Begging Please

Eric_Clapton_UnpluggedFrom great loss comes great grief, great emptiness, and sometimes, great art.

When the rock/blues artist Eric Clapton lost his son Conor in 1991, his “Unplugged” album was symbolic of the unplugged life of his son, and Eric’s own feelings of being unplugged from life and love. Featured in that album was one of his finest and simplest songs (see this snapshot of the story behind Tears in Heaven).

Who of us can handle the death of a young child in the senselessness of a freak accident? Who can handle asking unanswerable questions of “what ifs” and “if only’s.” But this song has a haunting quality because the person to whom Eric directs his “prayer” is his deceased son.

It is haunting for a number of other reasons: Clapton is not confident that his son would (even) know his father’s name, not sure if he himself would belong in heaven, not sure his son would hold his hand, not sure of the peace “beyond the door.” Therefore as you reflect on this song, and imagine your own loss, consider the confidence you can have that neither depends on your performance or your sense of disqualification. Our confidence is found in coming to the One who empathizes fully with where we are and who are are,

For we do not have a high priest (Jesus) who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Hebrews 4:15, 16

One of the stanzas goes: “Time can bring you down – Time can bend your knees – Time can break your heart – Have you begging please – Begging please.”  I suppose time does that; I am more sure God uses time like that, and I am even more sure that God hears us “begging please.”  It is a simple request that is left without a direct object… it is merely saying “please”,  as if we wait to hear how Jesus fills the blank – as He does – with Himself.

Tears in Heaven

Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would it be the same
If I saw you in heaven?

I must be strong
And carry on
‘Cause I know I don’t belong
Here in heaven

Would you hold my hand
If I saw you in heaven?
Would you help me stand
If I saw you in heaven?

I’ll find my way
Through night and day
‘Cause I know I just can’t stay
Here in heaven

Time can bring you down
Time can bend your knees
Time can break your heart
Have you begging please
Begging please

Beyond the door
There’s peace, I’m sure
And I know there’ll be no more
Tears in heaven

Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would it be the same
If I saw you in heaven?

I must be strong
And carry on
‘Cause I know I don’t belong
Here in heaven

‘Cause I know I don’t belong
Here in heaven

Songwriters: CLAPTON, ERIC PATRICK/JENNINGS, WILL

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About R.H. (Rusty) Foerger

As I enter the third third of life, I am becoming aware of the role of elders today “to enlarge spiritual vision, being devoted to prayer, living in the face of death, as a living curriculum of the Christian life” (Dr. James M. Houston). I am a life long and life wide learner who seeks to: *decipher the enigma of our worth *rescue from the agony of prayerlessness *integrate spiritual friendship.
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3 Responses to Begging Please

  1. stacilys says:

    Wonderful write Rusty. Your opening line makes me think of a dance. Like a soulful dance with God. God dancing us through our tough times and sufferings. The great art being produced from these sufferings (if I’m even making sense. Hahaha) Have you ever heard the song “Poem of Your Life”, by Michael Card. Here’s a Youtube video of it. I love it.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Sjb2AhGoi0
    Have a great weekend.
    🙂

    Like

    • Thanks for this delightful link; it’s been a long time since I’ve heard a Michael Card song – and this video is a beautiful accompaniment for the song. And, it is such an excellent theme since the Greek word in Eph 2:10 for “we are God’s workmanship” is “poema” – from which we get the word “poem.” I will contemplate the song for the rest of the day.

      Liked by 1 person

      • stacilys says:

        Oh yes, Poema. I love that. I have gone a bit deeper into this as well. I am currently reading, “Scribbling in the Sand: Christ and Creativity” by Michael Card. Loving it sooooo much.
        I’m so glad you enjoyed the video and that you will be contemplating it throughout the day.
        Have a great weekend.
        🙂

        Like

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