Tuesday, March 27, 2007

A MASTER OF GRACE & CREATIVITY

MICHAEL KELLY BLANCHARD. I've been privileged to be around a master of grace and creativity over the past few days. I listened to Michael Kelly Blanchard sing finely woven stories old and new in a Sunday evening concert in Indianapolis. Pastors and spouses of the Wabash Conference (Free Methodist Church) then participated in Michael's storytelling workshop at our annual retreat in Nashville, Indiana on Monday and Tuesday. Michael's perspective and insight deepens with age, resounding crisply in his music and lyrics. Not sure I've ever heard anyone express grace amid heartaches and hopes so honestly and compellingly. He is a treasure for grace seekers.

BE YE GLAD. Here are the lyrics of an older Blanchard song. It's much older than 9/11, but I found comfort and courage in it after that tragic, culture-rattling event.

In these days of confused situations.
In these nights of a restless remorse,
When the heart and the soul of the nation,
lay wounded and cold as a corpse.
From the grave of the innocent Adam,
comes a song bringing joy to the sad.
Oh your cry has been heard and the ransom,
has been paid up in full, Be Ye Glad.

Refrain:

Oh, Be Ye Glad, Be Ye Glad,
Every debt that you ever had
Has been paid up in full by the grace of the Lord,
Be Ye Glad, Be Ye Glad, Be Ye Glad.

From the dungeon a rumor is stirring.
You have heard it again and again.
But this time the cell keys are turning,
and outside there are faces of friends.
And though your body lay weary from wasting,
and your eyes show the sorrow they've had.
Oh the love that your heart is now tasting
has opened the gate, Be Ye Glad.

Refrain

So be like lights on the rim of the water,
giving hope in a storm sea of night.
Be a refuge amidst the slaughter,
for these fugitives in their flight.
For you are timeless and part of a puzzle.
You are winsome and young as a lad.
And there is no disease or no struggle,
that can pull you from God, Be Ye Glad.

Refrain

Learn about Michael Kelly Blanchard and access his songs and stories at www.michaelkellyblanchard.com

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