Ten things I learnt from Mumford and Sons
I go to great lengths to find the best lyrics for a situation I may find myself in. I listen to songs largely for their lyrics rather than the musical arrangement. A band I don’t have to go to heaps of effort to find good lyrics from is Mumford and Sons. I love their new album, and recently scored a ticket to their November gig in Sydney, so to celebrate I thought I would kick it old school and relive some of their greatest lyrics. They are such poets! Their lyrics are layered with so much meaning and allusion that breaking down their songs into life lessons is such an easy task. So easy in fact, that I’m going to share ten times Mumford and Sons said the realest things ever.
1. “So I’ll be bold, as well as strong and use my head along side my heart.” - I Will Wait.
So sometimes, there are the things you know instinctively. You may feel it in your gut as well as your heart when it races or stalls depending on what’s going on. Then there are the things you know, objectively, in your head. I’ve found that when making decisions I need to use both these parts of me, even though that’s hard for someone who generally wants to rush into things and go with my gut alone. But I’ve definitely found strength in doing so. True story.
2. “Plant your hope with good seeds.” - Thistle and Weeds.
Pinning all your hopes on something that isn’t going to bring life or bear fruit is just insanity in my book (and Mumford & Sons’ book too apparently!). Don’t put all your worth in something that is going to end or let you down. Just don’t. See elsewhere on this blog for hints of what you can put your hope in ;)
3. “In these bodies we will live, in these bodies we will die. Where you invest your love, you invest your life.” - Awake My Soul.
Similar to the above. What we do with our lives- the things we lend our time and energy to, the things we say, the people we choose to give our time to, all say a lot about us. Choose wisely! Choose life! This doesn’t mean you have to go sell everything you own and live on a deserted rainforest island working with a community- although it could, and that would be awesome ! – to have a meaningful life, but it does mean that in whatever you do, there should be a sense of meaning and purpose to it.
4. “Love, it will not betray you, dismay, or enslave you. It will set you free.” - Sigh no More.
The truest love will always help you be the person you are meant to be! Real, self sacrificing love bears fruit and helps you find freedom. Simple. See 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 for more details (yeah its that bible passage everyone reads at weddings).
5. “Hold on to what you believed in the light, when the darkness has robbed you of all your sight.” - Hold on to what you believe.
Basically, when things get rough, don’t run for the hills. Stick at what you’ve committed to when things get hard. That’s where strength, perseverance and virtue is built. It's where you discover what you're made of, and the dark times also puts your belief system to the test. Who needs a belief that is only suited to the joyful times when the human experience is riddled with struggle?
6. “Lead me to the truth and I will follow you with my whole life”. - White Blank Page.
When we come into contact with something intrinsically and objectively true, the natural reaction to that is to follow it with all we've got.
7. “I will learn to love the skies I’m under.” - Hopeless Wanderer.
Gratitude is a lesson I think we will probably spend our whole lives learning. Its easy to be grateful when things are going amazingly, but when things aren’t ideal, that’s when gratitude is a real virtue.
8. “And I look up, I look up, on my knees and out of luck, I look up.” - After the Storm
I guess an extension of the last one. When things are going rough, where do you look for help, hope, encouragement, and sustenance? To whom or to what do you go?
9. “And I'll find strength in pain. And I will change my ways, I'll know my name as it's called again.” - The Cave
Sometimes its when we are hurting the most that we see true strength and support. From others, from our faith, from God, or maybe even ourselves. Its that old Rocky quote- “get knocked down seven times, stand up eight”. Life isn’t about not making mistakes, its about making them time and time again but choosing to try not to one more time than you fall.
10. “Cause I know my weakness, know my voice. And I'll believe in grace and choice. And I know perhaps my heart is farce, But I'll be born without a mask.” - Babel
I’m a Christian. I believe in God’s grace that makes any situation a little less bleak than it appears to be on the face of it. So while I know how flawed I am, I also know how extremely loved I am. And that makes me in turn, want to love God all the more. This quote is probably one of the most profound and I could spend hours on end contemplating the gravity of it. But what I love the most is that I know I will spend my whole life integrating myself to be the most whole person I can be. So that my intentions and my actions are the same. Our hearts get wounded and clouded with the hurts of life and it’s about journeying back to who God created us to be without all those pitfalls, “without a mask”.