Perhaps the Lord has blessed our music even though we are conscious of areas in our lives which we have deliberately not submitted to God. We should note, however, that God's present kindness is intended to lead us to a change of heart. If that doesn't work the Lord has other ways of getting our attention!
We are right in putting much emphasis on being in tune musically, but do we put sufficient emphasis upon being in tune with the Lord? And we dare not forget that our relationship with God is inseparably linked to our relationship with people. As John poignantly put it, everyone who loves the Father will love His children.
James exposed the total inconsistency of imagining we can use the same voice to both bless God and slander someone made in the image of God. So do we seek diligently to be in harmony with fellow musicians, or merely in tune with their instruments and voices?
And let's not overlook other relationships. Are we, for example, neglecting family responsibilities? Is there something we haven't put right with someone? Is there anyone we haven't forgiven?
Grappling with the issues already raised seems sufficient to keep anyone busy for several life-times. Yet, there are still further considerations. (Fortunately, He who dwells within you is exceedingly powerful!)
Have you sought God to ensure that the amount and nature of your practice sessions is in full accord with His will for you? Do you give proper priority to being spiritually prepared for your ministry? Prayer makes practice perfect.
Down through the ages, people have noted that almost any trivia can be put to a good tune and people will happily sing it. How far beyond trivia are your songs?
We can even love our ministry too much. Our deepest yearning must be to love and exalt the Lord Jesus. Both Isaiah and Amos prophesied the ruin of people who were more devoted to music than they were to the Lord.
The Christian musician's devotion to God should parallel the psalmist's attitude to God's city:
'If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
let my right hand forget [its musical skill].
If I do not remember you,
let my [singing] tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth;
If I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy.'
Judson Cornwall tells of a talented violinist who surrendered alluring scholarships to follow God's calling. As a missionary, however, he seized opportunities to give Christian concerts. Several times he felt the Lord telling him to abandon his violin altogether. Yet he persisted, arguing that his music would be an asset to his future ministry. Surely it would be irresponsible to discard his obvious talent.
Eventually, God spoke so firmly that he knew no amount of rationalising or bargaining would work. He quit his violin forever. As a result of this obedience, the Lord used that missionary in a powerful way to touch the lives of thousands of people.
More than our music, God yearns for our love.
Are you willing, at any moment, to give up your ministry, should the Lord so lead? Furthermore, is your loving devotion to your Saviour such that you would specialise in a type of music you intensely dislike, if He asked you?
If you have survived this barrage of questions without wanting to cry out for mercy, you're better than me! But, praise God, His grace is sufficient for us. We haven't arrived, but provided we keep pressing towards the goal depicted by these questions, claiming the righteousness and strength which is ours through faith in Jesus, God will be pleased to use us for His glory.
Not to be sold. © Copyright 1986, Grantley Morris. May be freely copied in whole or in part provided: it is not altered; this entire paragraph is included; readers are not charged; if used in a webpage, the new page is significantly different to this one. Many more compassionate, inspiring, sometimes hilarious writings available free online at www.net-burst.net Freely you have received, freely give.
For use outside these limits, consult the author.
(Please indicate which of my web pages you are referring to and ensure your return E-mail address is correct.)
Help complete the Great
Link your page to an evangelistic site. Here's how.