I’ll write this out in longhand I said to myself this morning, (and I did.) It’ll make me feel closer to my story. (How much closer can you get, you may ask.) Let’s start at the beginning.
Leading the church choir for almost thirty years was the joy of my life. Or, should I say, “one of the joys?”
A position of leadership I never thought I’d have
The opportunity to lead a choir, was a miracle in itself. No music background for me, unless you count the fact that I played the cello in the high school orchestra for four years. I suppose that would count as music training. Then, I bought a used guitar and learned to play 3 changes. And, there was the accordion which allowed me to touch out a few tunes by ear. (I do have what some refer to as “a good ear”.)
In the early seventies, I joined our church choir. Not long after I joined, the current director retired from the position of leadership. Then there was a job opening, not a paying job, a job of service.
Two or three people turned down the position which had opened up. Someone said to me, “why don’t you take it?” (Obviously, they wanted someone who could wave their hand and tap their foot in time with the music.) Apparently, I looked as though I could do that.
Honesty is often the best policy.
My response to the invitation was, “I don’t think I’m qualified for the job.” One of the singers said, “I don’t think you are either.”
But, another lady, who happened to be a trained soloist, a music major, and the music teacher in our local school system, said, “I think you can do it. Why don’t you give it a try?”
(A note here..)
If you find yourself hesitating about your ability to accept a responsibility, and a person you know who is qualified in the area in question, says you can do it… do it!)
I loved it!
Years passed and the happiness I felt in the arena of music continued. My musical knowledge improved as the years went by.
The songs I chose for the choir filled my heart with joy. If I didn’t feel the joy, I didn’t choose it. And, that’s an important part of my story.
One or two of my choir members suggested that we sing some “higher church” music or “more classical” music. I said, “No. I don’t care for that style of music.”
Time went on.
And one evening a meeting was held for the musicians of the church. They included the organist, the pianist, the minister of the church and any choir members who wished to attend, and me.
The subject of choir music choices was introduced by someone, maybe me. The minister said to me, “What would you like to do about introducing different kinds of music?”
I responded, “If that’s what you want, you can get yourself another choir director.”
Instantly…A voice in my mind, (the voice I heard was a male’s voice), and it said:
“Who do you serve?”
I was astonished! I dropped my head to rest on my arms on the table before me. A moment passed. (See note at end of article.)
I raised my head, looked at the minister, and said, “I’ll do whatever it is you want me to do.”
The conversation immediately took on a different tone; pleasant, agreeable, “no big deal” they said. And continued, “just once in awhile when you run across something different, take a look at it.”
And the meeting soon adjourned.
What do you suppose was the chance I would have come up with such a thought on my own? I was determined to have it my way.
Who do you serve; the voice said. (It was a voice, not a thought.)
To be honest with you, I was serving myself. It was all about me at that stage of my service.
You’ll need to believe me when I tell you it was a male voice I heard in my mind. It was very clear, short, and to the point.
“Who do you serve?”
Today, more than 40 years have passed since this incident. It has remained a very clear memory. It has never happened again.
Who do you serve?
I serve Him!
(Note: When the meeting had finished, I told the lady sitting next to me, (a pianist from our church whose name was Shirley), what had happened to me; the voice, the question.. She said, “I wondered what had happened when you dropped your head down so quickly to the table in front of you.” )
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