Psalm 96:1 – Sing unto the Lord a new song: sing unto the Lord, all the earth.
Everyone enjoys listening to a gifted singer. So much so that we will pay to hear them perform either live or recorded. We buy their CD’s, download their music to a Mp3 player or computer, and listen to them on our favorite AM/FM or Satellite radio.
There is no doubt that we enjoy and value talented singing voices and my guess is, so does God. However, you might find it surprising as to which station He tunes to for His listening enjoyment.
Sing unto the Lord
Though I love to sing, I am realistic enough to know that I will never be a recording artist. At best I am an average singer with a limited range best suited to sing middle to low notes. In choir circles, this assigns me to the alto part. However, knowing this does not mean that I’ve always been content with it.
To be honest, there have been times as I’ve sat listening to a beautiful gifted voice, that I’ve wished that my vocal chords were as appealing. I find myself thinking, “boy, I wished that I could sing like that.”
A harmless thought right? Perhaps not.
For me, thoughts like that can lead to discontent and discontentment always leads towards the downward spiral of another feeling… inadequacy. Then inadequacy takes it even further down to the feeling of being insufficient, insignificant, and ineffectual. So therefore why sing?
What error! AND what a trap!
The four “I’s” of entrapment:
1. Inadequacy 2. Insufficient 3. Insignificant 4. Ineffectual –
These are all thoughts that diminish the talent or gift that God has given. They also dupe the possessor of the gift to believe that value lays only in the things that are in the spotlight. Therefore these thoughts not only devalue the gift but also…. the gift giver. Now that’s a sobering and alarming thought!
So how do I avoid the trap of discontentment?
- By changing my viewpoint.
Sing to the Lord a new song
First I need to understand that God did not create me an inadequate being. Instead, He has fully equipped me to be all that I am intended to be. It is this viewpoint – His viewpoint – that I will find contentment. And it is His viewpoint that becomes the principle to navigate by.
So how do I begin to adopt this?
- By reassessing my gifts and talents to see how they fit into His viewpoint… not mine.
Sing a new song
As earlier shared, my vocal range is best suited to sing the alto part in music. For those of you who may not be familiar, alto is the lowest female voice in a musical part that usually does not sing the melodic line. Sounds really exciting doesn’t it? Not really, so let’s look at it again with a different viewpoint.
What if I said that alto, the lowest female voice in a musical part, enhances the melody by providing harmonic use of low notes that bring warmth and listening interest to a song? This viewpoint brings a different meaning and changes the approach in how to implement the talent or gift. It directs attention to the purpose rather than the part and defines the reason why the composer added it into his musical score.
This viewpoint can be applied to any gift or talent that God has given to each of us. God is the composer and His kingdom and ministry are His musical score. We are rightly given the talents and gifts to enhance His work, His will, His kingdom and ministry. When we recognize that we are enhancers and that His work is the spot light, then we will be more harmonious and content to function as we are intended to. This will ensure that we will not fall into the trap of discontentment. The trap that diminishes God.
Harmony is a part in music that takes careful listening to achieve. It is a part that requires learning and tuning your ear towards the melody. It hangs in the background splashing color onto the musical canvas of the song. It is a component that carries its own beauty.
Earlier I had made reference as to which station God tunes in to for listening enjoyment. I like to think of it as the station that is static free.
So I encourage you, that whatever your gift or talent is do not turn it into static by neglecting it or yearning for one that you do not possess. It is a perfectly adequate gift, suited perfectly for you, with the purpose to serve Him perfectly. Now that’s music to His ears.
It is exciting to be invited by the Author of life to assist in the symphony of His kingdom. May we become harmonious as we accept the gifts and talents entrusted to us. And in so doing may we tune the dial to God’s favorite station, the one that sings in perfect harmony with Him and is completely free of static.
As a parting example of the beauty in harmony I have attached a music video for you to enjoy. While you listen to the harmonies and the color that they bring to enhance the beauty of the song may it serve as a reminder that you, through your gifts and talents, serve in the same capacity.