Do you hear that?
Stop for a second. Listen.
It’s faint but undeniably present. Can you hear it?
It seems to be . . . a melody. It is distant, almost inaudible.
If you strain you will hear it more clearly.
It is beautiful, wistful, enrapturing.
This is the sound of your life.
Indeed, Life is a song.
It’s true. It may not feel true but it is true.
You may be thinking, “Alright, sister, step into my life for just twenty minutes and you will quickly change your tune.” You may look at your life only to see a pace that is unsustainable, a to-do list that is unattainable, emotional baggage that is unescapable, kids that are (at times) untamable, relational challenges that appear unalterable, fears of worst-case scenarios that seem ultimately unpreventable. Life is song? “No,” you retort. “Unless the song is some wild, intense, scream-o metal piece. The premise of life as a song is utterly unfathomable.”
If this is you, know that I have been where you are. I was probably there yesterday. Our ability to hear and appreciate the symphony that is our life changes, but the truth that life is a song remains. It is rich and melodic. It is a feast for the ears and a delight to the soul that stops to listen.
Have you ever thought about the sheer power of music? It uplifts, it transports, it creates euphoric delight. Though music’s mystic influence over us remains largely a mystery I would like to suggest that part of its power lies in its progression of diverse melody. A good composition ebbs and flows; it progresses from major keys to minor and back to major again. Its volume and tempo may fluctuate evoking distinct, varied emotional responses from the listener.
Life is like that.
Just like a musical arrangement life has light, airy movements that carry you into the feel of a youthful frolic. It has overtures which speed ahead moving the piece along. Some parts are so soft, so sedate that you are lulled into serene submission. Then suddenly the loud timpani burst forth shocking you and setting your senses alert.
It is all of these parts that create the beauty of the song that is your life. Just one would be boring, dull, unsatisfying. But the rich diversity of all the parts strung together masterfully by the Composer is what makes it beautiful.
A few years ago the Lord relocated me. I was established in my career, had an excellent community of believers around me, family close by, and a brotherhood of close friends that made even the darkest days seem sunny. Then everything changed. And I mean everything.
I will spare you the details, but at God’s leading I found myself in a new community, with a different (and much less prestigious) job, without the security of my home, my church, my friends. The context I found myself in was quite foreign to me. I didn’t feel like I fit. I found myself saddled with emotions and grief over the change that felt too big to handle and no one to share them with. Tack on to that a season of testing in terms of spiritual battles. It was as though the difficulty level had been turned up a notch and no one warned me. New battles and less success equals an overwhelming sense of anxiety, depression and defeat. Cue ominous music.
The sound of that season is beginning to fade out now. Today, I traveled back to what I used to call home. As I drove past my old workplace suddenly and without warning, an audible whisper escaped my lips, “Thank You.” I wasn’t sure at first where this unanticipated expression of gratitude came from, but as the building disappeared in my rear view mirror I was able to wrap my heart around it. I realized in that moment just how good this whole mess had been.
I realized anew how much the Lord wanted to teach me, how much He wanted to grow me, how much He wanted to be with me. I realized that in His providential wisdom He knew right where I needed to be in order for all of this to happen. This season was not a series of unfortunate of events, an unexpected bump in the road, a wrong turn. No. This season was just as He would have it to be. It was the work of my Master Composer stringing together a beautiful, harmonic blend of minor chords which would ultimately swell into a jubilant refrain.
Life is a song.
All of it. Every part. Your life is a symphonic masterpiece straight from the pen of a loving, skillful Songsmith. He delights to watch you live it and desires that it bring you delight. He yearns for you to let go and simply surrender to the sound of it.
This melodious sound is comprised of many notes. These notes may come in the form of a quiet walk of solitude, a mundane morning routine, or a tender kiss in the moonlight. They may come in the form of financial challenges, in the loss of a loved one, in the death of a dream. These notes are not to be heard in isolation but rather as a harmonic composite which rings out revealing something of the Composer Himself. Namely this: