“She is runningA hundred miles an hourIn the wrong direction…Under the shadow of our steeple,with all the lost and lonely people,searching for all the hopethat’s tucked away in you and me…” Casting Crowns
I know this song…intimately.
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Casting Crowns’ “Does Anybody listen Her?” might have to be the track narrative to a chapter in mine life. A chapter filled with hope..and with despair.
When ns “go there,” the is the early 1980s and I to be walking down a street led with platinum and also prosperity. The setting is one of simply a few American towns where there were an ext Bentleys parked on the streets, than Toyotas, and also the median price the a restaurant enjoy the meal was $200…in the 80s. Ns was leaving a couture boutique where I’d unable to do to exchange a one-of-a-kind gift from the designer himself, for something “more to mine liking,” and as ns passed the bowl glass window of a another nearby boutique, and also caught a glimpse the my perfect manicured me glancing ago at me, i felt as flat and brittle together the glass itself. Ns knew the self can be not correct as conveniently as the breakable shell that a robin’s egg…and it terrified me so much that i looked away quickly.
On the surface, I seemed to have actually it all…the job, the boyfriend, the clothes, the car, the right neighborhood, the friends…and, the ever-present pains for something deeper. Ns have concerned learn the this yawning ache is the one thing that no lot of money, drugs, alcohol (even the best vintages…), designer clothing, plastic surgery, or “stuff” have the right to fill. The is the ache the we try to deaden through social anethesias, but never dies…it has actually life everlasting. This is the hope that persists. This is the insistent child, the pushing desire, the urgent “gaunt want” that, because that me, is “the hunger and thirst because that righteousness,” the is always, and only, to fill by the Christ.
Skip to one more day…same year, very same city, cars, clothes, shop windows, neighborhoods…but this time ns am wade past an additional plate glass window. In this window, what records my eye, space a set of books. Each one opened to pages tinted by years of pale blue chalk, marking out citations that scripture and related passages from Science and also Health with crucial to the Scriptures by mar Baker Eddy. I pause for simply long sufficient to read each that the emphasize sections before walking on.
In the moment, I’m was standing in front of a Christian Science reading Room. I have the right to see the woman sitting in ~ the workdesk in the room beyond. She looks an extremely nice. I view her look up from she reading, smile, and return to she books.
I wonder if they have actually a cassette deck and also a tape recording of favorite people hymns i loved as a teen. I think about going in and also asking, but I don’t know exactly how to cross the threshold of a doorway that seems a mile thick v guilt and regret. Will she note the odor of alcohol I’d had with my strength lunch? will certainly she have actually some link to the church-based school my mommy works at? will she asking me if ns realize that i “look simply like” who she knows at the college (my mom and also I look fairly alike)? will I carry embarrassment to mine mom because of that glass, or two, of wine I’d had actually with mine lobster salad.
The woman doesn’t look increase from her books again. The glass door v the beautifully etched words, “all are welcome” appears as heavy and impenetrable as the door of a financial institution vault, and I’m pretty certain that mine account is no much longer open.
So ns walk on.
It will certainly take another few years, a various city, the love of a grandmother, the devotion that a mother, the quality of a male I’d never ever met before, and a church community that stepped exterior of itself, and also boldly inquiry me (after just one visit to their Sunday service) if I wanted to help out in their reading Room…to put me top top the other side of the door. The church member who approached me must have actually heard something ns didn’t think I’d even said. And also her solution was to provide me the opportunity to give of myself. Somehow she knew it was what I necessary most…to realize, that even in mine brokenness, I had actually something to share…a desire to serve.
That next day, Monday, i arrived beforehand for my “guest” change (to tree flowers), shyly said “hello,” climate walked straight past my brand-new friend (who to be sitting at the attendant’s desk), make a bee-line because that the source room, wherein I found the ice cream player, the cassette record of the hymns I’d been lacking for ten years, popped in the cassette, pressed play, heard the music, and also wept. Ns was home. And even despite my family members had you are bothering yourself me previously that weekend, singing some of those loved songs with me, it hadn’t to be the same as hear the actual recording, and also feeling choose a deserved to be there,,,in a reading Room…ready, willing, and also eager come serve.
Another city, another plate glass window.
I to be the mrs behind the workdesk in the reading Room. The door is broad open. I watch a young girl standing exterior looking in the window…I smile, obtain up from the Scriptural research I am immersed in, walk the end the door, and join her in former of the window. It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood. There room balloons tied come the parking meter in former of our building. A couple of chairs have actually been pulled the end onto the sidewalk. The music is wafting indigenous inside, and also out to where we sit and talk about…well, just anything she desires to speak about. No agenda. We room two women who have stopped long sufficient to uncover God in a minute of fellowship. It is enough.
I hope she feeling heard. I did. We were there because that eachother…no hierarchy of spirituality vision or inspiration. Her inquiries were mine questions, and also God had all the answers for both the us.
KateKate Robertson, CS
Here is the story behind Mark’s creating of “Does anybody listen Her?” and also includes a live power of the song. The story is a compelling. The song is precious hearing again.
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And if friend would like to check out an previously telling of a various facet the this experience, here is the connect to “In Mercy, In Goodness” native October that 2008.