Friday, October 1, 2010

God's One-Sidedness in the Battle Against Breast Cancer

Some people don't like the war images in the Psalms. These images make God sound like a God of war. And that can be dangerous. When we start to think that our wars are holy wars, it can give us divine sanction to think we are holy and our enemies are evil - and therefore our enemies deserve obviation. Throughout human history, this idea has led to some ugly outcomes. But the images of war in the Psalms don't always have to be about humans fighting other humans. They can offer images of other kinds of wars or battles. One example is the battle against breast cancer.

Breast cancer is something that is worthy of the war images in Scripture. It is an enemy of humanity. It is an evil in our lives. It is something that God works to help us to defeat. And it's something that deserves our battle cries and prayers for victory.

After reading through Psalm 3, a Psalm of war, we wrote a song about God's solidarity with us in the battle against breast cancer. It turns out that some of the battle images in Psalm 3 can be powerful reminders of God's one-sidedness in this war. God wants us to win. God wants the enemy to be defeated. God is clearly on our side. And God wants our victory to be soon.

We want this song to be a prayer for victory in the movement and research to overcome breast cancer. And God's biased, one-sided support of those efforts. Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, this is our prayer for every person who has been impacted by breast cancer and every person who works to defeat it. May our victory come soon!

The lyrics and video are below:

Victory (Psalm 3)

Facing before us our enemy
Frightened, we go to war, fearing defeat
It rises against us so strong
Tries to break us down, make us weak
Says to us, “All hope is gone.”

But God, Your shield surrounds us
And You are the fortress within us
When we cry out in agony, pain, and fear
From the sacred earth
And within each person
You reply, “I am here.”

So we march, march on like soldiers
Victory’s ours to be won
Holy and healing, God strengthens us
Rest we’ll find
And peace of mind, knowing,
We’ll wake with the sun

Rise up within and around us
We call out, “Deliver us, God!”
Help women strike down this enemy
Like those before
We’ll win once more, lead us
To victory

Healing and strength, God,
We ask for your blessing
Lead us like Esther to victory
You are our hope and in
You we take comfort
Grant us the will and
the courage we need

Then we’ll sing, sing out like songbirds
Knowing in You we have hope
Only from God does our strength come
We sing Your praise
Our voices raise, knowing
This battle’s won

So we’ll march, march on like soldiers
Victory’s ours to be won
Holy and healing, God strengthens us
Rest we’ll find
And peace of mind, knowing
We’ll wake with the sun

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