In 2008, we moved from Boise to Corvallis Oregon. Why did we leave? The job? Were we through with Boise? Did we need to begin a new chapter in our lives? We were uncertain about many things. The economy, tearing ourselves from the place we had raised a family. Our move was very difficult physically and emotionally. There were many things we clung to here in Boise. People, places and things that were familiar to us and gave us comfort. Yet we had to leave.
We moved in June of 2008 to a house on a mountaintop. In June of 2009, we moved again to a more traditional neighborhood. In June 2010, after navigating many unknowns and transitions we returned to Boise. But Boise was new again and we as a family were once again settled.
At some point along the way, my kids had turned me on to Lada Gaga. One of her big hits was a tune called Speechless wherin she pleads with her father to undergo complicated but life-saving surgery. This emotional melody seemed a natural fit to the story of the Exodus.
As I re-wrote the words to Speechless, I imagined myself in Moses' situation. A reluctant leader, not entirely sure where he was going or why he was wandering. Leading a tribe who had some reservations about leaving a place they were rooted.
Moses, first confronts G-d about the commandment he has received, then as he confronts Pharoh, then back to G-d, questioning again. Finally faith carries him through.
Homeless Lyrics by Oliver Thompson, (based on Speechless) by Lady Gaga from “The Fame Monster”
Home, Home, Home
I can't believe what you said to me. Last night I’m all alone. You threw your flames up. The bush won’t burn out, won’t burn out
I can't believe what you said to me. I couldn’t look you in your eyes, I’ve gotta lead us out of bondage, To the promised land
Could you free us from this yoke? Or will my tribe think it’s a joke?
I'll have to leave again, Oh Lord you've left me homeless. You've left us homeless so homeless
I don’t have any strength, Oh G-d you've left me homeless. You've left us homeless, so homeless
I can't believe how you laughed at me, On your throne your word is law. You’re the oppressor, Yet I take pity, such pity
I can't believe you wont let us go, There’s a plague upon your land.He's gonna get you and after he's through,
You’ll be a lonely broken man
It’s really not complicated; We’re leavin’ this place that’s gated.
Raise my staff and cross to the other side, through the sea of reeds
I'll never bow to you, Oh Pharoh we’ll go homeless, We’re headed homeless, we're homeless
I'll never trust again, Oh Lord you've left me homeless
You've left us homeless, so homeless
Home Home Home, Home Home Home
And after all of us had traveled for some time, Would you give us some food? Could you spare us a drop of wine?
And after 40 years of wandering with our pain, Well you made us your own,
yeah you brought us all home, And we’d do it all over again
I'll never doubt again, I'll never fear again
I'm learning as I cry, Won't even ask you why, I'll never be again …
Home, Homeless not homeless yeah, No longer homeless, not homeless
Your presence comforts me. Oh Lord, I’m never homeless., No I’m not homeless, not homeless
Some men may follow me, you’ve shown me my destiny, No longer homeless Oh oh oh
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