BFTJ – August 20 – The Treasure of the Poor

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This summer, I have spent a lot of time listening to Michael & Lisa Gungor’s new album, “One Wild Life.” There are several songs on the album that have been played A LOT, but one of those is called Light. Its not a complicated song but a beautiful one. The lyrics are the following:

Your eyes, they opened
And love was spoken
The tears came tumbling down

Your heart was broken
The words were spoken
The tears came tumbling down

And the blind gained sight
As we met our Light
Oh the joy and fight
The gift of life

Your hands, the creases
Your feet, your breathing
You’re mine, you’re perfect, Light

And the blind gained sight
As we met our Light
Oh the joy and fight
The gift of life

I can’t take my eyes off of you, oh my Light
I can’t take my eyes off of you

This was one of those songs initially that I wasn’t quite sure I knew what they were singing about, but I just loved the lyrics and the sound of the song. I later read that the song was written about one of their children, born in 2014, with Downs Syndrome and with a heart condition. Once I understood some of the backstory the lyrics made perfect sense.

This is the song that went through my heart as I read Nouwen’s words today about “The Treasure of the Poor.” Nouwen (who himself spent a significant portion of his life living among the severely disabled in a group home) writes, “The poor have a treasure to offer precisely because they cannot return our favors. By not paying us for what we have done for them, they call us to inner freedom, selflessness, generosity, and true care.”

Its important to note that “what we get in return” is not the reason that we are called to serve the poor. We are called to serve the poor because Jesus calls us to do so and Jesus modeled that in his life for us. But the reality is that when we serve we are often blessed more than we bless others. Michael and Lisa Gungor’s song speaks to this reality that their new child brings incredible light into their lives in the midst of the challenges that are present. The light and the blessings far outweigh anything else. Here is their video for the song.

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