photo credit here
though the cassette tape borders on extinction, the mp3 playlist still doesn’t quite capture the nostalgia-borne beauty of
the “mix tape.”
i see myself, pimpled and pre-teen, hovering over my boom box in stonewashed denim, index fingers poised over both record and pause, trying to steal a pop favorite from Casey’s Top 40.
the mix tape marked a generation; we used it to catalogue our budding identities. we used it to woo our sweethearts.
and though it perhaps borders sacrilege, comparing the Almighty with an early-90s slow jams mix, i can’t help but read the Psalms as the very best example of mix tapes.
these songs, most of them written by David, are less about high-minded theology and more about describing what it means to wear skin in a world run amok. the beauty of each song is found in its raw honesty: truth spilled out in poetry, naked and unashamed. writers who believed God big enough to sustain the fiery darts of their anger, the incessant, guttural moan of their anguish, the heartsick pining for a promise yet unfulfilled.
this summer, we’ve celebrated the first birthday of a little boy who, as his name signifies, has breathed joy into the Beasley family. we’ve also walked alongside families who have just felt the sucker punch of loss, helping them put one foot in front of the other in the fog of grief. the psalms speak in both situations: they whisper God’s name in our quiet desperation and shout his glory when we are able to rise from it.
take a summer stroll through the Psalms with us? let’s blare God’s mix tape from the boom box and encourage each other’s hearts with what we hear.
we’ll start here, with Psalm 145.
feel free to share any responses to this psalm in the comments section.