What Would Billy Joel Say About You?

These lyrics from the song ?Pressure? by Billy Joel have always provoked me:

Now here you are with your faith
And your Peter Pan advice
You have no scars on your face
And you cannot handle pressure

He seems to be dismissing someone who claims to have faith and doles out simplistic ?Peter Pan advice? yet has no deep experience of suffering – scars on their face – and can?t handle stress.

What does the way you handle pressure say about your faith?

If Billy Joel knew you, what would he say to others about the way you handle heavy situations? Would he say you seem to rely on God and that despite your pain you are at peace? ?Would he say that you have scars on your face from many afflictions yet you seem to have a deep joy?

When we?ve gone through fire and flood and experienced the comfort and strength of Jesus, we can comfort others with the comfort we?ve received. ?We can give them much more than Peter Pan advice. ?We can share our faith.

At a recent funeral of a young man I was able to share with the family how my own brother had committed suicide years ago, so in some faint way I could relate to the pain they were going through. ?I shared what an elderly woman had told me to do, ?Lean on Jesus, just lean on Jesus.? Though words can?t begin to touch the family?s pain, one of them told me that it was meaningful that I had been through something like they were.

Take your pressure to Jesus. ?Cast your cares on him, for he cares for you. ?He might not remove it right away for he might be shaping you to be a witness to his sustaining power. ?You will get some scars on your face along the way. ?But those scars will say a lot, if in the Lord?s strength you can handle pressure.

Mark Altrogge

I’m a pastor at Saving Grace Church in Indiana, PA. I’m married to Kristi, have 5 kids, and a growing number of grandkids. I enjoy songwriting, oil painting and coffee, not necessarily in that order.