One of the things I really cherish about being part of the Uniting Church in Australia for the last 3 years, is being exposed to a deep well of worship resources that is very distinct from what I’ve experienced back home in Malaysia. Just two weeks ago during service, I was introduced to this song, ‘Inspired by Love and Anger’ by John Bell. I found the lyrics intriguing and amusing, yet challenging at the same time. The final verse caught me entirely by surprise as it flashed up on the projector screen.
It reminds us of all the injustices of the world, which many of us have turned a blind eye towards. The song speaks of those who cry out for justice, of the affluent who want to keep the status quo, of the God who hears and calls, and of the One who answered that call…
Inspired by love and anger, disturbed by need and pain,
Informed of God’s own bias we ask him once again:
“How long must some folk suffer? How long can few folk mind?
How long dare vain self interest turn prayer and pity blind?”
From those forever victims of heartless human greed,
Their cruel plight composes a litany of need:
“Where are the fruits of justice? Where are the signs of peace?
When is the day when prisoners and dreams find their release?”
From those forever shackled to what their wealth can buy,
The fear of lost advantage provokes the bitter cry,
“Don’t query our position! Don’t criticise our wealth!
Don’t mention those exploited by politics and stealth!”
To God, who through the prophets proclaimed a different age,
We offer earth’s indifference, its agony and rage:
“When will the wronged be righted? When will the kingdom come?
When will the world be generous to all instead of some?”
God asks, “Who will go for me? Who will extend my reach?
And who, when few will listen, will prophesy and preach?
And who, when few bid welcome, will offer all they know?
And who, when few dare follow, will walk the road I show?”
Amused in someone’s kitchen, asleep in someone’s boat,
Attuned to what the ancients exposed, proclaimed and wrote,
A Saviour without safety, a tradesman without tools
Has come to tip the balance with fishermen and fools.
Here’s a shorter version of the song sung by Derrick Paul Miller: