Accidentally Lutheran lyrics: When a popular artist or songwriter, probably by pure accident, gives expression to the Christian faith in keeping with Lutheran confession.
All these impermanent things
Present yet elusive; Passive yet abusive
Tearing out the heart in utter silence.
All these impermanent things.
SONG: Impermanent Things
ARTIST: Peter Himmelman
The nine-month-old boy watched as the interesting fluid filled the giant saucer in which he was placed. Even more captivating was the shiny snout that was sticking out from the wall gushing forth with more of this clear, warm fluid. After observing this continuing flow for some time, the inquisitive boy couldn’t contain himself any longer. He had to have it! He reached out and snatched at a handful of the fluid. But when he opened his hand, he had nothing to show for his effort. Again he tried… and again… and again. Each time, to no avail. The substance was so desirable, it was as if the boy’s heart had leapt out of his chest for it… only to be left out in the open, vulnerable.
It’s a silly anecdote when it’s a boy desperately trying to grasp a handful of water. But the illustration loses its humor when it casts us in the starring role – our hearts leaping out of their chest cavities, covetously looking up to that next income bracket as “the crown” to be had, loving the youthful beauty that seems forever available at the scroll of a mouse, entrusting ourselves and our children to currency that pays the bills and pleasures the senses. All these impermanent things…
God declares: You shall have no other gods (created things) before me.
Luther expounds: We are to fear, love and trust in God above all ‘things.’
Our flesh fails: Fearing (looking up to), loving, and trusting in ‘things’ above all.
God’s law deals a death blow to our hearts. It shows us to be idolaters – profound lovers of impermanent things. God’s law also gives our hearts good direction. It points our love toward that which is good, the permanence of God Himself. But there, God’s law has done all it’s given to do. It cannot join our thing-loving hearts to the holy God. But what God’s word of law cannot do, His other Word does do. This Word is Itself God – God from the very beginning, in fact. This Word, then, is the perfectly permanent thing. And this Word joined Itself to the impermanent things of this world. This Word became flesh. Jesus was born to deliver to you and me the permanence we hopelessly seek in all these impermanent things. And deliver He has! Your permanent treasure is not found in gold or silver, not in stocks or bonds, not in pleasure or world peace. Your permanent Treasure is Jesus Himself: His holy precious blood, His innocent suffering and death. Here, in Jesus, God gives us the permanent kingdom we hopelessly seek in impermanent things. God the Father donated His own heart, Jesus, to rescue us from our own impermanent thing-loving hearts. And His donation has purchased you a place in His permanent kingdom that you might serve Him there flush with His Son’s righteousness, innocence, and blessedness. Jesus is your Permanent Thing. This is most certainly true!
Reverend Kyle Madson
Managing Editor, The Lutheran Sentinel
Divine Mercy Lutheran Church
Hudson Oaks, TX