Thankfulness – Day 10

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Today we give You praise and thanks for the gifts of music and art. Thank You for music and song so that we may praise and worship You fully. Thank you for the ability to create art to beautify this world. Help us keep Your song in our hearts.

Psalm 98:4-6

Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises! Sing praises to the Lord with the lyre, with the lyre and the sound of melody!
With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the Lord!

1 Chronicles 15:16

David also commanded the chiefs of the Levites to appoint their brothers as the singers who should play loudly on musical instruments, on harps and lyres and cymbals, to raise sounds of joy.

1 Chronicles 22:15-16

You have an abundance of workmen: stonecutters, masons, carpenters, and all kinds of craftsmen without number, skilled in working gold, silver, bronze, and iron. Arise and work! The Lord be with you!

Enjoy the music and art our great God has given us.



Images: Google Images

Spiritual Gifts

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When I was a child, my parents insisted I take piano lessons. There were times I enjoyed it, and times I hated it. But I developed an appreciation for music due to that training. Later, when my children were very small, I played children’s songs for them. Occasionally, I will still play a few Christmas carols.

Reading music was a gift I wanted to give my own children. I was thrilled that my son has a great deal of musical talent. Not so much with my daughter. In fact, I was very disappointed my daughter did not take the same interest in music.

But then I recalled our spiritual gifts.

We all have at least one spiritual gift, and our gifts are different from each other. Music is not one of my daughter’s gifts. She doesn’t have to play the piano to exercise her spiritual gifts.

Are you curious what your spiritual gifts might be? Here’s a Spiritual Gifts Assessment that will help you discover what Spiritual Gifts God gave you. Once you discover your gifts, you can develop them, and be of better service to God’s Kingdom.

Walk in His Light.

Image from Google Images

Making Music With What We Have



On Nov. 18, 1995, Itzhak Perlman, the violinist, came on stage to give a concert at Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City.  If you have ever been to a Perlman concert, you know that getting on stage is no small achievement for him.  He was stricken with polio as a child, and so he has braces on both legs and walks with the aid of two crutches.

To see him walk across the stage one step at a time, painfully and slowly, is a sight.  He walks painfully, yet majestically, until he reaches his chair.  Then he sits down, slowly, puts his crutches on the floor, undoes the clasps on his legs, tucks one foot back and extends the other foot forward.  Then he bends down and picks up the violin, puts it under his chin, nods to the conductor and proceeds to play.

By now, the audience is used to this ritual.  They sit quietly while he makes his way across the stage to his chair.  They remain reverently silent while he undoes the clasps on his legs.  They wait until he is ready to play.

But this time, something went wrong.  Just as he finished the first few bars, one of the strings on his violin broke.  You could hear it snap – it went off like gunfire across the room.  There was no mistaking what that sound meant.  There was no mistaking what he had to do.

People who were there that night thought to themselves:  “We figured that he would have to get up, put on the clasps again, pick up the crutches and limp his way off stage – to either find another violin or else find another string for this one.”

But he didn’t.  Instead, he waited a moment, closed his eyes and then signaled the conductor to begin again.  The orchestra began, and he played from where he had left off.  And he played with such passion and such power and such purity as they had never heard before.  Of course, anyone knows that it is impossible to play a symphonic work with just three strings.  I know that, and you know that, but that night Itzhak Perlman refused to know that.  You could see him modulating, changing, recomposing the piece in his head.  At one point, it sounded like he was de-tuning the strings to get new sounds from them that they had never made before.

When he finished, there was an awesome silence in the room.  And then people rose and cheered.  There was an extraordinary outburst of applause from every corner of the auditorium.  We were all on our feet, screaming and cheering, doing everything we could to show how much we appreciated what he had done.

He smiled, wiped the sweat from his brow, raised his bow to quiet us, and then he said, not boastfully, but in a quiet, pensive reverent tone, “You know, sometimes it is the artist’s task to find out how much music you can still make with what you have left.”

What a powerful line that is.  It has stayed in my mind ever since I heard it.  And who knows?  Perhaps that is the way of life – not just for artists but for all of us.

Here is a man who has prepared all his life to make music on a violin of four strings, who, all of a sudden, in the middle of a concert, finds himself with only three strings.  So he makes music with three strings, and the music he made that night with just three strings was more beautiful, more sacred, more memorable, than any that he had ever made before, when he had four strings.

So, perhaps our task in this shaky, fast-changing, bewildering world in which we live is to make music, at first with all that we have, and then, when that is no longer possible, to make music with what we have left.

Jack Riemer, Houston Chronicle

He Sings For You


How do you feel when you sing? (although I can’t carry a tune). I feel happy. My heart is lifted. My spirits rise. I feel closer to God.  

Zephaniah 3:17

The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves.
He will take great delight in you;
 in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”  

Zephaniah is one of those Old Testament books we don’t read from very often. It’s odd then, to find one of my favorite Scriptures in this tiny book. Every time I read Zephaniah 3:17, I picture the Lord singing for me. His song adds another dimension to His incredible love.

Can you picture that for yourself? God singing for you? It seems like it should be the other way around, we should be singing for our God in meaningful praise and worship.

But He loves us so much that He rejoices over us, with singing!

The next time you feel a little down, recall that God sings for you, He rejoices over you. He loves you more than you can imagine!

Walk In His Light!