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An Old Familiar Song

November 26, 2012

I don’t talk about my faith anymore.

I used to. I used to talk about it a lot.

I used to talk about it all the time, to anyone who would listen, whether they wanted to hear about it or not. Sadly, I learned the hard way that the way I talked about my faith was more divisive than it was holistic. I was more argumentative and pushy than welcoming and joyful, and for many years I gave the wrong impression about my love for God and the love I believe he has for all others.

When I realized this, I simply stopped talking about my faith. I abandoned the catch-phrases I’d so lovingly used to talk about praying and worship, and I gave up the go-to answers for questions about God and life and challenges. I let go of the ideas that everything had to have a black and white answer and, instead, focused on understanding my beliefs as they blended with all of life’s shades of grey. I decided to go about living my faith quietly, and speaking of it in small whispers rather than loud taunts.

But there are some days, like today, when the beautiful mysteries of faith and trust and believing just can’t be kept quiet. There are some days when I get to be home, and fold laundry, and attempt to read research papers, and watch my son sleeping, and kiss my husband goodbye – and I realize I’m blessed. I’m just so blessed. And I turn on a record of hymns and listen to their old familiar words and I let God take me by the hand and dance with me. He hugs me close and pulls me in tight and guides me on my toes around my living room. We dance and we sing and we delight in this simple life’s calling to follow and find joy. If I could get all the steps right, He wouldn’t be the one to guide me. If I knew all the words to the songs, He wouldn’t be the voice in my ear. If I didn’t need him to hold onto me the way he does, He wouldn’t be my God.

It’s an old familiar song with an old familiar tune that brings me back to an old familiar faith. It’s simple. It’s pure. It’s lovely.

I delight in the dance today.

Wilder Adkins – “Nothing But the Blood

40 Comments leave one →
  1. November 27, 2012 3:06 am

    Beautiful writing! My site led me here, as you linked to my song. So happy to read this account. How did you hear about my album?

    • November 27, 2012 10:32 am

      Thanks for stopping by to read, Wilder! We love your music over here – and I have to credit my sister-in-law for introducing me to you through NoiseTrade. I hope to keep hearing more from you – thank you for the gorgeous rendition of “Nothing but the Blood.”

  2. November 28, 2012 10:09 am

    Thank you for posting this! We all need to hear more about God. So many people don’t know him.

  3. November 28, 2012 10:13 am

    I loved life continually gives us constant reminders of how blessed we truly are and when we can realize this that blessing becomes magnified

  4. November 28, 2012 10:16 am

    So nicely done. And the “used to talk about my faith” part resonates with me. Now I’d rather let them see it when I show them as much Christ-like love as I am capable of.

  5. November 28, 2012 10:17 am

    Beautifully written! 🙂 You express your faith and how much joy and blessings it brings into your life so well, that I think that is what will draw people curious about faith towards you, (more so than talking about it to them). Congrats on being FP!

  6. November 28, 2012 10:21 am

    Well said. Religious people are notorious for alienating other people, when many times they’re intending to do the total opposite. Relating to people about anything is a tough battle.

  7. November 28, 2012 10:35 am

    I absolutely loved this!! You said so much with just a few words. I have not been able to go to church for three years now because of my commitments at home but still talk to God every day and thank Him , even now , for the many blessings I have. But when I was going to church I used to tell people that I was going to party with Jesus! Be blessed.

  8. November 28, 2012 10:41 am

    Great post! God sees our hearts…and our heart’s song overflows into our lives…which speak volumes to others…we don’t need to hit them over the head with our Bibles!

  9. November 28, 2012 11:23 am

    A very beautiful post.

  10. November 28, 2012 11:26 am

    Great post! It is SO good to see Christian posts being Freshly Pressed, congrats! I agree with you, I talked about my faith in a totally different way at a point in my life. I was tired of people bashing the church and I got a little tough! There was a time when God’s word really punched me in the face. haha. Someone started an argument with me about the LA Lakers, and they are my team so I snapped back and defended them, hurling stats and championship victories and then it hit me. It was like God spoke it into my spirit so clearly, “You defend Me (and your faith) they same way you defend a group of guys shooting a ball into a hoop..” that got me. It made me adjust they way I walked in my spiritual life! Thank goodness God is patient, He really had to work on me. 😉 Again, great post!

  11. November 28, 2012 11:26 am

    I enjoyed your post, and I found this part to be truly beautiful: “If I didn’t need him to hold onto me the way he does, He wouldn’t be my God.” Thank you for reminding me that He is our Abba, our papa. I don’t think of Him that way enough.

    It sounds like you are enjoying some good peace in your life at this time. May you continue to be blessed by our Heavenly Father.

  12. Created ~ permalink
    November 28, 2012 11:28 am

    I really enjoyed this and can totally relate. Speak the truth in love:)

  13. wwwedirectory permalink
    November 28, 2012 11:29 am

    good post

  14. November 28, 2012 11:39 am

    I love the way you have introduced your faith in such a non-confrontational way. You have been real – and nobody can argue with that! I, on the other hand, ‘blow-it’ fairly frequently when I ‘tell’ people about my faith in God, and not just drop it into conversation. Either way, it is so real that we cannot keep quiet.

  15. November 28, 2012 11:39 am

    That is something i needed to read. I’m in school and we are researching about blogs and this one so happen to be the first blog that came up and i love the words. It makes me feel at peace the short time of reading it.

