My Call Process Soundtrack

As we prepare to fly out to Wyoming tomorrow morning for my candidating weekend, I am once again listening to a shuffle of my very-short, but often-listened-to “Call” playlist on my iPod.  I started this playlist with two songs several months ago – Jesus, by the Velvet Underground (no preview available on Amazon’s MP3 store) and Hold it Up to the Light, by David Wilcox.  The lyrics of each of these songs have been regular sources of encouragement, hope, guidance, and strength in God’s hand in leading this process.

Jesus – Velvet Underground

Jesus, help me find my proper place
Jesus, help me find my proper place
Help me in my weakness
‘Cos I’m falling out of grace

Short, simple – to the point.  What I heard in these words through these last several months are words about how I am not in control of this process and each time I tried to “take control” I was reminded of who really was leading it all.  I found myself many times singing those words “Jesus, help me find my proper place.”

The other song has a longer history for me – My wife Amy played “Hold it up to the Light” for me when I was trying to discern my call as I was getting ready to graduate from PTS in 1999.  Its a bit more of an involved song that the above one, but really speaks to me of the many stages that go through a discernment process – and ultimately needing to rely upon the utter and amazing grace of God that this path is the right one.

Hold it up to the Light – David Wilcox

It’s the choice of a lifetime – I’m almost sure
I will not live my life in between anymore
If I can’t be certain of all that’s in store
This far it feels so right
I will hold it up – hold it up to the light,
Hold it up to the light, hold it up to the light

The search for my future has brought me here
This is more than I’d hoped for, but sometimes I fear
That the choice I was made for will someday appear
And I’ll be too late for that flight
So hold it up – hold it up to the light,
Hold it up to the light, hold it up to the light

It’s too late – to be stopped at the crossroads
Each life here – a possible way
But wait – and they all will be lost roads
Each road’s getting shorter the longer I stay

Now as soon as I’m moving – my choice is good
This way comes through right where I prayed that it would
If I keep my eyes open and look where I should
Somehow all of the signs are in sight
If I hold it up to the light

I said God, will you bless this decision?
I’m scared, Is my life at stake?
But I see if you gave me a vision
Would I never have reason to use my faith?

I was dead with deciding – afraid to choose
I was mourning the loss of the choices I’d lose
But there’s no choice at all if I don’t make my move
And trust that the timing is right
Yes and hold it up hold it up to the light
Hold it up to the light, hold it up to the light

I have since added two more songs to the playlist – both were sung by brothers at FPC on a recorded CD that was played during their father’s memorial service in mid-September (which they so graciously allowed me to rip to MP3s).  The two songs are the traditional hymns “Here I am Lord” and “How Can I Keep From Singing”.  These two pieces very much conclude this phase of the call process for me as the first two seem to focus on the foggy times of the discernment process – where is God leading, God help me know, God I know I need to trust, God-show me the way.  These last two move more into the realm of just turning it over to God and saying, “Here I am, send me” and then concluding with praise of God’s wondrous leading through it all.  I am very thankful for this process and thankful for all that God has shown, Christ has led, and the Spirit has strengthened.

Here I am Lord

I, the Lord of sea and sky,
I have heard my people cry.
All who dwell in dark and sin,
My hand will save.

Here am I, Lord. Is it I, Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night.
I will go, Lord, if you lead me.
I will hold your people in my heart.

I, who made the stars of night,
I will make their darkness bright.
Who will bear my light to them?
Whom shall I send?


I, the Lord of snow and rain,
I have borne my people’s pain.
I have wept for love of them.
They turn away.


I will break their hearts of stone,
Give them hearts for love alone.
I will speak my words to them.
Whom shall I send?


I, the Lord of wind and flame,
I will send the poor and lame.
I will set a feast for them.
My hand will save.


Finest bread I will provide,
‘Til their hearts be satisfied.
I will give my life to them.
Whom shall I send?

How Can I Keep From Singing

My life flows on in endless song;
Above earth’s lamentation
I hear the sweet though far off hymn
That hails a new creation:
Through all the tumult and the strife
I hear the music ringing;
It finds an echo in my soul—
How can I keep from singing?

What though my joys and comforts die?
The Lord my Savior liveth;
What though the darkness gather round!
Songs in the night He giveth:
No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that refuge clinging;
Since Christ is Lord of Heav’n and earth,
How can I keep from singing?

I lift mine eyes; the cloud grows thin;
I see the blue above it;
And day by day this pathway smoothes
Since first I learned to love it:
The peace of Christ makes fresh my heart,
A fountain ever springing:
All things are mine since I am His—
How can I keep from singing?

Categories: Discernment, Music

1 comment

  1. Ed,

    I wanted to let you know how much I have enjoyed your blog. You are one of the only other people (outside of my best friend) who I have seen reference David Wilcox. I am looking forward to seeing you at Fall Festival and hearing your sermon on Sunday.


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