Music. Math. What entices you to fellowship? (Math??) Sometimes the singing. Where our joyful noise combines with musicians’ gifts to become a pleasing sound. I move into the Lord’s presence as my body participates, while my mind considers how I believe the words of my mouth.
Singing Blessed be Your Name as we approach Lent, I found myself asking fervently for the Lord to take away. The myth of control. Perfectionism. A critical eye and tongue. And then felt the nudge to focus on what the Lord gives. Good gifts. Perfect gifts. From God, whose very nature is to give to everyone without a second thought, without keeping score. James 1:5 (CEB)
What is God’s love language? Gifts. (Among other things :). Can I receive that? Our songs speak of the nature of God. How do we understand God? Experience. Words that shape our concepts and relationships. Love. Reminding us that we are part of a body, designed for oneness, needing each other to experience and express God’s image together.
My heart sang I Need you to Survive, truths that describe our aspirations, rather than our realities. Much as I try otherwise, I will harm you with words from my mouth. It’s gonna happen. Not on purpose. I might not even recognize it at the time. But if we are going to be in relationship, at some point I am going to do or say something that offends you. The question is, what are we going to do next?
Surprisingly, the answer came in our closing song, Oh Lord (good Lord, who knows everyone’s struggles). I don’t think we sing about this much. Maybe because seventy times seven sounds more like math than like music. Or it only works in reggae? Or because actually practicing forgiving each other seventy times seven seems beyond us.
But it goes along with our other math. That one means relationship. Some say one is three. In Jesus, one is many. If we are to be one, to truly be in relationship, we are going to need to experience some radical forgiveness. Like all good gifts, flowing from God into us and through to each other.
Math in music. Flow charts. All gifts from above. May we open ourselves to receive God’s gifts during Lent.