Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thou Doest.

(pre-script: This song is best read while any song on my playlist plays, as I'm pretty sure that none of them contain words like "Thee" or "Thou..." So I'm not going to wait for just read on, dear ones. Just read.)
Y'all, whenever I am in church, (any church; I've been in many) I have a hard time maintaining my composure when I am expected to sing along to songs that contain words like "thee," or "thou." Sometimes it's a phrase, like "Thou doest..." or something. Y'all, I know that these words are contained in hymns that were written many years ago, centuries ago, even; hymns that are very deeply packed with truth and meaning, and they were written in a time when words like "thee" and "thou" were commonplace, at least in writing. But when I'm expected to sing them, I start to lose it, inside; I just start to bust up.
"So Michelle," imaginary reader is asking, "Why do these words cause you to, as you say, 'bust up?'"
Gentle reader, it is simply because I do not use words like "thee" and "thou" in my everyday speech patterns. Correction, I actually might use words like "thee" and "thou," but only in jest, when I'm clowning myself. For instance, I might open up the refrigerator and say "Get thee to the grocery store!" If I see it's contents dwindling, or I might look in the mirror and say to my reflection: "Get thee to a stylist!" If I see myself dwindling. But I do not tend to speak to those around me in this way.
Like I have time to memorize Shakespeare and perform at a free summer theater program of "A Mid-Summer night's Dream." Like I have time to start dressing Derek and the boys up in large puffy sleeved shirts and tights and chauvinistic thought patterns. Like the girls and I have time to make our own velvet dresses by hand and grow our hair down to the floor, so that we can braid it up in tight cords around our heads, and top it off with an itchy wreath, or something. Like I have the time OR The space for a cow to milk, and then to churn my own butter.
Like I have time to die of the bubonic plague.
Now I know what you're thinking: "Michelle, it's like everything else: You'll have time for all of that when the kids get a little bit older."
Okay, gentle reader, okay; I concede. But in the meantime, I will stick to using words like "you" in my daily life, and when the "Thee" and "Thou" songs are sung, I'll just...pass.


vic-a-la said...

you kill me...i do giggle inside too... sometimes it leaks out. :-)

sara said...

I actually snorted. and i am drinking coffee, so it wasn't pretty....

matt said...

Shall I compare the poetic merit, not to mention the truth and devotion, of
"Come Thou Fount of every blessing, tune my heart to sing Thy Grace/
Streams of mercy never ceasing call for songs of loudest praise/
Teach me some melodious sonnet sung by flaming tongues above/
Praise the Mount I'm fixed upon it, Mount of Thy redeeming love" with
"Our God reigns
Our God reigns
Our God reiayayeigns
Our God reigns?"
No comparison.
Yes, some of the wording in hymns is archaic, but the reverence helps to remind us that we're not just singing to our buddy or our lover- we're singing to the Almighty.
Lest you think that I'm saying hymns are the only way to go, I should remind you that, as a worship leader, I've used songs by U2, Lenny Kravitz, Sinead O'Connor and Tom Petty, to name a few, as worship songs. I think that they all go together in a means of worshipping in spirit and in truth. New songs are great, and we're even called to sing a new song in scripture, but I wouldn't throw out the Biblical Truth, the prostrate devotion and the truly artistic language of "How Great Thou Art."
Thank you
I am back off of my soap box.