• Deacon Greg Ventura

Have you heard the song Comfortably Numb by Pink Floyd? No, well let me tell you about it. It is from their album, The Wall.

From Wikipedia:

The Wall is a concept album about Pink, an embittered and alienated rock star. In "Comfortably Numb", Pink is medicated by a doctor so he can perform for a show.


The song ends with the following:

“There is no pain you are receding A distant ship, smoke on the horizon You are only coming through in waves Your lips move but I can't hear what you're saying When I was a child I caught a fleeting glimpse Out of the corner of my eye I turned to look but it was gone I cannot put my finger on it now The child is grown The dream is gone I have become comfortably numb” © BMG Rights Management, Concord Music Publishing LLC

This song talks about becoming comfortably numb in order to get on with life. When Pink was young, he had a dream, but that is gone. Now he feels nothing. I think many people can relate to that. It is the loss of innocence. In some cases, that motivates a person to make a difference, but in other cases, the person might just throw in the towel. Life is not easy, why not medicate? That is a terrible road to go down. It can lead to alcoholism, drug abuse, and sex addiction. Still many go down this road. It would seem that escapism started to become a way of life.

Do you know the song, Dear Younger Me by the Christian band Mercy Me?

Dear younger me Where do I start If I could tell you everything that I have learned so far Then you could be One step ahead Of all the painful memories still running thru my head I wonder how much different things would be Dear younger me, © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Spirit Music Group, Essential Music Publishing

Some people would like to change the past, but cannot. But we cannot dwell on the past. We live in the present and hope for a wonderful future with our Lord and Savior Jesus. Those of use who know Jesus need to remember that there are plenty of other people who not and they are in their own way comfortably numb or maybe as the Christian rapper, NF, says, “Paralyzed.”

I'm paralyzed Where are my feelings? I no longer feel things I know I should I'm paralyzed Where is the real me? I'm lost and it kills me inside I'm paralyzed © Nate Feuerstein / Tommee Profitt

I have shared these three songs to hopefully show that people can be going through a difficult time and you might not even know it. I think Comfortably Numb and Paralyzed share a lot in common. The world and life grinds people down when they have no hope. Those of us that know Jesus need to share with those who do not. There are people out there that are paralyzed, numb, they don’t care. We can see from the songs Comfortably Numb and Paralyzed that even though thirty-six years separates these songs, the issues do not. Everyone is searching for something.

Often we look for advice or wisdom in the music we listen to. Those of us that know Jesus need to lift up those that need a hand. We can’t change the past, but we can work on the present. We can change our present and possibly others. At the very least we can be present for others.

Talk to them. Listen to them. Pray with them. Love them like Jesus would. Then maybe they will not be paralyzed or want to become comfortably numb.

  • Deacon Greg Ventura

Maybe you know the hymn, “He who would Valiant be”? I have gotten to know it and love it, because our Bishop Julian Dobbs loves it and uses it at almost any occasion that he can. What you may not know is that he uses the original version of the lyrics. You can find details about the hymn at the following link:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/To_Be_a_Pilgrim






The table below contains the original version in the left column and the updated version in the right column. Read through both and you will find it interesting and then I will share why I love it so much.






Hopefully you have figured out by the title of this Blog that the third verse is my favorite. Hobgoblin, nor foul fiend Can daunt his spirit; I am pretty sure that I have shared that I was a gamer in my youth. My friends and I would gather at one of various houses to play Dungeons and Dragons. We were always on some epic quest for fame and fortune and often we would have to fight a variety of monsters. If you have seen any of the Lord of the Rings movies, the movie has humans, elves, dwarves, hobbits, ents, orcs, goblins, trolls, and various other kinds of monstrous creatures. The difference between goblins and hobgoblins is that goblins are more evil and hobgoblins are more mischievous. What resonates with me is that evil or even mischief in this case can be real. It may not be tangible, but it exists. I have never seen a demon or devil, but I believe they exist. I don’t say this to scare you, but to point you in the right direction, because this world will certainly point you in the other direction. If you look at the rest of the hymn, you will see that it is positive. ● Your spirit will not be daunted. ● You will inherit eternal life. ● The cares of this world and the opinions of others will not bother you. ● You will be secure in your faith and you will endeavor to continue on the path that God has chosen for you. Read Hebrews 11:1-13 to get a sense of how many others in the past got through difficult times by faith. So can we. Some of our hymns are directly inspired from the Bible, like this one.

  • Deacon Greg Ventura

Let me start by saying that I have asked the Lord for many things, but the phrase, “One thing have I asked of the Lord” does appear in Psalm 27. David wrote this psalm and like many others psalms he wrote, it is an inspiration to us as well in times of trouble. David was in danger of being killed by one of his adversaries, but we are in the midst of a pandemic.


Psalm 27:1 (ESV) The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

For all of the death that is going on around us, we seem to be doing well in New Jersey. At least that continues to be my prayer. In the midst of this terrible virus, the Lord is our stronghold. Like the song says: “You are my strong tower A shelter over me Beautiful and mighty Everlasting king You are my strong tower Fortress when I'm weak Your name is true and holy And your face is all I see” (c) Kutless 2005

Psalm 27:2-3 (ESV) 2 When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall. 3 Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident.

While this virus is not like a person that will stumble and fall, it does encamp around us. We don’t know who might have it, but yet we should not live in fear, because not matter what happens, we can be confident that God is with us always as He has said:

Matthew 28:19-20 (ESV) 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

I am sure that some of you miss not being able to worship at St. Georges. I know that I miss being there and seeing all of you. I look forward to the day when we can. If you feel the same way, that find comfort in knowing that King David felt the same way:

Psalm 27:4 (ESV) One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.

I sincerely appreciate that we are able to continue to worship online via Zoom. However, being able to worship in a community is even better. There is beauty in being able to sing with the rest of you. So the one thing I ask the Lord is that we may get back to a regular form of worship that is safe for all of us as soon as possible. Feel free to read the rest of this wonderful psalm on your own, but let me jump ahead, because David will often sing about a difficult subject, but still end on a positive note. This psalm is like that as well.

Psalm 27:13-14 (ESV) 13 I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living! 14 Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord! I too believe that we “shall look upon the goodness of the Lord.” We are in a storm and we just need to ride it out, remembering that Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, is in the boat with us. Let us continue to “wait for the Lord.” I love the use of repetition. It helps us to remember to “wait for the Lord.”

My prayer for you at this time is that you have courage to get through the difficult times we are in. We are here if you are in need of prayer. Please reach out to us.