One thing about being in my current age group is that marketers believe that I have disposable income. As a result, songs from the decades when I was growing up often appear in commercials, or play overhead in a store, probably intended to persuade me to buy something. Even more than that, there is music that was already re-used from my parents’ generation, but that song’s “second life” (upon being covered by a new artist) became familiar enough to still show up again today.
While listening to a commercial the other day, I heard a line from a 1950’s “Doo-Wop” song, called “Sh-Boom”, which I probably remembered most recently from a 2006 movie. (No, I was not alive when the song was originally released in the 50’s.) The most recognizable line from this song (and, I think, the only one that was actually sung in the commercial) is “Life could be a dream”.
Since that tune brought back good memories, I obtained (i.e., legally purchased) a copy of the song, and was listening to it in the car, when I realized that there were a lot of simple Gospel messages contained in the lyrics. (And, as a classic 1950’s love song, I guess that makes sense, since the Gospel message in the Bible demonstrates the love of God for humankind.)
Skipping over the “Doo-Wop” lyrics, and repeated sections (which shortens the song substantially), let’s take a look:
Life could be a dream
If I could take you up in paradise up above
Jesus made it clear to His disciples that He was preparing a place for them.
“Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.
John 14:1-3 NASB
Although we could debate the finer points of Heaven versus the range of human views of “paradise”, it’s clear that Jesus does want to bring us to spend eternity with Him, and that it will be great!
If you would tell me I’m the only one that you love
Life could be a dream, sweetheart
God expects us to place Him as #1 in our lives. (God made this clear in the first of the 10 Commandments – see Exodus 20:3.) Even if we are dating or married, our love for someone else flows best when it comes from the love that we saw in Jesus, who loved us first. And, while the Bible might not use the term “sweetheart”, Jesus is described as a bridegroom (see Mark 2:19-20, John 3:29, Matthew 25:10, Revelation 19:7).
Hello, hello again, sh-boom and hopin’ we’ll meet again
The parable of the “Prodigal Son” (although that might not be the best name for it, see Who’s the Hero, Here?) in Luke 15:11-32 makes it clear that we are the ones who have wandered away, but God wishes for us to return.
So he got up and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion for him, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.
Luke 15:20 NASB
Oh, life could be a dream
If only all my precious plans would come true
If you would let me spend my whole life lovin’ you
Life could be a dream, sweetheart
God has plans for us (Jeremiah 29:11, while said to a specific group, is often cited as an example), and loves us even when we don’t realize it. However, we can embrace His loving plan for us, or we can push it away and think that we know better [hint: we don’t]. When we seek to follow His plan, I believe that the net result will be better for everyone!
Every time I look at you
Something’s on my mind
If you do what I want you to
Baby, we’d be so fine!
Jesus doesn’t just ask us to obey Him because He says so, or because He wants to make us jump through hoops (although He would be within His rights to do so). Instead, because of His love for us, He wants us to have the best possible existence, and He knows what will achieve that.
storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed.
1 Timothy 6:19 NASB
So, whether or not you like Doo-Wop music, I hope that you will remember that God loves you unyieldingly, wants the best for you, and knows that your ideal life will involve a healthy relationship with Him. Everything else outside of that is just doo-wop “filler”.
Scripture quotations taken from the NASB. Copyright by The Lockman Foundation.
(Lyrics from https://www.google.com/search?q=sh-boom+lyrics)