A Song for When You Are Wrong

/
2 Comments
(Stock photo: Free images)

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Brandi Carlile has a song for every one of my moods/experiences/thoughts/emotions. We can add her song "That Wasn't Me" to the list today.

I woke up thinking about one of the shows Brandi did at the Frederick Meijer Gardens amphitheater — it was either 2012 or 2013 — where she sat down at the piano and began to tell a story about this song before her performance.

She said she visited a women's prison after this song was released as a single, and the inmates were clamoring to hear her perform it. They said it resonates with them because it feels like an open letter to their families and to the families of the people they wronged. 

It's a plea to be remembered as a whole person, not defined in a lasting way by the choice or series of choices that landed them behind bars.

We all want to be characterized more by our good and beautiful acts, don't we? 



"That Wasn't Me," by Brandi Carlile


Hang on, just hang on for a minute
I've got something to say
I'm not asking you to move on or forget it
But these are better days
To be wrong all along and admit it, is not amazing grace
But to be loved like a song you remember
Even when you've changed

Tell me, did I go on a tangent?
Did I lie through my teeth?
Did I cause you to stumble on your feet?
Did I bring shame on my family?
Did it show when I was weak?
Whatever you've seen, that wasn't me
That wasn't me, oh that wasn't me

When you're lost you will toss every lucky coin you'll ever trust
And you'll hide from your God like he ever turns his back on us
And you will fall all the way to the bottom and land on your own knife
And you'll learn who you are even if it doesn't take your life

Tell me, did I go on a tangent?
Did I lie through my teeth?
Did I cause you to stumble on your feet?
Did I bring shame on my family?
Did it show when I was weak?
Whatever you've seen, that wasn't me
That wasn't me, oh that wasn't me

But I want you to know that you'll never be alone
I wanna believe, do I make myself a blessing to everyone I meet
When you fall I will get you on your feet
Do I spend time with my family?
Did it show when I was weak?
When that's what you've seen, that will be me
That will be me, that will be me
That will be me

I think the thing that's so powerful about this for me is that it's not denial of the wrongdoing itself. The bad deeds are already on the table. What I see here is an insistence that those terrible sins aren't who I want to be. 

I don't want to do the terrible things I do ... hmm ... where have I heard that before?

"It happens so regularly that it’s predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge" (Romans 7:21-23, The Message).

I join those women at the penitentiary in their humanity, their brokenness, their desire for a day when they can again make themselves a blessing. Don't we all?

Read more posts in the Groovy Tuesday series here.


You may also like

2 comments:

Sarah Mascara said...

I think I just discovered a new favorite artist...

Rachel Watson said...

OOH yes! Mission accomplished.