Call on Him

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The words below were written by Alberta Bible College instructor Val Lieske to be performed at the end of a sermon series on the Book of Jonah at Centre Street Church in Calgary AB. “The idea was to encapsulate the theme of how much God loves our nation, like the Assyrian city of Nineveh. Although we are a broken and sinful people, He is desperate to heal us.”

“When I am creating for church, it is easy for me to get a little judgmental; to point the finger at other people and to keep me separate from ‘them.’ … That’s why I ended the piece the way I did. I am the reason the world is broken. I keep breaking it.”

In addition to her work with Alberta Bible College, Lieske is also director of theatre arts for Centre Street Church, founder and artistic director of Fire Exit theatre in Calgary, and the associate director of the theatre program at Ambrose University.

Our land is broken
There are words that have been spoken
That have cracked us open
To reveal the mess inside
The result of human pride
The result of sin applied
The result of grace denied
We are not living who we are supposed to be
Children of God
Justice seekers and brave leaders
Peacemakers and bread breakers
We like sheep have gone astray
Acting like a runaway
From our Father
And now we bow our heads and pray –
Save us from ourselves, we say
And in our undeserving state
Our Father simply sits and waits
For this
To be missed
And then without a second thought
He reminds us that we were bought
He reminds us that He has always fought
That He has always sought
To heal us
That was always the plan
To heal our hearts and heal our land
That we would better understand
His love is big enough to make things right
From the darkness pull light
From blindness pull sight
From sadness, delight
His love is bigger than our sin
It reaches in
And changes us at our core
Leaving us wanting more
Mending what was torn
Restoring what was worn
Pulling out the thorn
In our flesh
He has not left
Call on him
He is near
Not only in the atmosphere
But in your very heartbeat
In the neighbours on your street
In your very backseat
The fields of grain and the city of concrete
He loves our nation
It is His creation
And He’s come for redemption
Call on Him
He is not gone
He has not wandered away
He has not wandered astray
Call on Him
Listen for his voice
It will rise above the noise
It will fill in all the voids
And it will suture all the cracks
Replacing lies with facts
Call on Him
Beat the drum
Until his kingdom comes
Until darkness succumbs
Until we realize we are his sons
And daughters
God keep our land
Glorious and free
Glorious to be
Heaven on earth
The price you paid
For a people who strayed
But continued to pray
Heal us here down in the debris
And no one would disagree
That you should probably start with me