stumble and suffer defeat,
Give us your strength and vision and power.

missing verse

We turn back to you after being alone
Finding your embrace …

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