it all comes down to this

There are certain songs when they come on Spotify or SiriusXM, they prompt the majority of us to totally freeze and sing along; it matters little what we’re doing. We just must. Sing along.

Such as…

“Woah, we’re half way there

Woah, livin’ on a prayer

Take my hand, we’ll make it I swear

Woah, livin’ on a prayer…”

… or… 

“Tell me why

Ain’t nothin’ but a heartache

Tell me why

Ain’t nothin’ but a mistake

Tell me why

I never wanna hear you say

I want it that way…”

… and last but not least…

“Oh no, not I, I will survive

Oh, as long as I know how to love, I know I’ll stay alive

I’ve got all my life to live

And I’ve got all my love to give and I’ll survive

I will survive…”

In recent years there’s another lyrical set which personally makes me freeze. I admit: it’s not quite as popular. Maybe the lyrics are harder. But no doubt the lyrics make me think.

It’s a creative tune penned by Danny Gokey three years ago. It begins by talking about “running in circles” and “jumping the hurdles”…  checking boxes and feeling “kinda worn out” — words that no doubt sometimes apply to each of us.

And then it gets to the chorus — which is probably the part that challenges me most. Gokey writes it like this:

“Gotta keep it real simple, keep it real simple

Bring everything right back to ground zero

‘Cause it all comes down to this

Love God and love people

We’re living in a world that keeps breakin’

But if we wanna find the way to change it

It all comes down to this

Love God and love people…”

My thoughts are two-fold…

Where else do I complicate things? Where do I make things harder than they are?

And secondly — and maybe one of the most important questions each of us would be wise to ask — where are the places and what are the things I allow to get in the way of me loving (1) God and (2) other people? Where are those pockets and places that I choose something lesser?

I’ll be honest. I think of this a lot more than when the lyrical gem comes on the radio. And I think of how we as a society fail to do this. Sometimes knowingly. Sometimes not. I mean, there are so many wonderful people on this planet. So many seemingly wise. But yet there are also so many who encourage loving all people except ______________.

Fill in the blank however you wish. But that’s the challenge Gokey poignantly pens in his song. There is nothing that deserves resting in that blank.


I get it. We get irritated. We get annoyed. We face both real and perceived opposition. 

Still nothing… belongs in that blank.