Hopeless Wanderer

One of my big struggles in life is the pull to be a lock, stock, and barrel member of my generation. Which is to say, a full-out cynical, anti-authority, anti-institution, I-think-I’m-specialer-than-everyone-else-in-the-universe card carrying member of Generation Y. Which is a topic I’ve posted on before.

I’ve recently discovered Mumford and Sons (yes, I know I’m way behind there) and their song “Hopeless Wanderer”. It’s a pull I feel all. the. time. I’m constantly marked by “a clouded mind and a heavy heart”. It’s like a plague. Because as “I’ve wrestled long with my youth” I find that the answers seem so far away and everything feels so uncertain. My wife and I were just talking about all the questions we used to have about everything–about God and life and mystery and hope. But we used to believe that every question had a findable answer, so we never stopped coming up with new questions. These days I’m so jaded that I don’t even want to ask a question because I’m pretty sure it will lead to that same dead-end “I don’t know” that becomes the answer to everything.

A “hopeless wanderer” if there ever was one.

I resonate with two particular parts beyond that, two parts that want so badly to dig out of this hopelessness. “How I long to grow old!” Maybe when I finally grow up (when does that happen anyway?) I’ll finally settle again into that conviction that most older folks I know seem to have. But more directly, “I will learn to love the skies I’m under.” Not as if I will ever be truly happy with this broken world, but I’ll love it in it’s disarray because it was made by God. And right now, I don’t. I feel hopeless far more than hopeful. But, oh God, change that in my heart!

(Note: I hesitate to post this video because they filled in four comedians for the band and it’s way funny to watch, in contradiction to the not-so-funniness of the song itself. So maybe listen the first time to just hear the song, then give it a second pass and watch to giggle at the silliness of those guys.)

Not Fair

But the beauty of grace is that it makes life not fair.

In all my insecurities and pridefully mistaken notions of awesomeness–I constantly vacillate between the two extremes–my one lasting hope is that I’m never going to get what I deserve. And I’m trusting in what’s already been done to do something new and good and perfect now in me, despite the mess I’ve made.

And how did I end up in this mess, anyway?

All I was trying to do was save my own skin. But so were You–so were You.

Good thing.

Redeeming Twelve-Tone Music (Kinda)

It’s pretty safe to say that I’ve always pretty much hated twelve-tone music.

If you don’t know what that is, here’s the Cliff’s Notes version: it’s basically a mathematical way to approach music that was invented in the last hundred years to shake up the music world.

And it’s always ugly. ALWAYS. Which was kind of the point. But that doesn’t make it any less awful.

But along comes Vi Hart and she explores not only the philosophical ideas behind it (which made my head hurt a little, though not in a bad way), but she made twelve-tone eerie and beautiful.

Give it a look. I let it play in the background/side screen while I worked on other stuff–I don’t have thirty minutes to just sit and watch something like this, though it’d be cool if I did: