There’s two ways to respond to hardship, to tough it out or let it break you. I wrote this song to encourage the latter. A quote from my mother got the ball rolling. I was talking with her on the phone one day and she relayed to me her latest discovery about suffering, that “rock bottom is solid ground.” I don’t know if she heard it somewhere or thought of it herself, but either way, the quote really smacked me in the face. I had been going through some struggles of my own and when she said “rock bottom is solid ground” I saw a new way out, an avenue I hadn’t thought of before, a very counter-intuitive one.
You see, there in the midst of my suffering I realized I was looking for solid ground in the other direction. My life habit when tough times came had been to grab a drink of something hard, maybe eat some beef jerky, and tough it out; to escape the feeling of neediness as quickly as possible and get back to a normal life of false comfort that I’m really ok. Sure, I was down in the dumps, but I thought with enough effort, grit and motivation I could claw my way back up to some place of temporary security. But here, another way had showed itself, an opposite way in fact; a way of falling down, embracing neediness…AND BREAKING.
This song is about embracing those moments of raw need, where the reality of our human condition is brought to light. This song is about living out of neediness. I know it’s not an easy thing to do. The devil and our pride are adamant that we should be able to handle things, that we should keep our fears, failures, problems, and pains to ourselves, and just battle on through. But those are sand-covered lies; shaky foundations that won’t last for long. The reality is I can’t handle my mess. I can’t fight through much of anything. My problems are too big and too nasty for me to battle alone. In the face of addictions, insecurities, loneliness, and loss, I can’t keep calm and carry on. I can’t keep on powering through and living the lie of crippled self-sufficiency.
That’s where this song comes from. It’s for all the people who are at a breaking point. It’s for everyone who’s knees are shaking because of the weight they’ve been carrying for so long. If that’s you right now, I need you to hear that there’s another way out. You don’t have to tough it out. You don’t have to fix this. You don’t have to fake it. You don’t have to keep carrying the load. You don’t have to pretend you’re ok. I know a friend who is not afraid of your mess. I know a friend who’s body was broken for you, so you don’t have to be afraid of being broken yourself. You can stop struggling. You can stop living in fear and shame. You can fall on your knees, with all of your filth and helplessness, AND BREAK. He won’t laugh at you, he won’t ridicule you, he won’t expect better, he won’t even give a thought to all the things you’ve done to hurt him. He’ll feed you; rich wine and fresh bread. Don’t be afraid to hit rock bottom. That place of total neediness is the only solid ground. Let yourself break and come to the feast.
Love and Cheers,