Weddings do hold a great fascination for human kind. They consist of great joys, traditions, promises, losses and gains, endings and beginnings. They transport us through time, looking back, looking forward, remembering those who have gone before and those yet to come. They tie us to our families and they unite what once was separate. They provide hope as we express faith and love. They amplify our faith to the witnesses who gather, as we are reminded of the Great Designer’s plan for human kind to be joined as one, to live in love and commitment to one another. At my daughter’s wedding yesterday, I was reminded by the best man (in his humorous yet poignant speech) that a wedding day poses a great question to Christian couples: will this relationship honour Christ? The day is the question. The marriage is the answer.
I had the privilege of being asked to organise a team of 7 musicians, most of whom I did not know, for a friend’s wedding on the weekend just gone. We had just one practice before the day, yet I am pleased to say the result was pretty great! (Out of interest, the songs we led were “Beautiful Saviour” (Stuart Townend), “This Life I Live” (Michael Morrow, EMU) and “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing”).
But why should I be surprised that it worked well? The team was comprised of committed Christians who have learnt to balance their musical zeal with a great deal of humility and selflessness. So when it came to figuring out how to work together as a team, and how to best arrange the music, we were on the same page.
It’s like when you meet Christians from another place for the first time and have an instant affinity, an easy friendship. This comes because we have a dad in common, our heavenly Father! We are united in Christ and share a family resemblance in our attitudes. When there is a servant heart, a willingness to (musically) do less, to be restrained and to wait on each other, there is much unity and it can lead to a beautiful harmony.
This is certainly the challenge for all Christian musicians: to move from pride, insisting on our own way and seeking our glory, to an attitude of humble servant-heartedness. It is worth reminding ourselves of this every time we turn up for music practice at church.
Nb. In the process of working with this team I happened to meet a fellow blogger who opened with the question “You’re Seven Notes of Grace aren’t you?” (he was married to one of the musicians). Small world! (I felt famous!) I hadn’t even realised he lived in the same city. You might like to visit some of his reviews over at Eternitainment: “Eternitainment seeks to bring this Christian worldview and the beliefs of modern entertainment together for a heart-to-heart chat, to hear what each is saying. Eternitainment invites you to listen in and join the conversation.”