6th November 2018

Have I Told You Lately…?

“He sang to the Lord the words of this song when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies…He said: I love you, Lord, my strength.”
Psalm 18:1 (NIV)
 

Have I told you lately that I love you” is the opening line to a modern song. These beautiful words were written by singer, songwriter, composer and musician, Van Morrison—also affectionately referred to as ‘Van the Man.’ This song is often chosen for weddings, which is understandable given the beauty of the words and the sentiment they evoke. However, the piece was actually written as a prayer.

The songwriter’s beliefs are reported to be ambiguous, though some Christian believers are known to lay claim to the writer and the song. Unfortunately, we’re unable to reprint all of the lyrics here due to copyright, but judging by the multiple positive responses (posts) on YouTube, this is a well-loved composition. One amusing post reads: ‘You’ve got to be dead if you don’t like these lyrics.’

The song has echoes of certain Psalms about it, with its heartfelt, lovely words and seemingly simple construction. To tell someone in a meaningful way that you love them is a powerful statement—a statement of loyalty, affection, care, intent and devotion, amongst other things. If, like me, you were born into a time and culture when such words and sentiments were not used, even by your loved ones, then such statements can seem almost alien and difficult to embrace. In contrast, it is common to hear people remark ‘I love you’ in our culture today – almost as a throwaway line which can devalue the meaning of the words.

King David also recorded his love for God (Psalm 18:1). He was aware of God’s love for him in spite of his many mistakes and failings. It’s good to reflect on the meaning of love, and it is amazing how many poems and songs have been written about it. There again, we all want to be loved. It is a basic human need. Fortunately, there is very good news regarding this.

God our Father loves us so much so that he sent his one and only Son to die for us, not wanting any of mankind to perish but to have eternal life, the ultimate act of love (John 3:16). It is interesting that when we are truly loved it initiates a response from us (be it emotional, pragmatic or otherwise), and with the Holy Spirit living in us, the response is a desire to reciprocate that love. Changes take place and even emotions and words once difficult to embrace, become available. Some things deserve to be said.

Have I told you lately…?

Prayer
Lord God, thank you for the creative gifts you give to people to share in music and song and which help us reflect and praise your glorious name. Thank you for the great love you have for us.
Amen 

Study by Kevin Harris

NB

You can listen to “Have I told you lately…” for free via you tube. The original version is recommended. Enjoy.

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About the Author:
Kevin Harris attends the Watford Congregation of the Worldwide Church of God UK.

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God Watford
St. Peter’s Church
61 Westfield Avenue
Watford, Herts.
WD24 7HF

Meeting Time:
Saturday 11AM

Local Congregational Contact:
George Henderson
Phone: 01923-855570
Email: george.sueann.henderson49@gmail.com