Music is the universal language. Music is prevalent during this festive time of year. Music is imperative for a soul to really “sing.”
Music is very much a part of my family. Melodies and harmonies abound around a family who all love to sing and whose Matriarch (my lovely wife) is a Minister of Music.
We are in the midst of providing music for our church and community and this year we are experiencing everything from Lessons and Carols to the John Rutter Gloria. We have observed the music which lovely little ladies of our community have danced and have sung along with the local community orchestra.
Christmas is less festive, I believe, without music. In fact, I love it when the radio stations begin their round-the-clock playing of Christmas “tunes.” I sit in my office with one station playing them now.
What I am drawn to this year, however, is not the “Fa-la-la-la-las” but the intricacies of the crafted joining together of notes and rhythms and words to convey a message. I have attended the concert of our local community’s orchestra, L’abri twice—once for their annual Christmas concert and then for a special venue with our church’s senior adults. It was this second one that drew me in more than any other. I sat at one of the closest tables to the orchestra. In fact, it was pretty close to the conductor’s sweat produced by his wonderful leadership.
For the very first time ever my point of view allowed me to see up close and personal the violins, violas and cellos. I saw the expressions on the faces of the instrumentalists as they purposely and perfectly produced the notes in sync; I saw their fingers and hands meticulously touch the strings to produce the differing notes; I saw the bows eloquently glide across the strings creating the sounds that, when placed all together, captured my ear, my mind and my soul.
Music is more than notes or rhythms. It is the carefully crafted, beautifully placed mixture of each individual’s unique touch and perspective marrying their desires for the same beautiful outcome. Music of this season sings on in our hearts because we all know the tunes so well.
Music is a beautiful analogy for living in community with others. As co-inhabitants of this wonderful planet we should applaud each other’s’ contributions and listen for the harmonies they bring. Too many times, however, we tend to only hear the discord of those who may be different than us, go about life in a “peculiar way,” or tend to listen to the beat of a different drummer.
Maybe during this Holy Season we should just stop and listen.