Friday, 17 February 2006

Jim Croce on Valentine's Day by Soo-Inn

Written by Soo-Inn
I put it here because he could write and express so much better what i want to write about.
I received a copy of The Very Best of Jim Croce for
Valentine's Day. Croce was an American singer-songwriter who
died in an air crash in 1973 just as his career was taking

As I played the CD I was reminded of two of my basic
convictions: that everybody loves a love song, and that the
best love songs are sad ones. Here is evidence from Mr.

"If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I'd like to do
Is to save every day
Till eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you

If I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I'd save every day like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you."
[Time in a Bottle]


"Photographs and memories
Christmas cards you sent to me
All that I have are these
To remember you

Memories that come at night
Take me to another time
Back to a happier day
When I called you mine."
[Photographs and memories]

Heard at the wrong time and in the wrong light, songs like
these tap into a deep vein of melancholy and unleash a
sadness so strong it is scary.

Maybe I am melancholic by nature. And yes I have had my
share of heartaches. But I am not convinced that these alone
can explain away my affinity for sad songs.
Or why so many of us have this love-hate relationship with
sad love songs.

Sometimes it seems that the whole world is singing the
blues. The blues seem to be the music form that is most
authentically human.
It seems all of us are pining for some love now lost, back
at some happier time.

This is my theory.
We all pine for a love now lost because once we all enjoyed
the perfect love of a perfect partner.
I believe that we all have a sad love song as the sound
track of our lives because our soul remembers a perfect love
that we have lost.

You know where this is leading.
This is a trail that leads back to Eden.
There we read of a God who created us so He could shower His
love on us.
Here is a love we can never fully experience this side of

We will only and finally be satisfied when we return to God
our Maker and Saviour, for the love we crave, for the love
we need.
But those who do not know the way home or can't find it in
themselves to go home, will seek to be saved by all sorts of
other loves.
Croce again:

"Operator, oh could you help me place this call
'cause I can't read the number that you just gave me
There's something in my eyes
You know it happens every time
I think about the love that I thought would save me."

We all have had our flings with loves we thought could save
us. The list is long: people, sex, pleasure, careerism,
alcohol, drugs, altruism…
The writer of Ecclesiastes gives us quite a comprehensive
list and ends up singing the blues too because he finds out
that in the end, it is all meaningless.

But here is another song.

"O the deep deep love of Jesus
vast unmeasured, boundless, free!
Rolling as a mighty ocean
in its fullness over me,
underneath me, all around me
is the current of thy love -
leading onward, leading homeward,
to my glorious rest above."
(S Trevor Francis)

What if, what if the perfect partner with the perfect love
didn't give up? Sounds exactly like what a perfect lover
would do.

For all blues-singing, sad, lonely lovers out there, here is
the word:

"As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in
my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my
love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide
in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy
may be in you, and that your joy may be complete. "This is
my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved
you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's
life for one's friends."
[John 15: 9-13  NRSV]

For those who hear, for those who dare to believe - and I
know it is so hard to believe sometimes - here is the love
we miss, and yearn for, and need.

It is hard to believe that we don't have to sing the blues.
It is hard to believe that we can be singing songs of joy.
Some of us actually pride ourselves in being blues singers.
We rather sing the blues than go home to Love.

Your brother,
Soo-Inn Tan

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