“I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.” Psalm 40:1-3 (NIV)
Most of us are waiting for something. A healing, a restored relationship, a financial breakthrough, a new job, a wandering child to return. We can often feel closed in with no way out and with no view of sunlight in the distance. And sometimes we find ourselves in a pit dug by our own hands. The choices we have made have resulted in wounds that we can blame no one else for but ourselves. And so we wait for a breakthrough, a rescue.
But don’t lose heart in the waiting. There is hope. The good news is that God hears us when we call to Him. His ears are bent towards us. Any voice that could ever tell you that you are stuck or that there is no way out is not the voice of God. His is the voice whispering through the noise and doubt to not give up and to take courage. Even when we turn our back on Him, He turns to us and He hears us.
Like David, the psalm writer experienced, God is eager to pull us up and give us sure footing on a firm foundation. A rock. He lifts us out of the slippery places of shame, insecurity, and doubt and plants us on a rock marked by restoration, forgiveness, and renewal. And in exchange for cries of help, he gives us a new song. It’s a song of praise. What was once lost or damaged, he restores with a new song that declares Hallelujah! My God has given me new life!
When we resist the urge to choose fear, we sing our new song. We sing our new song in the form of kind encouragement, offering the same forgiveness that was given to us, choosing joy. We choose to be present with our families and community. We show up with gifts of grace and mercy. We step out in faith and belief. And this is our new song.
In this season of Easter, this season of making all things new, we celebrate that we are not stuck with our old song! Because He lives, we have new hope and new song. We’re no longer stuck in despair. Our God has delivered us and given us a new song.
Saddleback Worship just released an EP called FIRST. The hope behind this project is that it would give melody and lyrics to a new song for each of us. These are our new songs in this season. They are songs of freedom, celebration, and surrender. No matter where you are or where you’ve been, our prayer is that these songs would breathe hope into your life.
John is the Global Worship Pastor for Saddleback Church. Pursuing Jesus first, he leads and inspires the Saddleback Worship family with purpose. Alongside his wife Stefanie and sons Noah and Hayden, he creates space for all of the artists, technicians, staff, and volunteers to create, express, and lead in an atmosphere of joy. More from John and the Saddleback Worship team at www.saddlebackworship.com.