"You know, Lauren, people with Down syndrome tend to be very musical."
He didn't know that music played a critical role in my life, and the thought that this child who I felt completely inadequate to mother, might share one of my deepest passions, was a balm to my struggling soul.
As Mason grew and developed, it became obvious that he did love music. He would sit on the floor, mesmerized, while I played on the piano. Without prompting, he would clap and cheer at the end of each piece. He would sing along, not with words but with loud utterances, to any song that he heard. During the Christmas Eve service at church, when he was 20 months old, he joined the soloist performing O Holy Night, at the top of his lungs. Bradley and I couldn't help but chuckle, and I was very thankful we were sitting in the back row.
Bradley purchased a Chris Tomlin CD right around the time Mason was about 18 months old. As soon as the first song started playing through the speakers in the van, Mason began swaying in his carseat and singing along to the music. Tears filled my eyes and we laughed in delight watching our little boy enjoy the music. My tears were joyful, yes, but also prayerful that one day he would understand this God that we were singing about.
He didn't know the words to the song, or the power that they held, and he still doesn't. But to this day it's his favorite song. I popped the CD in the car the other day on the way home from school, and after the first measure, he was swaying and singing, this time louder and a bit more on beat than before.
Awake My Soul is a song based upon Ezekiel 37, where the Lord speaks to Ezekiel to prophesy over a valley of dry bones. The bones were a picture of Israel, who thought their hope was lost and they had been cut off. But God gave them a promise: "I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the LORD" (Ezekiel 37:14).
Like those dry bones Ezekiel saw in the valley, in Christ we have been made alive by the power of the Spirit.
If you're anything like me, though, sometimes my soul feels just as dry as those bones. And I need to be awakened. I need a fresh breath from the Spirit to awaken my soul, not from death--that happened with my salvation--but awakened to God, to what He is doing in my soul. A fresh awakening to the power of His Word, the working of His Spirit in my life, and a renewal of purpose as a child of God.
We would often listen to this song on our way to church on Sunday mornings, as a prayer that God would open our eyes to the teaching of His Word. Some days I sing and pray with this song blaring through my van, while my children argue and whine in the backseat. Because if there's anything that sucks the life out of my soul during this season of life, it's often the neediness of my children. And not just their physical and emotional needs, although those are great and draining. But it's also the reality that my children need Jesus just as much as I do, and I long for them to believe this.
If I want to truly bless the Lord in the joys and the challenges of life, I need to have a soul that is alive, in Him, by Him, to Him, and for Him. I need a soul awakening.
I realize this song might be a little edgy for some of you, but the words are printed on the screen, so you'll be able to follow along. I hope you can listen to it and use it as a prayer for the Lord to awaken your soul, if it needs awakening.
This is Day 9 of a 31 day Series: Made to Pour: Living a life of Blessing.