Monday, December 31, 2012

Music Monday - Old School

Y'all know I love music, but I heard a lyric yesterday that I said, "Yes! Exactly!"  I can't remember the exact words, but it was something like, "A melody is like hearing a memory."  It's so true for me.  I can hear a song and it's like I'm right back in the moment where the event or time is happening.

Today's Music Monday is like that for me. One of my earliest musical memories is of this work.  My dad would put it on during Thanksgiving at our house, and it would play all through the Christmas season.  My parents always asked people who didn't have anywhere else to be on Thanksgiving to our home to share the meal with our family.  So although our company changed through the years, this piece of music was always with us.

Handel's Messiah.  Most people know the Hallelujah Chorus, but the entire work is amazing.  The orchestration gives me chills.  It is a work describing Jesus as our Messiah.  For us as Christians, it is a triumphant work, reminding us that He is, He was and He is to come.  I have so many "favorites" in the work. The Amens at the end of the work are what I envision it to be like when Satan is defeated and Jesus is done with him.  Amen, Amen, Amen.  At the end of the Messiah, Handel wrote S.D.G. for Soli Deo Gloria "To God Alone the Glory".  It means much more to know that the writer of this work believed what he was writing.

If you haven't gone past the Hallelujah Chorus in The Messiah, please do.  You will love it, and may find a new "favorite"!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Music Monday - All is Well

This weekend has been hard for everyone I think.  I haven't been able to get online, watch the  news or listen to the radio without getting choked up or even crying.  The tragedy in Newtown, Conneticut, is one we will never forget.  I happened to be at home on Friday watching the news as it unfolded and I went through so many emotions, but fear and anger seemed to be at the forefront.  As a former first grade teacher, and the mother of a kindergartener, I absolutely could not wrap my mind around what was happening.  And although I went and spent the night with my best friend from high school, and we went and saw the Broadway show Mary Poppins (which was so much fun), my heart was heavy all weekend.  

Yesterday was Sunday, and I woke up not wanting to go to church.  Not a good thing to confess, I know, but I really just wanted to be home.  I felt God reminding me that we need to be together and I needed to be in His house, so I went.  (and the fact that we just don't stay home from church just because)  Our church choir performed their Christmas cantata.  It was absolutely what I needed.  Music can soothe and touch my soul like nothing else.  The songs told the Christmas story of course, but they did more than that.  They worshipped and exalted the name of Jesus.  They reminded us of what and who is our peace in this crazy, messed up world.  And they reminded us that we know the end of the story!  Jesus wins!  Isn't that awesome?  I hardly had any mascara left at the end of the service, but the one song that I think everyone felt was perfect for the day was the last one.  All is Well.  It's so true.  All is really Well.  Maybe not on the surface, and it doesn't mean that horrific tragedy, sickness, famine, and all sorts of sin aren't surrounding us daily, but All is Well if we know the One who is and was and is to come.  He is our peace.  Truly.  My favorite line in the song says, "For tonight darkness fell into the dawn of love's light."  Darkness can't stand amid the light of Jesus.  I'm holding on to Him as my light and my peace right now, because there sure isn't any in this world of our's.  Hold onto Him too, my friends.  He is everything we need.  

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A little kindness

I am in the middle of the Advent Study from Good Morning Girls and one of the things that we have been encouraging each other in is doing random acts of kindness.  I also read Courtney's blog and follow her on twitter and she has this event called Light Em Up.  It is a way for our families to light up our world(s) during the Christmas season.  It has some very fun ideas, and though our family is not going all out with it, we are doing some of the activities and talking through some of the idea behind it. My kids love to pay for the people behind us in drive thrus.  I think it feels sneaky and it is cool for them to think about.  So that is one thing we have done.  

Today however, I was on the receving end of a bit of kindness.  It was a small thing.  The person giving this kindness probably thought nothing of it, but it made my day.  I had my carpets professionally cleaned today (Hallelujah!) and one of the men who was cleaning them came over to me as they were finishing and said, "I just want to tell you how I love all the scripture throughout your house.  I really appreciate the respect you have for it."  Well, I almost started crying.  You know, as a mom, sometimes it seems like I am floating upstream without a paddle.  And that man just reinforced that what I'm trying to do matters.  Those words of Jesus will sink in, and my children will appreciate it and love it.  I still remember the scripture verse that was on the wall of my childhood bathroom for years and years because I saw it so much.  So anyway, I just wanted to share that a quick word of encouragement could be just what someone needed.  Say it.  Do it.  Don't be afraid.  

Monday, December 10, 2012

Music Monday - Momma Style

Today's Music Monday is coming to you Momma Style.  My sweet, precious, way too big eight year old had his first solo in church yesterday in the children's Christmas program.  My sweet friend Jennifer suggested yesterday after I posted his picture on Instagram that his solo should be my Music Monday selection, and she was right!  I mean, who else could be better for me to feature?  

With my musical background I have always loved for my children to sing with and without me.  I would never have dreamed that my son would be brave enough to do a solo though.  This is the boy that only a couple of years ago wouldn't even walk down the aisle to carry shoeboxes at Christmas time.  He hated to be at the center of everyone's attention.  I was absolutely shocked, blown away, gobsmacked, etc (you get the picture) when his grandma, AKA Golly, told me he wanted to do a solo.  We practiced and practiced.  He was so nervous, but not nearly as nervous as his daddy.  

And even though I am his momma, and certainly biased, I think his first solo was definitely a success.  
This song is very fun too, "Jesus is here.  The light has come."  What a celebratory message!  You will be tapping your toes and humming it all day if you listen to it!  So thank you for indulging me for a Monday.  And thanks to Jennifer for the great idea.