It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, for the sun stopped shining… Luke 23: 44-45
Randy Stonehill’s Didn’t it Rain is the song that started this whole thing. Every time we listen to this song, Aaron and I (Angelika) say “we should sing this in church on Good Friday.” Like so many of Stonehill’s songs, this one is story-telling poetry.
Well the Lord looked down from eternity
And he saw that the world was bound in sin and misery
And he said to his Son
We’ve got to set them free
Oh, didn’t it rain when my Jesus
Died for me…
Stonehill has such a brilliant way of expressing big concepts with an economy of language and then weaving it with music that expresses the emotion of the story he’s telling. This one begins sparse, with almost a monk-like “Didn’t it rain” chant that runs underneath the whole song from beginning to end. It builds and builds as the story is told until it comes to this rockin’ climax:
Well the sky grew dark and the wind it howled
And the angels wept and wailed
And the devil laughed with a serpent’s hiss
As the hammer hit the nails
It was holy blood that paid for all our shame
Oh, didn’t it rain?
Yeah, didn’t it rain?
Whenever I read Luke’s account of the crucifixion, I’m struck by the horror of what happened to Jesus. But today, as I sit with this text and this song, I begin to get a sense of the internal storm that must have been raging within the Christ as he hung there, God trapped in human form… what it must have cost him just to be God enclosed in such little space and then made to suffer such a physically brutal death. And all around him, his creation bearing witness to the storm of suffering within him.
The song doesn’t end there, but we won’t blow the end for you; you’ll have to come and hear it for yourself. Until then, tell us, what resonates with you when you read the account of the crucifixion?