When I see a recurring theme in my life, I try to take notice.
Earlier this week, I finished reading a novel titled A New Song (Book 5 in the Mitford Series) by Jan Karon. In it, the protagonist – a semi-retired Episcopalian priest named Timothy – takes a temporary position as the pastor of a new church in a city he’s never visited. While he and his wife are there, they experience a new song in the form of new relationships, giving them new opportunities to tell other people about God’s mercies.
The day after I finished the novel, I read Psalm 40 during my devotions. In it, David is writing about the Lord drawing him from the pit of destruction, out of his miry bog, and setting his feet on a rock, making his steps secure. “He put a new song in my mouth,” he writes, “a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.”
New songs are about more than just new opportunities or different circumstances. When the Lord puts a new song in our mouths, it contains different lyrics than the old song we used to sing. And the new song draws others to the Lord, while the old song tends to draw people away.
The old song I used to sing still runs through my head sometimes, and I even catch myself humming along once in a while. I guess that puts me in the same company as everybody else. We all battle with lyrics that are competing for our tongues and ultimately, our hearts. May the new song always win out. May it always be our default, for God’s glory.