Remember when you were sitting in your booster seat in the backseat of your parent's car jamming out to whatever music they decided to play? As kids, we never pay attention to the lyrics of the songs we hear. We don't take apart the words and dive into the meaning of the song. We just hear it and then bob our heads and blindly sing along to some of the words that we know.
Fast forward to many years later in your adult life when you hear one of those songs again for the first time in a while. But, this time you actually, really listen to it. Your initial reaction can either be a good one or a not so good one. It's probably a not so good one when you realize you were singing along to "Cyclone" by Baby Bash and T-Pain cluelessly at nine years old. But for me, it was a good one when I heard the song "You Love Me Anyway" by Sidewalk Prophets for the first time in about seven years.
I remember singing it as a child not really knowing what I was saying. I obviously figured it had a good meaning since it was on the Christian station but still I didn't really know just how good it truly was. So, as I'm listening to it for the first time in a while some of the words come back to me and I'm singing along just like I did when I was a kid. This time around though, I actually listened to what I was singing, and it quite literally brought me to tears.
The title of the song kind of gives away what it's about, but as a kid, I never realized the power those four words carried. Jesus loves us anyway. No matter what we do or where we are or who we are, Jesus loves us unconditionally, forever. That's all I got out of the song, I liked it but thought it was pretty basic.
Kind of just like another version of the hymn "Jesus Loves Me." You see, I was always told that Jesus loves us and I knew it and believed it but never actually thought about His love. I just knew I had it. So this song was just another reminder that He loved me, right?
That's what I thought then, but when I heard it this time a few of the lyrics really hit me and made me think about the deeper meaning behind the song. The most powerful part of the song, in my opinion, starts like this, "I am a thorn in Your crown, but You love me anyway. I am the sweat from Your brow, but You love me anyway."
Then it goes on to say the following two sentences which really blew me away, "I am the nail in Your wrist, but You love me anyway. I am Judas' kiss, but You love me anyway." It was when I heard this song, for the first time in seven years that I actually became awestruck by God's amazing love. I sat in wonder about it, it's completely unfathomable.
We are the thorns in His crown. The thorns that pierced His skin and caused Him probably more pain than any of us could bear. We are the sweat from His brow as He carries His cross to the sight of His crucifixion where he laid His life down for us. We are the nails that pierced through his wrists binding Him to the cross. We are the kiss of the one who betrayed. We are these things because of our sin, but Jesus loves us anyway and He endured the cross because He loves us.
I don't know about you, but I find it hard to love someone who cuts me off in traffic when I'm running late to work but then Jesus is out here loving us so much He gave Himself a ransom for our sin and shame. He loves the ones who stoned Him and whipped Him and mocked His name. He loves us when we question
His plans and when we are unfaithful and we decide we know life better so we just won't trust Him and we'll do it on our own. He loves with a love that is unmatchable and as the song says, "It's like nothing in life that I've ever known."