This past Saturday, I was asked to play the organ for a memorial service at a church that I served going on 10 years ago. The service was for a wonderful gentleman, who was a tower of the church, both literally and figuratively: he was that really tall guy who sits in the back row of the bass section, week after week without fail, serves on important committees, is always willing to lend a hand to better the church community. I describe him in general terms, because every church has one of these people, and if you just think for a moment you can identify him or her!
I was struck by the power music has to heal people at these events. I was invited to play because there was a request for a half-hour concert, and people remember my playing as a powerful thing even though I only served that church for a brief time. The church was full, the choir sang beautifully – emotional settings of “Amazing Grace”, “Come Sunday”, and “Precious Lord, Take My Hand” – and people sat in apparent calm.
Sometimes it takes tragedy to really see the need for music – a gift from God that is impossible to understand or quantify – and yet it is with us almost every moment.
Amen, Scott. One of my greatest fears in life is that the government will some day announce it has identified the world’s most addictive drug. Big Brother will assure us that it is forever banning that drug for our own health and safety. And that drug is…music. Music takes us to different worlds. It lifts up. It soothes. It spreads joy. A daily dose of music is an essential daily occurrence for me.