Before the Parade Passes By - Maribeth Benson


Maribeth Benson

Maribeth Benson

I have been a slug. I have not worked out at our local YMCA for the past 2 months, Ok, it’s been closer to 3 months but who’s counting? Except my conscience! But I had some really good excuses, I am sure you have used them yourself: It snowed, I have a cold, I have another cold, it’s still cold, it snowed again, and January is the magic month.

So this January, the magic month, I returned to swimming. The only thing I can do well in the ‘World of Exercise’ is swim. And I say that because I am able to stay above the water and maintain that buoyancy for at least 40 minutes. Swimming is like falling off a bike, you can stop for a while and pretty much pick up from where you left off… or you drown.  They did ask me, though, to please leave my bike at home next week. I will comply.

However, I cannot swim without my waterproof tunes, I have to have music! Unfortunately, exercise does not win out over music. I am partial to musicals (who would guess?) and, like the prophet Doug Addison, I love the way the Holy Spirit speaks to me even through secular music.

I think a lot of Christians think that they have to be on their face praying to get His attention, although in my case I am on my face when I swim, ha! Don’t get me wrong now, I believe there are definite times that you need to be seeking His face and to be in the Word but, frankly, He wants us to seek His face 24/7 including that one hour after your morning coffee.

He wants to be our BFF.  He seeks our friendship, is thankful for our gratitude, and loves to laugh with us. Praying is basically a one on one conversation with Him. Sometimes He even likes it when we stop conversing and we just listen! I find that the most difficult time in our dialoguing, I always like to get in the last word. It’s a minor flaw I have…

Yesterday in the pool, I was listening to Barbara Streisand’s Before the Parade Passes By on my shuffle device. I was laughing to myself because the swimmers in the lap lanes around me kept passing me by. Jesus and I had a good laugh over that but then I sensed He wanted me to actually listen to the lyrics! So I did.

Before the parade passes by
Before it goes on, and only I'm left
Before the parade passes by
I've gotta get in step while there's still time left
I'm ready to move out in front
Life without life has no reason or rhyme left
With the rest of them
With the best of them
I wanna hold my head up high
I need a goal again
I need a drive again
I wanna feel my heart coming alive again
Before the parade passes by...
Before the parade passes by

The Lord can speak to you even through a Barbara Streisand song! When you are faith-minded, all these secular songs have a whole new meaning for you to digest! Now this is what He told me:

I’ve gotta get in step while there is still time left
Translation: We are living in the end days, no time to waste; get my act together!

I’m ready to move out in front
Translation: join the army of God, don’t be a curb watcher!

Life without life has no reason or rhyme left
Translation: Life without Jesus has no reason or rhyme left. There is no life without the breath of Jesus.

I want to feel my heart coming alive again… Before the parade passes by
Translation: I want to feel HIS heart in me, coming alive again before the parade passes by.

For your New Year’s resolution I suggest we get our body and spirit in alignment with His Spirit. We need to keep our ears open and let Him speak to us any way He wants to. He will find a way to get our attention, even using a song by Barbara!

Stop making excuses, we need to be ready and prepared for this new season. Put on the armor of God, move out in front, hold your head up high, and feel His heart coming alive in you again! But most of all: Don’t let the parade pass you by!

Carrying the baton,

Maribeth Benson is our prayer side receptionist at Spokane Headquarters and resident comedienne.