Pop-superstar Carrie Underwood has a new hit single entitled Blown Away. The song is not particularly religious, dealing more with a daughter and her alcoholic father, but we will get to that later.
One of the lines of the refrain of the song caught my attention: ‘there’s not enough rain in Oklahoma, to wash the sins out of this house’.
Now again the song deals with a daughter and her abusive alcoholic father. The plot of the song focuses on a violent storm coming and destroying the house, and killing the father, while the daughter hides in the storm shelter.
I do not know Underwood, nor her life story, and cannot vouch whether or not the song depicts a true event or not; but it does relate the very real pain of a person who lives in an abusive and alcoholic home. By relation, the scar of that pain never leaves; neither does the painful memories that are forever associated with a house or shed or place, where that pain originated.
Which brings us to the line that caught my attention: ‘there’s not enough rain in Oklahoma, to wash the sins out of this house’.
It is true that a rain storm, even a particularly violent one that may destroy a place of pain, and even kill the cause of the pain inside of it; but that does not end the memories of the pain. It may destroy the place and kill the cause, but it does not kill the memories.
But what clicked in my mind was the connection to Baptism. The rain in Oklahoma, however plentiful or spare it may be; may not be able to wash away the painful memories contained in that house, but when just a little water is poured over the forehead, the pain and the suffering and the memory of your sins are washed away.
That is how God works: just a little water makes you clean, brand new, and your sins are taken away.
A flood may not be able to take away the earthly pain and suffering that you experience on a daily basis; but a handful of water applied over the forehead takes away all of your sins before your Father who is in heaven and relieves you of eternal pain and suffering.
That is the power of Christ on the cross. You cannot choose what memories you want to keep and what memories you want to forget, but when God the Father looks at the cross and sees Christ there for your sake, and He looks at your Baptism, where Christ’s death and resurrection become your death and resurrection, then your sins are forgotten forever by God.
I don’t know Underwood, nor her religious background, but that might make a nice follow-up to her song Blown Away.
Until then, consider the words of Paul Gerhardt’s hymn:
You were before your day of birth, Indeed from your conception, Condemned and lost with all the earth, None good, without exception. For like your parents flesh and blood, Turned inward from the highest good, You constantly denied Him.
But all of that was washed away Immersed and drowned forever. The water of your Baptism day Restored again whatever Old Adam and his sin destroyed And all our sinful selves employed According to our nature.
All Christians Who Have Been Baptized vs. 2-3