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Don’t Give Up (2020)

“Hanging On By A Thread
(Don’t Give Up)” Lyrics:

Yeah, I know you’re struggling right now
We all are – in different ways
It’s like a new world that we don’t even know
It’s hard to sleep…even harder to dream
But look: you’ve got 7 billion brothers and sisters all in the same boat
So don’t panic. Life has a way of surviving and going on and on…
We’re not fragile – and we sure don’t break easy!

You know it’s so hard to cope
When you’re just hoping there’s hope…

We’re all hanging on by a thread
We’re all staring at the razor’s edge
But we’re not going to step off the ledge.
No!

If it could hate, it would hate you
It’s a monster, a cold, deadly phantom
It hides in the heart and brain, dreadful and merciless

It has no shape or form; it’s demonic, it has no rules
It will confine you to a dark, lifeless room if you allow it
So, fight back, shine a light on it
And most of all – don’t give up

You know that it’s right
So we just gotta fight…

Yeah, we’re all hanging on by a thread
We’re all staring at the razor’s edge
But we’re not going to step off the ledge.
No!

This is Alice Cooper in Detroit
Let’s keep fighting
Don’t give up
Call the suicide prevention hotline
1800-273-8255

Detroit Stories is Alice’s 21st solo album. It was released last month on February 26th, and it currently holds the #1 slot on Billboard’s Top Album Sales Chart. Inspired by Alice’s hometown, Detroit, MI, the record pays homage to “the birthplace of angry hard rock,” as Cooper defines it.

He also admits that the new LP includes “a lot of different flavors,” some of which we heard on The Breadcrumbs EP, released in 2019. The Detroit Stories LP is full of solid rock tracks – a throwback of sorts.

In fact, “I Hate You” and “Social Debris,” two tracks on the album, featuring the original lineup, could have easily been included on Billion Dollar Babies, School’s Out, or Muscle of Love. Other songs, including “Our Love Will Change The World,” “Wonderful World,” Shut Up and Rock,” “Independence Dave,” and “Hail Mary,” line up perfectly with that tongue-in-cheek Alice Cooper attitude.

We covered the COVID-19, single version of this week’s song, “Hanging On By A Thread (Don’t Give Up),” last Summer. The album version carries the same premise but focuses not only on the pandemic but fighting against darkness, isolation, despair, and depression.

“In some ways, you kind of think it’s God’s way of telling everybody, ‘Slow down. Everybody get back with your families.’ … I am the glass-three-quarters-full guy. I look at things like this and go, Yeah, it’s a horrible thing. But there’s also another side to it where everybody is kind of pulling together and at the same time, families sort of being forced to live with each other and get reacquainted.” – Alice Cooper

While the COVID-19 single release of this song focused solely on the pandemic, the album version goes one step further. The song calls for us to strike a match and watch the darkness flee.

If it could hate, it would hate you
It’s a monster, a cold, deadly phantom
It hides in the heart and brain, dreadful and merciless
It has no shape or form;
it’s demonic, it has no rules
It will confine you to a dark, lifeless room if you allow it
So, fight back, shine a light on it
And most of all –
don’t give up

You know that it’s right
So we just gotta fight…

Yeah, we’re all hanging on by a thread
We’re all staring at the razor’s edge
But we’re not going to step off the ledge.
No!

One of the more fascinating aspects of life revolves around perspective. There are many ways to view the events that transpire in our daily lives. If you look closely, it seems there’s a silver lining in most, if not all, of the things we experience – it’s the “lens” (or perspective) with which we view them that make them positive or negative.With every story and every encounter, there’s more than one angle. Other elements and unseen aspects are motivating the actions of humanity. There’s a war going on – a spiritual one.

With faith, we must remember there is more at play than what we can see or comprehend. We aren’t fighting a battle against flesh but instead against the enemy’s devices (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).

“As we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:18

Much like that of a virus or disease, the enemy seeks to steal life – to kill and destroy. We must be mindful of that as we navigate such scenarios. We must be alert and sober-minded as the enemy seeks to devour. We must resist the urge to succumb to fear and doubt. We must resist him and stand firm in our faith (1 Peter 5:8-9).

Have you ever noticed how uncertainty, doubt, and fear breed contempt? By design, the darkness uses these elements to keep us rattled, unfocused, and unwilling to seek our Creator through prayer and His Word. Yet another reason why we must always focus on His Light – darkness can not overcome the Light.

When we focus on threats such as disease, economic uncertainty, civil unrest, and the misery index of this world, our focus is often turned away from Him. It is very easy to lose our step if we’re not diligent and careful within our everyday lives.

Notice how in the song, Alice speaks to one familiar premise – persistence or perseverance. We ALL endure hardship and struggle, but we have been called to rise again each day and after each hardship – to “Never Give Up!” (Proverbs 24:16)

“Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord, your labor is not in vain.”1 Corinthians 15:58

No matter the storm, the trial, or the struggle, we are designed to press on – to overcome. Our Creator has designed humanity and all of life to survive and persevere. History is lined with stories of pain, suffering, and despair, yet somehow we “never give up.” We continue to endure (Hebrews 12:1).

Wrapping this up, we must remember, “The Best Is Yet To Come.” Our Creator has promised us this. It’s about overcoming the odds and pressing through the storm. It’s about wading through the darkness while searching for the “Light.”

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”Romans 8:28

We must learn to see what God is doing right before our eyes. We must remember that His Will and Way are before us. HE is in CONTROL. As events come and go, focus on what He is doing, NOT what the world is saying. Learn to focus on Him, NOT them (Colossians 3:2). Know that He and His Works are always Good (Romans 8:28).

The destination is imperative, but don’t lose sight of your surroundings as we ascend on our journey with Him. As we navigate the peaks and valleys of life, there’s something to be learned – wisdom and maturity are gained through experience. Allow His Light to lead you through and out of the darkness – “Don’t Give Up!

In conclusion, Alice ends the song with a disclaimer. A brief message to anyone who is succumbed to darkness and may be suicidal.

This is Alice Cooper in Detroit
Let’s keep fighting
Don’t give up
Call the suicide prevention hotline
1-800-273-8255

If you or someone you know is currently caught in such a dark narrative, heed Alice’s words and reach out to others for help. Through the lens and scope of this world, it’s easy to become trapped and lost, but together we are stronger and will endure.

As Alice points out (in the quote at the beginning of this post), with COVID-19 and other events taking place in this world, it’s as if the Lord has given us a reprieve and a chance to take catch our breath – an opportunity to take inventory and sift through what’s essential and what’s not.

Life has a way of adapting and evolving – surviving. As the song declares, “we’re all hanging on by a thread.” We are all struggling in different ways, and all 7 billion of us have altered some aspects of our existence in order to persevere.

As we take this next step in human history, let us seek Him and find new ways to integrate His Word into our everyday lives. Keep pushing through…“we’re not going to step off the ledge.” Remember, this too shall pass (and we will undoubtedly look back and realize this time was a gift).

The events transpiring are meaningful, needed, and unique (despite all the struggle and heartache). May we come to know (even if we don’t understand) that God is always good, no matter life’s circumstances (Romans 12:2).

That’s it for this week. Catch you next Friday.

‘Til then, Keep Walkin’ in Faith and Rockin’ with Alice!

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"God, I believe in you and your son Jesus Christ.  I believe that Jesus died on the cross and rose from the grave to save me. Today, I invite Jesus into my heart to stay.  I make you Lord over my life. Make me new. Wash me, Lord, and cleanse me. In Jesus Name, Amen"

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