January 18, 2005

Walking a Lonely Road

I walk a lonely road, the only one that I have ever known...

This line is the first of the song, "Boulevard of Broken Dreams," by Green Day. I'm not really a big Green Day fan; to be honest, I don't get to listen to the radio as much as I like, and when I do listen, I don't always like what I hear, and I get annoyed with all the commercials, so I either turn it to NPR or turn it off. When I do hear a song I like, I wait for the DJ to say who it's by, but they don't seem to do that much anymore, which only adds to my frustration.

So when I do hear a song I like, I usually have to ask some teenagers I know who it's by. After they tell me, I then ask them, "Do you hear what they're saying in this song?" Usually their answer is no. "I don't pay any attention to the words," they say; "I just like the music." Well, I do pay attention to the words, and while there are many out there that truly are terrible, there are also many out there that are good, and deserve to be listened to a little more closely.

My shadow's the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart's the only thing that's beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there would find me
'Til then I walk alone

These are the lyrics I found somewhere on the internet. When I hear this song, I actually hear "sometimes I wish someone up there would find me." Maybe that's what they're really saying, and my lyrics source got it wrong. I dunno. I don't have the CD, I can't look at the liner notes, and I'm too lazy to search for the official Green Day website right now. But either way, I realize that Green Day is, in this song, expressing the same desire and frustration and hope that people have experienced for many thousands of years. The psalmists wrote about God's absence, about being alone, surrounded by enemies, and even walking through the shadows.

Sometimes, though, the psalmists also received an answer from God, an assurance, that even though it seems that we're alone, we're not.

Even though I walk through the valley of shadows,
I fear no evil, for you are with me.
Psalm 23:4

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