Light, More Light On Aarhus
As a worship leader and a songwriter I write songs for congregational worship. However, I have been looking for opportunities to write worship songs that can find their way outside the church-building - stylistically, linguistically and physically. By conviction and biblical precedent, I am expectant that my worship of God will lead to mission.
Recently I wrote a song for the annual festival in my home town of Aarhus, Denmark, in the hope that I would be able to prophesy into my city. The festival theme, this year, was "Light, more light". I tried to write a song on this subject matter that could connect with believers and non-believers alike. I contextualized the song in a setting that people in Denmark would understand well. Until the mid 1800s, our cities and towns were protected by night watchmen from sunset to sunrise. The song tells the story of an old night watchman who protects his town, lights it up and sings blessings over it.
The video below was filmed at one of the central city squares during the festival. People were drawn to us as we played through the song multiple times. An old man with a harmonica stopped to jam with us. A woman asked me to play her a song and in the middle of the busy square I stood with my guitar and sung this song to her face while she listened carefully. It was intense! I was telling her the story and she joined in on the chorus "Lys, mere lys over Aarhus". Right there, I was leading her in worship and prophetic intercession. Amazing!
I share these thoughts and this video in the hope that it instigates similar pursuits in your context.
For more thoughts on worship and mission, please read the blog Inevitable.
Here is a transliteration of the lyric ...
There is a man walking around the city's quiet streets
The night watchman, armed with weapons, armed with light
He does not fear what lies in the dark alleyways
As he patrols the streets, he sings hymns
About God, king, country and about good memories
From when he was young and the world was new
His quiet songs bless the people
As he calls out for protection for the city
Light more light on Aarhus
We are longing for the dawn
Light more light, God is for us
We love this old city
The city sleeps soundly for no enemy
Can disturb when the watchman is on guard
His weapon is a light, a morning star
He fears nothing, no danger
He carries light into the town square and to the gates
This small light gives hope that the darkness will end
He looks forward to the arrival of the dawn
When the day wakes his watch is done
Jesus, you are the bright sun in God's kingdom
We long for you to break into the night
Until then, we serve as watchmen
Spreading light in this darkness, hoping for our eternal home