“Praying to a God” by Mr. Probz (LUKE remix)

I tuned in to my weekly discover on Spotify, absentmindedly listening to songs while I weeded through tangled thoughts. Midway through folding my laundry, the words from my stereo harnessed my focus into one single line of thought. I ran to my phone to check the name of the song “Praying to a God” by Mr. Probz (LUKE remix). I listened closely.

She’s praying to a god who won’t talk back
Her faith is dying to tears aside, she’s going off track
She’s praying to a god who won’t talk back, won’t talk back
Down on her knees said praying to a god who won’t talk back
Her momma believed that the devil had her dress on
So she’s out on the town tonight, she got her best on
Her daddy believed that the needle was a highway
So she powders her nose, she’s just looking for direction
It gets hard to feel the friction underwater
As she’s breaking down, she’s tearing out the borders
And too deep to save herself, she takes a pill that seems to help
Close her eyes, forget she standing at the alter

There was a story. The song writer uses euphemisms to gently describe a callous life, softened descriptions an intensely painful lifestyle surrounding drugs and hopelessness.

She’s praying to a god who won’t talk back
Her faith is dying to tears aside, she’s going off track
She’s praying to a god who won’t talk back, won’t talk back
Down on her knees said praying to a god who won’t talk back
– does she ever give up hope?
Her momma believed that the devil had her dress on
– Evil can come in disguise. Referring to a home wrecker?
So she’s out on the town tonight, she got her best on
Vengeance, put on her own dress…
Her daddy believed that the needle was a highway
– Her father is a heroin addict, so she looks for guidance from her heavenly Father, but He does not seem to guide her either…
So she powders her nose, she’s just looking for direction
– Powdering your nose sounds like a pampering gesture to get her back on her feet, like say cleaning up in preparation for a job interview. However, the reality of this story is the dangerous resort to cocaine as a means of feeling of elevation.
It gets hard to feel the friction underwater
 her coping strategy works for a moment, though she knows she’s drowning
As she’s breaking down, she’s tearing out the borders
– alas, the temporary high only leaves her feeling further submerged in her despair.
And too deep to save herself, she takes a pill that seems to help
– deeper in despair, she must find a stronger means of elevating herself, since she has more vertical distance to cover you could say
Close her eyes, forget she standing at the alter
– and life, through what could be the happiest moments, goes by in an apathetic blur

Then, I began pondering the meaning of the title. How curious it is that people have faith…and keep faith even when their god doesn’t respond to them or decide to let go. I dug up the novel song published in 2015 originally by the Norwegian duo Nico & Vinz. I’d heard of these guys! They did the radio hit “Am I Wrong?” that anyone with remote exposure to contemporary R&B music would know, but how come more people don’t hear this one? I always wonder what merits a radio hit. Praying to a God includes expressive language about the absence of peace and order, like what one would see without the presence of, for many people, God. Statistics show an obvious decline of organized religion. Why this is the first time in history that “no religion” dominates the results of surveys of Americans’ religious identity?

Throughout college, I’ve spoken with people who live with an absence of religion or are deeply grounded in one.

jbaz

Welcome to my thoughts. This is how I sound. https://soundcloud.com/jbazzz

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