Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Sixth Means of Taking In The Scripture

My mother felt that band was a good activity for my bother, sister and I. My brother and sister played trumpet and I played saxophone. I really had below average ability in music. I did not really have a talent for it, never the less, I was encouraged to take up the instrument of my choice. Eventually I did learn to read music and could sight read a new piece fairly well. During my junior high years I took up singing in the church choir. I did not really match pitch well and had trouble carrying a tune. But with the patient work of our choir director and standing next to some really good bass singers at church camp. Eventually I could sing well in a four part harmony choir. I joined jazz band, sitting last chair. I was in marching band, had some good band trips to St. Louis, Springfield, Flat River, Chicago, and Fulton. I think Chicago was our only out of state trip. By sticking to it, I eventually gained some music competency. My senior year in high school I had gone from below average to a fairly good musician.

My music experience was one where I was one of the stronger musicians because I read music well. I could sight read a piece of music and read the bass line or the melody. Somehow it has all changed for me. The music situations that I have contact with are people who play by ear or people play praise music from chords. My years of playing saxophone have little to no use since I can't play by ear. Even if I did, I don't transpose either. In a sense all my musical competencies no longer have value. I would like to do more, but I just don't have much opportunity to exercise my gifts any more. I would like to get back in to music. I'm just not sure how.

What really compels me to get back into music is that music is such a big part of scriptural worship. It is not just another option. Music is the Pentateuch, Old Testament Histories, Psalms, Prophets. Music is in the Gospels, the Letters, and Revelation. The Navigators teach that there are five ways to take in scripture: reading, listening, studying, memorizing and meditation. I believe there is another way to experience the scriptures and that is through music. How do I put my theology into practice?

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