I seriously doubt that a former atheist slave trader and a suicidal poet who had been institutionalized for insanity would have stood out as anyone’s first choice when it came to writing world changing, soul reaching and universal identified with hymnal lyrics.
Somehow that happened.
Newton, a reformed atheist turned Ordained Minister challenged Cowper, a crazy misunderstood Christianity loving wordsmith to a hymnal duel.
Write a new Hymn to a familiar tune in time for each Thursday’s bible study.
Will Cowper and John Newton hailed from different backgrounds but had the same things most of us have in common. Pain, loss, confusion, sorrow, anger and the desire for redemption to name a few. Through their salvation and their ability to forgive they both felt a desire to make others and themselves better.
I’m guessing anyways. I didn’t hang with them personally but it has been widely reported that this was the case.
Newton and Cowper made change happen by owning who they were and sharing their pain with others. Easier said then done but it eventually led to penning Amazing Grace, a song undeniably powerful in the simplicity of its message and one most can readily identify with.
I am grateful to all of you who send me prayers. I do believe in a higher power or a force larger than myself. I just don’t think that simply putting my trust in any given faith blindly will help me or any of us find the answers.
Step outside of what you think you know and listen to the people around you. No matter what you believe or who you pray to or what you have been told.
Fight. Talk. Understand. Listen. Connect. Heal. Forgive. Make change happen because of your experiences. Don’t stand around and wait for it to happen or place blame when it doesn’t happen the way you thought it would or use religion as a way to not see what is right in front of you.
Use your voice, however it feels right to you.
Write your song.
Tell your story.
Challenge your best buddy to a hymnal writing contest.
You never know what could happen…