Bless the Lord, Oh My Soul

Over the past year and few months, I have been moved to tears multiple times by the song “10,000 Reasons (Bless, the Lord)” by Matt Redman and Jonas Myrin.  This song should be familiar as it is one that we sing together at GRC quite often. The chorus goes like this:

“Bless the Lord, O my soul

O my soul

Worship His holy name

Sing like never before

O my soul

I’ll worship Your holy name”

One of the reasons it is so close to my heart is that I was listening to it frequently in the final weeks of my pregnancy with our son, Ray. I had been having such anxiety: worrying about this baby I was carrying and the “freak” blood clot that was causing so many issues. I knew that God was the only one to carry us through, but this was pushing me to the limits of my faith into a new dependence I had not experienced before. To Bless the Lord, when you’re enduring such pain, seems counter-intuitive. Yet, that is the way of the Gospel, giving grace when there seems to be no hope. The first verse points towards that everyday choice to worship:

“The sun comes up, it’s a new day dawning

It’s time to sing Your song again

Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me

Let me be singing when the evening comes”

Fast forward to September 2, 2016 and holding the tiny body of our son, born a few days after his little heart had stopped beating. When we came to church the next Sunday this song was playing, and I remember standing and just sobbing while the rest of the congregation sang. Even in the midst of such sadness and loss, my soul was still crying out to Bless the Lord. The Holy Spirit was encouraging and upholding my heart in that moment to remember that we still serve a great God who is always worthy to be praised, in the good times and the bad.

Some days are still harder than others, grieving is a process and should not be downplayed, but through it all I have seen just how amazing God’s grace and love is for me personally, as well as for all His children. As we heard in the past three Grace Stories, only He can take tragedy and bring peace; see a heart of stone and give it new life; and most amazingly of all, save us from ourselves.

The last verse of the song makes me think of that great day when I will see not only Ray, but everyone gone before, eternally praising our perfect Heavenly Father. I realize I am a musical person, but I also hope that the next time you hear this song you will join in and sing with joyful abandon to the one who is worthy of all our praise.

October 15th is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. As a church family let’s take time to remember these little ones and how precious they are. For those who have experienced such loss, please know many of us at GRC also know this pain and would love to treasure the life of your little one with you.

Because only His Grace is sufficient.

Whitney Cordes and her husband, Cliff, have been members of GRC since 2014.  Books, music, and design are a few of her favorite things.