While this blog got its name from an old twenty øne piløts song called “Taxi Cab,” my second choice would be to use something from “The Beautiful Letdown” by Switchfoot. The line – “set sail for the Kingdom come” – would have been a good blog title! I’ve intended to post about the song for some time, and it fits in with this week’s other posts, so here we are.
The theme of “The Beautiful Letdown” is that while we don’t like being let down or disappointed, it’s a beautiful and blessed thing when we are let down by the things of this world, because that is when we can find God. In Jeremiah 3:21-23, God calls His people to turn back to Him from the many temptations of the world in striking language:
“A voice on the bare heights is heard,
the weeping and pleading of Israel’s sons
because they have perverted their way;
they have forgotten the LORD their God.
“Return, O faithless sons;
I will heal your faithlessness.”
“Behold, we come to you,
for you are the LORD our God.
Truly the hills are a delusion,
the orgies on the mountains.
Truly in the LORD our God
is the salvation of Israel.”
The language is striking because we don’t like being told that the things we worship are a delusion, and we don’t like being accused of spiritual adultery, but regardless, being let down from the delusions of the world is a beautiful thing, because it’s a requirement for knowing God more deeply. Back to the Switchfoot song, the lyrics say it’s beautiful when we find out that “all the riches this world had to offer me would never do,” but that “we’re still chasing our tails and the rising sun.” It also says its ok to be “painfully uncool” by the world’s standards because those are the wrong standards. We are “the church of the dropouts, the losers, the sinners, the failures and the fools.”
But perhaps my favorite part of the song is the bridge:
“Easy living, you’re not much like your name
Hey, you look just about the same
Won’t you please take me off your list
Easy living, please come on and let me down”
Wouldn’t it be nice to be “off the list” of messages from the world lying about how amazing it is, and how easy things would be if we just bought the right products and had the right lifestyle? If only we floated along with the world’s idea of progress? However, as C. S. Lewis wrote: “We all want progress…but if you’re on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive.” Being let down by the world is a good thing.
To listen to the full song, click on the video below.
To just read the full lyrics on genius.com, use this link: https://genius.com/Switchfoot-the-beautiful-letdown-lyrics
“But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ” – Philippians 3:7-8
2 thoughts on “The Beautiful Letdown”
I’m familiar with Switchfoot’s “Dare You to Move,” but not “The Beautiful Letdown.” The lyrics are thought-provoking and ring true in many ways. Thanks, Todd, for sharing their message.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Both are on the same album. Some of the other songs are a heavier sound but the whole album is good.
LikeLiked by 1 person