Lent Blog #7 (Deathbed)

February 23, 2010

I am an emotional person. I have come to terms with that. Not that I get really upset easily or anything but simple things can bring tears to my eyes. Snow, for instance. (It snowed again today!) But, there are only a few songs that can bring tears to my eyes. And very few that I would take the time to write about. I found one such song today though. The song is “Deathbed” by Relient K. It is a bit long but it is well worth the listen. And it has a killer guest vocals by Jon Foreman. I also posted the lyrics below. Give them a read.

When I stumbled upon this song today I was not expecting for it to hit me as hard as it did. It is basically a song from the point of view of a man who is on his deathbed with lung cancer. He tells the story of his life and how jacked up he was throughout it. And then he gets to the end of his life and as he is about to die he remembers the prayer that he prayed so long ago: “Jesus, please forgive me of my crimes. Sanctify this withered heart of mine.
Stay with me until my life is through. And on that day please take me home with you.” And Christ comes and takes him to where he belongs. And while this was song was not a true story, I know it has happened. I know that people have lived sinful lives and finally realized what mattered a little later than most and I know that God saved them. And that is what struck me so hard about this song today. THAT is the God I serve. A God that is relentless in his pursuit of his children even to the deathbed. Such great love. After a while, any human would give up on a person. But not our God. And that is what amazes me. That is what I am meditating on tonight. How I can spend my whole life running and God is still one step behind waiting for me to turn around.

Thanks for never giving up on me, Dad.

Deathbed by Relient K

I can smell the death on the sheets
Covering me
I can’t believe this is the end

But this is my deathbed
I lie here alone
If I close my eyes tonight
I know I’ll be home

The year was nineteen forty one
I was eight years old and
Far far too young
To know that the stories
Of battles and glory
Was a tale a kind mother
Made up for her son
You see
Dad was a traveling preacher
Teaching the words of the Teacher
But mother had sworn
Went off to the war
And died there with honor
Somewhere on a beach there
But he left once to never return
Which taught me that I should unlearn
Whatever I thought a father should be
I abandoned that thought
Like he abandoned me

By forty seven I was fourteen
I’d acquired a taste for liquor and nicotine
I smoked until I threw up
Yet I still lit ’em up for thirty more years
Like a machine

So right there you have it
That one filthy habit
Is what got me where I am today

I can smell the death on the sheets
Covering me
I can’t believe this is the end
I can hear those sad memories
Still haunting me
So many things
I’d do again

But this is my deathbed
I lie here alone
If I close my eyes tonight
I know I’ll be home

I got married on my twenty first
Eight months before my wife would give birth
It’s easier to be sure you love someone
When her father inquires with the barrel of a gun
The union was far from harmonious
No two people could have been more alone than us
The years would go by and she’d love someone else
And I realized I hadn’t been loved yet myself

From there it’s your typical spiel
Yeah if life was a highway
I was drunk at the wheel
I was helping the loose ends
All fall apart
Yeah I swear I was destined to fail
And fail from the start

I bowled about six times a week

The bottle of Beam kept the memories from me
Our marriage had taken a seven-ten split
Along with my pride the ex-wife took the kids

I can smell the death on the sheets
Covering me
I can’t believe this is the end
I can hear those sad memories
Still haunting me
So many things
I’d do again

But this is my deathbed
I lie here alone
If I close my eyes tonight
I know I’ll be home

I was so scared of Jesus
But He sought me out
Like the cancer in my lungs
That’s killing me now
And I’ve given up hope
On the days I have left
But I cling to the hope
Of my life in the next
Then Jesus showed up
Said “Before we go”
“I thought that we might reminisce”
“See one night in your life”
“When you turned out the light”
“You asked for and prayed for my forgiveness”

You cried wolf
The tears they soaked your fur
The blood dripped from your fangs
You said, “What have I done?”
You loved that lamb
With every sinful bone
And there you wept alone
Your heart was so contrite

You said, “Jesus, please forgive me of my crimes
Sanctify this withered heart of mine
Stay with me until my life is through
And on that day please take me home with you”

I can smell the death on the sheets
Covering me
I can’t believe this is the end
I can hear You whisper to me,
“It’s time to leave
You’ll never be lonely again”

But this was my deathbed
I died there alone
When I closed my eyes tonight
You carried me home

I am the Way
Follow Me
And take My hand
And I am the Truth
Embrace Me and you’ll understand
And I am the Light
And for Me you’ll live again
For I am Love
I am Love
I, I am Love

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