#Song4Lent · Bible Study · Churches Together in Britain · Felixstowe · Lent · Media Article · Movie · Musical Theatre · poem · Prayer · Sermon

A Song for Lent – 40 Days in the West End – Day 4 – Only He has the power to move me

To Read: Click on song title to watch a video 

Only He

from Starlight Express

Look at me a woman, calm and in control

No silly girl whose head’s always turning

Nobody would guess that deep inside my soul

A brand new flame is burning

Only he has the power to move me

And together we’d make the whole world move in sympathy

But I couldn’t see before

That only he has the power to move me

Take me, hold me, mould me, change me and improve me

It’s not funny anymore

Only he can make my burden light

Only he can make a wrong seem right

Only he can make the shadows bright

And make the darkness gleaming white

He, Him and me

Only he has the power to move me

All the nights I’ve wasted dreaming of the time

When I’d discover the one to guide me

Searching the horizon, didn’t realize

That all the time he was beside me

Only he has the power to move me

And together we’d make the whole world move in sympathy

Hope and pray that I’m in time

Only he can stand and wait that long

Stand by me while I was going wrong

What if he couldn’t wait?

Have I left it too late?

Only he has the power to move me

And together we’d make the whole world move in sympathy

Him and me we’d be sublime

And he still would never guess

That next time I’m gonna answer yes

Does he know if he comes back today,

This time I’m gonna make him stay?

He, Only he

Only he has the power every day, every hour

He moves me

 

From the Scriptures:

Get you up to a high mountain, O Zion, herald of good tidings;
lift up your voice with strength, O Jerusalem, herald of good tidings,
lift it up, do not fear; say to the cities of Judah, ‘Here is your God!’
10 See, the Lord God comes with might, and his arm rules for him;
his reward is with him, and his recompense before him.
11 He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.

Isaiah 40.9-11

To Reflect:

It was in the summer of 2000 that I visited London with a choir from St Martin’s School in Johannesburg where I was chaplain.  During a casual conversation with the then vicar of St Martin in the Fields I began to wonder if returning to work in the Church of England may lie in our family’s future.

My fanciful thoughts turned to the West End and I remember promising myself that if I did come ‘home’ I would make a point of going to see Starlight Express.  In the end our family moved very soon afterwards and in the last week of the same year we found ourselves in East Suffolk.  It was then that I discovered that Starlight Express had ended its run and if I want to see a full-set live performance I now need to go and visit Bochum in Germany!

Pearl, like me, is the one who wants to start the journey of life but is always waiting for the right locomotive to get her moving.  Like me she dithers and swap sides and makes mistakes and in the end is frightened that she has left things too late.

She need not have worried:

Starlight Express

Only he can stand
and wait that long
Stand by me while
I was going wrong
What if he couldn’t wait?
Have I left it too late?
 

Like Jesus, Rusty under the inspiration of the Starlight Express (whom everyone else has given up believing in) keeps on racing and keeps on waiting and keeps on watching for Pearl to come home to him. Only He has been alongside her all the time.

How many times have I chosen my own fickleness above His faithfulness? How many times have I surrendered to the lusts of my selfishness and spurned His life saving love?  How many times have I ‘spread my bets’ on different options whilst knowing deep in my heart that it is, and always has been, ‘Only He’?

The words of the song write the rest of this reflection:

Only he can make my burden light
Only he can make a wrong seem right
Only he can make the shadows bright
And make the darkness gleaming white
He, Him and me
Only he has the power to move me
 

It does not matter how far away we have wandered, He is next to us
It does not matter how much we have done wrong, He has forgiven us
It does not matter how dark our life has been, He is the Starlight.

 

To Pray:

One unforgettable day, dear God,
You reached down to where I was
And lifted me up to where you are
And we have been inseparable
From that moment to this.

Ruth Harms Calkin, New Zealand

 

To Do: 

When we first yielded our life to The One Who Loves us Best we may have found comfort in the words of a prayer or a passage of scripture.

Find a quiet space where you can make that ‘Only He’ commitment once more.

If you need some words this verse from an old hymn may help:

Just as I am, without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bid’st me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come! I come!

 

Encore: Click on song title to watch a video

When he sings Starlight Express Rusty finds the faith to call on someone beyond himself.  A prayer on stage if ever there was one.

 

Acknowledgements:

Prayers are from ‘Prayers Encircling the World’ and are copyright © SPCK: 1998.

Scripture quotations are copyright © New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

These Reflections, ‘A Song for Lent – 40 Days in the West End’ are copyright © Andrew Dotchin 2018

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