Monday, May 23, 2022

When God Calls, He Also Provides

 My Erler's Musical Expressions music party (not a recital) yesterday was well received. Five of my seven families were able to be there.  Parents and grandparents of my students came to me afterwards and thanked me for my work, and especially for focusing on the joys of music.  I think it all goes back to my early training in Environmental Education, Kindermusik, and Musikgarten:  "Process, not product is the key."  and "Follow the Child."  In other words, I try to focus on each one's interests and learning style.

At the party, I let each student volunteer to play a piece of their choice, and every one did, even though I didn't require it.  I also focused on the community that was present, briefly introducing the families to each other.  Because we're all in this together--teacher, student, and home.  It's not my accomplishment; it's all of us combined.  As the saying goes, "It takes a village."

My dear hubby, Paul, was such a big help!  Setting up, cleaning up, and just giving moral support. I'm so blessed to be married to him.  It was a lot of work, but it was well invested.  

When my mentor in Michigan, Kaye Phelps, guided me into teaching, I felt unqualified.  But God has given me what I needed, because this is a ministry He has called me to.  I'm reminded of the passages in Exodus where God called Moses to free the Israelites from Egypt.  He kept telling God, "I'm not a good speaker.  I can't do this."  But God told Moses, he would provide what he needed.  And He did.

After 30 years of teaching music, I see even more clearly how God has used me--not only for the sake of music, but for the sake of my many students and families over those years.

I don't have the energy I did 30 years ago, but I'm thankful the Lord continues to give me the strength to serve him in this way.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

The Core Motivation for My Writing


Although we see evidence of God, Providence, Nature—or whatever you choose to call it—he /she/it is still unknowable to our limited perspective. I’ve read that a relationship with this entity is like a dance.  The lead partner must step back so the follower partner knows to step forward.  In the same way, God—our partner—may seem to be withdrawing or stepping away from us in times of confusion, doubt, or suffering.  However, this is really an invitation for us to draw closer to him.  It’s as though he is saying, “I have more to show you.  Come closer to me.”  This reminds me of what Aslan kept telling those he was taking into paradise in the seventh Narnia book, The Last Battle:  “Come higher up, come deeper in.”

          In the end, it all stems from Love—not a coddling or clinging sort of love.  It’s a love that transcends and remains unknowable to our finite minds.  Once we move “deeper in” as Aslan said, we begin to see what St. John wrote in the Bible, “Dear friends, we are already God’s children, right now, and we can’t even imagine what it is going to be like later on.”   Or St. Paul who said, “Now all that I know is hazy and blurred, but then I will see everything clearly, just as clearly as God sees into my heart right now.”  (Quotes from The Living Bible Paraphrase)

          This love and the dance it creates is the common thread that runs through all my works, and through all my life, for that matter.