  16. November 28, 2012 11:40 am

    One of my favourite hymns.

  17. November 28, 2012 1:08 pm

    Love it. Contemporary worship is great and needed, but there is a beauty and power that is difficult to find outside of the great hymns of old. It is so important to stop and think on the many blessings we have today. Thank you for the reminder.

  18. November 28, 2012 1:16 pm

    I don’t know what Jesus would have thought of this though – “Nothing but the blood of Jesus”. What do you think?

    • November 28, 2012 11:12 pm

      “What can wash away my sin?…”, “What can make me whole again?…”, “Naught of good that I have done,…”, “Now by this I’ll overcome…” – when taken in context with the rest of the lyrics to this hymn, I can’t imaging Christ having any problem with it!

  19. November 28, 2012 1:55 pm

    When trying to force people to see God it’s so easy to rely on one particle or one line of His truth. It gives the illusion of leaning on Him when we actually aren’t. I know I do this a lot! It is easy for others to see religousity for the facade that it is, but letting Christ breathe through you–just the way you demonstrated through the beauty of your writing–allows people to see glimpses of Him. And how could that not be breathtaking? Lovely words. Thank you for sharing.

  20. November 28, 2012 2:08 pm

    thank you. that was lovely.

  21. November 28, 2012 2:33 pm

    On my own long journey with faith. I just think my path has found me in a different direction.

  22. mdprincing permalink
    November 28, 2012 3:05 pm


  23. November 28, 2012 3:52 pm

    Wow, this is beautifully said. I’m so glad you got freshly pressed so more people can see the simplicity of an intimate relationship with God. Blessings!

  24. November 28, 2012 3:52 pm

    What a beautiful blog. I happened upon your blog when searching through wordpress. Funny thing is…I felt like I was reading myself into your words. Blessings. I will check in again.

  25. November 28, 2012 8:39 pm

    Nicely done. People who do not believe in God as well as those who do, “preach” what they believe in their daily lives. If I believe there is nothing but the here and now, that will be reflected in my choices. We cannot escape anyone’s beliefs no matter how quiet they think they are.

  26. November 28, 2012 10:10 pm

    Nice post, really! Faith is not something everyone has the same opinion about. It’s simply because we’ve gone through different life trials and tests.

  27. kalicet permalink
    November 29, 2012 6:07 am

    I enjoyed your post very much – the truth of it made me smile x

  28. November 29, 2012 6:44 am

    Wise and inspiring words. I think you said more in this post than what anyone says out loud.

  29. November 29, 2012 6:50 am

    The classic hymns are special to me as well. Based on scripture and resonant with meaning, they have the capability to reach us on multiple levels. Many are simple but profound. Indeed, “What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus.” It cannot be said any more profoundly. I, like you, strive to live faith rather than just speak it.

    The verse that changed my mind on the subject is Micah 6:8—“He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God?”

    Be blessed!

  30. November 29, 2012 7:26 am

    There are two things I try very hard not to discuss with people ( unless I am asked directly ) Religion and Politics. Both are very personal and in my humble opinion NOT up for debate or challenge.
    I have my relationship with God without question. My feelings about politics are mine. I live my life on a daily basis with those beliefs. More like the “actions speak louder than words approach.” I resent being told that what I believe is wrong or misguided because it’s different from someone else’s opinion. I do not feel the need to post Jesus and God pictures and quotes everywhere I go to prove I am a good Catholic. Honestly who cares more than I about my relationship with God? Talk is cheap – live it, behave how you believe your God wants you to. But that’s just me.
    I liked your post very much because you took a step back, looked within and live your belief’s purely, honestly and truly. AND you wrote openly and from the heart. Thank you.

  31. November 29, 2012 7:33 am

    Beautiful writing, and congratulations on getting Freshly Pressed. Also, right or wrong, I tend to feel the same way as you about talking about my faith. I talk about it plenty in my devotional blog, but in person, I tend to only talk when asked, and I, too, really try to avoid the “Sunday School” answers. Faith has to be real. You can’t package it in a “do you mind if I ask you a couple of questions” philosophy.

  32. November 29, 2012 10:19 am

    My grandmother said she tried to live her faith to draw people to God, instead of talking about it. Your joy in the Lord will draw more people to Him than anything else. When I was in my 20’s, I never talked about my faith, but my friends knew I sang in the church choir and loved it so much! After a few years, two friends told me my joy has inspired them (separately and at different times) to find a church of their own and to become practicing Christians. I have never felt so happy + proud.

  33. November 29, 2012 11:34 am

    Wow. I love old familiar songs. Sometimes, I learn new lessons from the old familiar songs!

  34. November 29, 2012 12:32 pm

    Sometimes the quiet compassion and love is what really draws people to God. I need to focus on that more in my own walk. To be Jesus hands and feet and show Jesus through my actions and spirit. Thanks for the nudge! 🙂

  35. November 29, 2012 12:53 pm

    This is beautiful. Took my breath away!

  36. November 29, 2012 3:44 pm

    A beautiful song. It just leaves the readers mesmerized. Simply, awesome a great work of imagination and faith in Him. 🙂

  37. November 30, 2012 6:57 am

    Keep singing! Some of those old hymns sure do have amazing lyrics that stick with you, no matter whether the tune is old or new.

  38. February 11, 2013 4:49 am


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