Have you ever heard of an ear worm? It’s when part of a song, usually the chorus, gets stuck on repeat in your head. Over and over the lyrics play…twenty…thirty…forty times. It’s without fail that I fall victim to the dreaded ear worm when I’m sound asleep. I wake up in the middle of the night with songs running through my head with no end in sight! It can be maddening. I’ll try to sing another song to break the cycle. Anything but the seven hundredth time of whatever I was listening to that day. The older I get the more difficult it seems to ward off the ear worm. I have visions of recording artists laughing maniacally in the corner wringing their hands saying “we’ve got her now.”
There’s just one problem. I am famously awful at knowing the words to a song. Until very recently I thought the Go-Go’s hit song “Our Lips are Sealed” was “Are you for Real?” It made complete sense to me and I’ve sang this song forever the wrong way. It drives my husband bananas. I now have a car where the title of the song shows up on my dashboard. Wow…it’s like a whole new world of music for me! It’s completely changed the way I listen to music. I still regularly create my own lyrics and for better or worse, I’m like Frank Sinatra singing it “My Way.”
I listen to mostly Christian radio and last week I was listening to a song I’ve heard for years by Big Daddy Weave called “The lion and the lamb.” There is a lyric in there that I thought went like this:
My God is alive…
Of course, my God is alive! I move on with my day (sing my song). But that night I could feel it coming on…the dreaded ear worm. Closer and closer it called me “my God is alive” Ugh! I couldn’t take it anymore. I just had to look up the lyrics so I could sing the song in its entirety and then hopefully break the cycle of the dreaded ear worm and get back to the business of sleep. I grab my phone (painfully aware that the glow of the phone is NOT something that will lull me back into a dreamless sleep). I start searching for the song “My God is alive” and I’m getting zero, zip, zilch in search results. What DOES pull up is “My God is a Lion” Wait, what??? A lion? That doesn’t make any sense…My God is a lion??? I’m desperate enough at 3 am and click on the lyrics and sure enough, I’ve been singing this song wrong forever and the lyric is actually:
Our God is the Lion, the Lion of Judah
I want nothing more than to crush the earworm from my brain and now I’m realizing that God is a Lion and the Lion of Judah no less and, like Alice, down the rabbit trail I go.
As you may know, Judah is one of the twelve tribes of Jacob and is commonly used to describe Jesus in the Christian faith and used once in the book of Revelation. I look up characteristics of a lion and these words come up “strength” “royalty” “courage”. I start to think about Jesus and know these are characteristics that he also portrays through the Bible. The ear worm ‘My God is alive” slowly start to recede and the words “My God is a Lion, the Lion of Judah” wash over me. My ear worm turns to praise for a Heavenly Father that sent this baby…this savior to us. A Savior who can be both lion and a lamb. I’m filled with peace and humbled by gratitude for this lion who stays by my side and fights for me and has courage when I’m faltering and is strong when I’m weak. I eventually drift into a sleep befitting the daughter of a King.
I woke up and shared this experience with my husband. His comment was that I actually had an “error worm.” How true! I’m so thankful for this “error worm” because it gave me time to learn more about God and reflect on Him and a few of His attributes.
I know I’m going to continue to goof on my lyrics to songs. It was brought to my attention recently that Journey did not write a song called “’Endlessly.” However, I feel that in this circumstance, God was using this as an opportunity to draw me closer to Him. Maybe it wasn’t an error worm after all but an invitation to sit as the feet of Jesus and rest in Him.
“Our God is the Lion, the Lion of Judah
He’s roaring with power and fighting our battles
And every knee will bow before You.”