"The sound that you hear at the beginning of the final track of "Ghosts Upon the Earth" is the sound of some of the first heartbeats that we heard of our baby girl. Lisa and I had actually tried for years to have a child. We had even tried various medical procedures, and it just never happened for us. We had resigned ourselves to the possibility that we would never be able to have children of our own, and then one day, while visiting the doctor for something else entirely, we found out that Lisa was pregnant. Lisa is a very demonstrative person even in normal circumstances, so let's just say… everybody anywhere close to that vicinity definitely heard the excitement in that little exam room.
There are few things that can inspire wonder like the birth of a child – the intricacy and beauty and messiness of it all. Life is so fragile and so precious. These are the thoughts we start the last song of the album with. It's a reminder to remember that every moment is a gift. Every breath is miracle. The same love that called the cosmos into existence beats inside my chest with every heartbeat. It's all a gift.
What does one do with this gift though? Clutch with white knuckles and try to hold on to it? That is useless. We cannot control when we were born, and we cannot control what will finally take our lives from us. It is not clutched, greedy fists that lead us to peace and joy in this life. Instead it is surrender. It is letting go of the control and the fear, and offering all we are in love, accepting any pain that might accompany it, all as a part of this beautiful gift that is life.
Musically, the song is kind of a bookend for me, in some ways ending like we began. It starts very quietly and simply, expressing love and thankfulness. But then we bring back the boys' choir. This time, the boys enter with words reminiscent of the young Samuel in the Bible as they sing "Here I am Lord".
In the face of such an enormous and magnificent universe, one can either create illusions of grandeur for himself or admit his insignificance in time and space with humility. One can go through this life attempting to gain control or trying to gain life by holding on tenaciously; however, she will then certainly lose it. Perhaps it is actually only in the "losing" of one's life that one can truly find it. This has been my experience. The times that I have been truly happy, truly at peace, are those times when I have relegated my illusory control back to the loving hands of my creator. It is here that my eyes are clear enough to see the gift of life. It is here that I can separate the angst and the doubt from my heart. In this place, angst and doubt can work their purification in my mind from the idols and illusions that I hold on to, and faith is free to grow in my heart, making me free. It is here that the album ends. Open hands, open eyes, open heart." - Gungor