I'm thinking of starting up a new business: Hallelujah Lyracist. I originally rewrote the lyrics for my 50th birthday. The second stanza was in honor of both my Dad and Craig:
Your faith was strong, despite the pain
Not for a moment did you complain
The sickness seeping deeper and deeper through you
You smiled from your wheeled chair, you wrote a book of dreams you shared
And from your lips you still prayed, Hallelujah
Yes... my Dad and Craig had a lot in common... They both never complained despite all the pain they were going through. They both were in wheelchairs in their final months. They both wrote books about their lives. They both kept their faith.
Craig, who was at my party, told me he was honored. He asked me if he could take the idea and rewrite the song again-- this time for his three children. He hired Greg Greer, someone who became a friend of his in his final months, to sing the song and it was played at his wake with pictures of Craig and the many happy times he'd had with his kids.
My Dad loved the song, too. So when he died, my Mom asked if I'd rewrite the lyrics again, to be played at his service. (Nothing like a little pressure!) But I did and felt happy with the results.
Now, of course, being such an experienced Hallelujah-lyracist, I decided to do one more version... This one is for Craig. I'd like to get someone to sing it (either Brian Thulsan or Greg Greer) and get enough pictures of Craig so I can do a slideshow just for him... but for now, here are the lyrics:
Hallelujah for Craig
Well, I heard there was a secret chord
To teach us love and it pleased the Lord
It's a story I learned well from having known you.
And so I'll try to spread your gift
And hope your loved ones' spirits lift
New words for you, the blessed Hallelujah
When we first met, your smile bright
You volunteered for Light the Night
Your helping hands, I saw a friend within you
You teased me with your twinkling eyes
Part-time flirt, but always wise
Your heart so full of joyous Hallelujah
The day I heard the tragic news
I told the Lord I was confused
How could He put this awful fate before you?
Had He not seen your love so strong?
Had He not heard you sing your song?
Words full of trust and faithful Hallelujah
You told me not to be afraid
You knew He'd heard all that you prayed
His plan unknown but always sure He loved you
There came a time you couldn't walk
You couldn't eat, you couldn't talk
But from your lips you still prayed Hallelujah
My cross I'll always proudly wear
You taught me that God hears my prayer
My faith forever strong from having known you
I saw you died with peace and grace
I saw the love upon your face
It's a warm and it's a joyous Hallelujah