The LORD is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him. (Psalms 28:7 ESV)
As early as I can remember I listened to music, sang music, and enjoyed music. I married a beautiful lady who also loves music and singing. It’s no wonder a love for music also developed in our children.
Ellice, our firstborn bundle of joy, started singing when she exited the womb and hasn’t stopped since. She sang in the crib, sang in the tub, sang when we traveled, sang in church, sang in the shower, and still sings whenever the chance or a momentary silence provides an opportunity.
In High SchoolEllice was involved with a theater group on Guam. This collection of students from schools across the island presented a number of excellent musicals including Camelot, A Christmas Carol and others. The best students from each school worked on their musical abilities and prepared for the big opening day.
Ellice said she had a singing part in A Christmas Carol. She was part of the chorus. She said it was not a big lead but she was a part in many scenes throughout the musical. Beth and I purchased tickets and headed to opening night.
You can imagine the surprise on our faces and the flutter in our hearts when a young lady began a long solo. It took about two notes to recognize the voice and know Ellice had hoodwinked her parents.
She was part of the chorus to be sure but also had a major piece as part of the plot. Singing about bed clothes and parsing out the dead Scrooge’s things she delighted us and the audience with her talent. Humility is a great Christian virtue. That evening we were humbled at God’s gift in our daughter. At the same time we were proud of her abilities and rolled these feelings into one set of emotions.
Over the years our family listened to many musicals and sang along with one another and the tape, CD or record (yes we had all those things are one time or another). We would spend an entire day interspersing songs from different musicals into the events of theday.
We would start the morning singing Oh, What a Beautiful Morning to wake one another. A news program might bring out the chorus to Everything’s up to date in Kansas City. Talking about boyfriends and girlfriends might spark a rousing rendition of Matchmaker. Singing as a family has always been a delight.
I don’t have the chance to hear her much these days. She is grown, teaching school, raising children and singing for a church in another country. When we do get together you can be guaranteed there will be at least one songfest as a family.
It’s amazing how many people remember the songs in musicals. When you start singing part of Sunrise Sunset someone is bound to join in the refrain. Our hearts and souls respond in a miraculous way to the musical melodies of the world.
Starting with Moses and Israel singing “The horse and its rider He has thrown into the sea,” we have been singing praises to God ever since. We may argue over “acceptable” music but cannot deny the ability of music to teach, admonish and encourage us as believers.
Ellice astonished us with her solo. I still remember the stage, the song, and all the events of that night. God astonishes me regularly with a melody, a psalm, a musical song that grabs my heart and brings me closer to Him. I remember these moments.
When was the last time God amazed you with a touch of music? What musical score do you remember best? Is Oklahoma easier to remember than your favorite hymn or chorus? Maybe it’s time to rekindle the work of music in your soul and give God thanks through music.