Today I was musing about some of my favorite “Spirituals,” – a word I’m using broadly here to mean religious songs in a popular style – and came up with a list of three favorites:
I like the stylistic variety of the list (jazz-flavored Gospel, hard rock, and whatever it is that Leonard Cohen does), but when I stepped back to consider it, what surprised me about it was its thematic unity. If I had to condense that theme to one word, it would be surrender, to God and his holy will.
A keyword among the Church Fathers is repentance, and I spent some time reflecting on how these terms intersect. Are they different words for what at a deeper level turns out to be the same thing? Don’t ask me.
Abandonment to the Divine will isn’t something I can say that I’ve even approached, but I’m grateful to be reminded that it’s an aspect of the narrow way that leads to life.