This morning I drove through the crisp autumn air to my parents house for a quiet morning. A morning where I could sit in their summer house, walk their labyrinth and know that Nana was doing a very good job entertaining the small boy. A morning where I could stop and be with my Maker, enjoying his world and where I could listen again to his voice. As I drove out into the countryside sun streamed through the trees, golden leaves danced in the wake of lorries thundering past and I smiled at the blue blue sky.
Accompanying me as I drove was the new album, Tires Rushing by in the Rain, by Martyn Joseph (who if you haven’t figured out by now I am slightly obsessed with). On it are 17 covers of Bruce Springsteen songs (again another man I have a slight obsession about). It’s almost too much beauty to take. These men are ones that have soothed my soul in countless ways over the years, traveling with me on my journey through this crazy life, stirring hope, reminding me that I am not alone, expressing thoughts and feelings like no-one else could.
The best accolade I can grant is that they sing with cracks in their voices. They sound like they might break down when they sing with passion and depth. I really can’t stand polished music, music that has no feeling or is too processed. There is nothing processed about this new album, I lost count of the times I heard Martyn’s voice crack a little as he moulded these songs to make them his own.
These are songs of real hope, songs that express the heartache and weariness of life but with a lifted head and a look towards the dark horizon with longing expectation of the dawn. These are songs to wrap you warm as the nights draw in and the coldness bites. These are songs to travel with you through the fears, anxieties and worries of this world, songs that let you know you are not alone. These are songs to leave you aching with hope, with the tangible notion that it really isn’t a sin to be glad you are alive and together we can spit in the face of the badlands. These are songs that leave you with a new desire to keep on walking home. These are songs sung by a man who has travelled long and hard with them. These are songs sung like old friends, there to catch you when you fall.
This morning as I drove, as I listened, as I sat and as I prayed I felt again the the wonder of the seasons change reminding me of that which does not change.
This morning I sensed again that hope was real and at work in this world, because it goes deeper than the darkness.
This morning my soul was soothed and I was glad to know that I am not alone.