In a song written for his sister’s wedding and relatively unknown by most people who have only heard of Jason Mraz as the one responsible for the popular radio hits (“The Remedy,” “I’m Yours,” “You and I Both,” etc.) and Grammys, there are insights that are not at first easily seen. Those who are a little more familiar with his expansive musical catalog might know of a song earlier titled “God Moves Through You” and later, officially recorded and released only once with a small non-studio collection of other pieces in 2006, renamed “God Rests in Reason.” It’s a beautiful song that is both technically simple and lyrically pleasing. It was in part inspired by and adapted from Kahlil Gibran’s famous The Prophet.
Whatever you might think of Gibran and the original source for the song’s poetic adaptation, this song strikes me as a moving reminder of how God is truly present in the lives of those in love, in the experience of family and in creation. The notion of God’s Spirit (Ruach, or “breath,” in Hebrew) in the world is one of the most ancient Scriptural Symbols of Divine Immanence. That “God moves through us” bespeaks a matter of faith we hold as believers who recognize God’s continued action in our lives, in our existence and in our world.
The following lines are particular striking to me.
And think not you can direct the course of
love itself directs the course of love
believe not god is in your heart, child
but rather you’re in the heart of god
The first part, that we cannot control love, but that love is a mystery in which we participate as free and finite members of the cosmos, echoing God’s own love in our own relationships, seems to be revelatory of so much that we overlook in our daily lives. It is also simply true: when we love, we surrender something about our control over to the mystery of love itself — love guides itself and is moved by nothing else. Love is greater than all things, including death and pain.
The second part, that God is not in our hearts, but that we should envision ourselves as within the heart of God, reflects the Thomistic notion of God’s sustaining all life in God’s infinite loving embrace. We are indeed standing within God’s heart, we come from that heart and we are destined to return to it — this is what is meant by salvation.
As I walked along the Tampa Bay this afternoon, it was this song I listened to several times and by which I was enchanted after not having listened to it for many months if not longer.
I hope you enjoy it too. Remember that God indeed moves through you.