Lately I’ve been pondering John Mayer’s song, “Gravity.” There’s a prayer in this simple soulful tune. It’s a prayer that each of us can identify with.
Mayer is bewildered by an invisible force in his life that keeps him from achieving his full potential. He calls this force gravity. It draws him to do the very thing that will destroy the beauty he desires in his life. He’s seen it pull down others whom he considers better than himself and this scares him.
The Bible refers to this power as sin. It’s not the list of dos and don’ts we associate with a Fundamentalist convention or a Sunday school lesson. It’s a force of our nature that is hard to resist. It keeps us from achieving all the good we hope we are capable of and can ruin whatever good we have accomplished.
In his letter to Christians in Rome, the Apostle Paul also identifies the struggle with sin we all face. He laments, “I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.” (Rom 7:15 NLT) He sees the power of sin at work in such a way that it wars against our desires to do what is good and he cries out for a way to find freedom from this dilemma. He then rejoices that in Jesus Christ he has found a way to overcome the power of sin (7:25).
John Mayer does not identify Jesus as the cure for his dilemma, but the last refrain of his song is a plea that each of us can own as our own: “Keep me where the light is.” Keep me in place where I can recognize my need for help. Keep me in a place where I can find the cure. Keep me in a place where I’m relying on Jesus every day to set me free from the power of sin and death. Keep me praying each day, “don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.” (Matt 6:13)