Yesterday I had my guitar lesson. It's something I've been doing for a few months now - despite being more or less self taught (with some instruction from my virtuoso brother) as a teenager. I used to write songs and played for friends and considered it (and especially singing) an extension of my soul. Then I ignored this for most of my 20s. Not sure why. But music, for me, is like a boomerang - even if I throw it away, it seems to come back to me in some form.
When I... how do I put this... came back to a relationship with Christ in my late 20s, music romanced me again in the form of the church band. I provided harmony vocals for a while there. But I wasn't enamored with the guitar, so I gave it away to someone who desperately needed one. A few years later, I was blessed to have someone give me theirs since they weren't using it at all, and I started leading worship for a house church. That was an on-again, off-again affair, as my performance anxiety was sometimes debilitating. Fast forward a few more years to the church I've been with now for about five years. I occasionally led worship for a small group, then my life fell apart last year with the two miscarriages and icky diagnosis and I didn't play or sing for months.
And then... I dunno. I picked it up again. I felt compelled somehow. I felt a nudge from the Holy Spirit that it was time to start serving again. That was five months ago.
Okay, back to yesterday's guitar lesson. My instructor is also one of the worship leaders at church, and occasionally recruits people through the lesson vehicle. He's asked me to play at an upcoming service, which I agreed to. But yesterday he told me about a student recital of sorts coming up at a coffee house, and asked if I'd be interested in participating. I said "yeah, sure, why not?" and asked about the date.
May 12 last year was the day after Mother's Day. The day I started spotting, which was the beginning of my first miscarriage. The beginning of a year in hell that almost destroyed me emotionally and psychologically.
Hm. Ironic coincidence. Lord, is this your doing? I wondered. I quickly decided - yes. Yes I can make that.
I can think of no better way to spend that evening than to play my guts out and praise God for saving me from the brink of sanity,
for carrying me through the darkest time of my life
for surrounding me with friends and family who have supported me deeply and sincerely
for preserving my marriage and my job and my home and my very soul
for showering me with love and peace and yes, joy - even as I've walked through the fire.
How can I not serve? God gives us gifts so that we can give them away - not just for our own enjoyment. I'll let you know how the recital goes. I'm thinking two songs should be adequate.