Well, this song was a REALLY fun song to write. If you haven't read Hebrews 11, or haven't read it recently, go take a break from this post and go read it. Because I can't quote the whole chapter on here. I mean, I could but I don't know if that is a great way to spend half this post. But, it is so good! And include 12:1-2 in your reading, because I personally think that they put the chapter break in the wrong spot. So, read Hebrews 11:1-12:2.
Did you read it? Great!
I've always thought this passage was such an encouragement and have thought several times how cool it would be to write a song from it. We made our way through Hebrews in a matter of 4 weeks. It was cool to read Hebrews 11-12 in context as Jesus is the fulfillment and culmination of all these heroes of the faith. I had mentioned to a friend on Saturday morning my desire to write a song someday on this chapter. Saturday night we found ourselves reading BSF's notes on Hebrews 11-13. In the middle of this, suddenly the line "Do you know the faith of Abel?" popped into my head, which some sort of melody. I found myself telling my friend Kaitlyn, "I, um..., need a guitar," and leaving the couch and heading to the music room. About 15 minutes later I had found a key and a crazy melody for a verse/pre-chorus. And I had one line. So, who knew what was going to happen with that!
The next day, the first verse/pre-chorus simply dropped into my lap (thanks Holy Spirit!) as well as a melody for the chorus. The first verse paired Enoch and Abel: two men who both found favor with God through their faith, but met very different ends. We can also trust that God finds favor with us as we put our faith in Him, regardless of how in our lives it pans out. The pre-chorus paired Noah and Abraham, who both had to wait a very long time to see what God had promised. After that, it was very interesting as God (not audibly, sadly) said to me, "You do the same thing with the second verse and pre-chorus. You have a brain. You have the Scriptures. Use them." So, that was pretty cool.
The chorus launches in to Romans 12, as all of these examples of faith point us to look to Christ, the fulfillment of every promise, and the greatest example of faithfulness. "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witness, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of God." What a culmination! The words "author" and "perfecter" have been translated several different ways, but one translation I ran across really helped me think about what is happening in this passage. It said, the "initiator" and "completer" of our faith. Without the Lord, how can our faith begin? We are so bent away from Him (Romans..."while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."). And Through Jesus we are made perfect. We are sanctified, justified. As we can come to wholeness and completeness, so can our faith. He does all of that. Woo!!!
Then...the bridge. I was in the spot of Hebrews 11 where is says: "What more can I say? I don't have time to tell of Gideon, Sampson, Barak, Jephthah, David, Samuel, the prophets...etc." and starts listing all the crazy things that people of faith did that they had no business doing. But, the author also ends with those who are imprisoned, mistreated, killed, left destitute for their faith. And that all of these surround us as examples of keeping their eyes on Jesus, as we can. I already had 3 and a half minutes of song and hadn't started a bridge. But, out it came with all the words rushing really fast. And, all the sudden, two weeks to the day, only feet from where I originally said, "Umm...I need a guitar," a song was born. It is among my faves. Hope you like it!
Faith of Generations
Do you know the faith of Abel?
For whom God’s favor had a price
Have you heard the tale of Enoch?
Who walked with God and never died
Surely Noah’s life testifies that faith is not sight
As sure as Abram’s eyes beheld the starry sky
His children long to find the countryside that they are promised
So we leave behind all earthly ties and run
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus Christ
With all who stand beside us
He is the spark that ignites the faith of generations
The cross endured, its shame despised
Our faith completed as we strive
To fix our eyes
Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
All blessed their sons in foreign lands
Then some 400 years later
The foretold exodus began
Surely Moses was no ordinary child of promise
As sure as Rahab’s trust was not in walls of stone
All of us reborn through the waters into the wilderness
For where our Savior calls, we’re given faith to go
What more can I say? I don’t have the time to tell of every strength
Born of weakness; wish we could’ve seen it, as they conquered kingdoms
(and armies and giants and every fear)
But not every story ends with the heros who pass through the flames and the
Lion’s den; we, together with them, will gain resurrection
So, we hold to the same hope
And love with the same love
With all the faith of generations
My name is complicated. My parents named me Theresa. My friends call me "Pinky." My professional title is "Ms. Lindell." Choose one.