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02 January 2011

A Cold and Broken Hallelujah

Leonard Cohen writes of a "cold and broken hallelujah" in what has become a new favorite of mine. KD Lang's version is particularly striking.

I know what a broken hallelujah is. I know what it is to wring a cold and broken hallelujah from a broken, bruised and bleeding body, heart and soul. The past year has had many such moments. Yet they ended in "hallelujah."
A broken hallelujah is one that emerges from a place of brokenness and yet affirms a living, sovereign, inscrutable God. The awe of that divine majesty gives birth to the hallelujah. Even when it is a cry of pain.
The existence of that Other is a mantle staving off the desperate cold of isolation. Even in despair the psalmist is never abandoned. Hallelujah.


  1. You've put my 2010 into words, gorgeously.

  2. Thank you (most faithful reader)! I'd love to know where Leonard Cohen got his language; I got mine from him.