Saturday, March 27, 2010

    Song for Holy Week: "Fix You" by Coldplay

    As we move into Holy Week and see the cross looming on the horizon of Good Friday, invite your youth to reflect on their own experience of isolation, worry, and fear as well as the hope we find in God's love during life's struggles.

    Coldplay's song "Fix You" could be just the right tune to help your youth reflect on the themes of Lent and the story of Holy Week. From an article at Christianity Today online:

    Then there's the glorious "Fix You," supposedly written for [front man Chris] Martin's wife after the death of her father. The song plays like a modern day "Bridge Over Troubled Water," offering peace and comfort to the weary: "Lights will guide you home and ignite your bones/And I will try to fix you." It's up to listeners to decide who's offering to repair the soul.

    Share this song and its lyrics with your youth and ask them to think about what needs "fixing" in their own lives?  Where is there brokenness in relationships, in behavior, in their sense of self?  Where do they seek change, or help in finding a new path forward? What are the "lights" that guide you home when they feel lost and confused about life? How do they understand God's involvement in bringing healing and new life to our struggles?  What might we learn from Jesus' struggles in the last week of life?  Who in the song do they think is offering to do the "fixing?"  In what ways are we called to be participants in God's healing of the brokenness of this world?

    Another thought:  Choose a quiet, contemplative space and set up a series of prayer stations that invite the youth to reflect on the themes of the song.  For each prayer station, set out a sheet of white poster board with one of the following lyrics from the song:

    When you try your best, but you don't succeed/ When you get what you want, but not what you need/ When you feel so tired, but you can't sleep/ Stuck in reverse/ And the tears come streaming down your face/ When you lose something you can't replace/ When you love someone, but it goes to waste/ Could it be worse?/ When you're too in love to let it go/ But if you never try you'll never know, Just what you're worth/ Tears stream down on your face/ When you lose something you cannot replace/ Lights will guide you home...
    And ignite your bones...And I will try to fix you

    Invite students to spend some time in silent prayer at each station, reflecting on the line from the song (and perhaps an accompanying scripture text from the psalms or the gospels), as they consider how the verses relate to their own journey of life and faith. Youth can then respond by writing or drawing something on the poster board before moving on to the next station. You may even want to include a cd player or Ipod at each station so participants can listen to the song again.

    Close your time with this song by sharing with youth Romans 8: 38-39 (For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.) and an assurance that, even in the darkness, God's love is with us.

    By the way -- for my money, the best version of this song is one that is performed in the Oscar-nominated documentary "Young @ Heart." It is particularly meaningful to hear this tune sung by an elderly man who has been through more of life's struggles than many of us have yet to endure.

    Other thoughts for using this song with youth?



    Anonymous said...

    If you haven't already, see "Young at Heart," the documentary about the senior citizen pop choir. They use this song. It's devastating. I think using this manifestation of "fix you" could be really effective, but for totally different reasons.
    Here's a clip of it: