Help outfit Michael, Sarah, and John

Monday, August 18, 2014

Singing opportunity

One of the things that has really excited me about my new ward here is that there are several musicians in the ward. As in, they have degrees in music and play instruments as their profession. Yeah, the real deal. I am looking forward to hearing them perform and enjoying their talents. Initially, I was worried that with all the talent in the ward that there wouldn't be any room for me - sounds selfish, right? But then I spoke with someone and they were telling me that they were recently hoping that a professional singer would move into the ward. This caused me to feel very nervous - which I know wasn't their intention.

As you know, I am NOT a professional singer. I have had about 3 years of voice lessons total and do not have a degree in music. I was asked to sing a solo in church and I began practicing. It wasn't just any solo, but O DIVINE REDEEMER. This piece is beautiful; one of my husband's favorites. But it is also a WORKOUT for me. If my voice isn't in tip-top shape, then it doesn't sound good. And I haven't been warming up and singing classical music for a few months, so when I practiced the song...it left much to be desired. I began practicing twice a day and praying for help. By the time Sunday rolled around, I was so incredibly anxious. I was worried about what the professional musicians would think - even though that shouldn't matter. When the time came to sing, my voice was ready and I was able to sing with my whole soul, feeling the Holy Ghost as my companion. I truly felt as though God had magnified my musical ability. It was glorious and wonderful.

I am more and more thankful that when God was passing out the talents, that music was passed to me. I have a strong desire to praise my Father in Heaven through music and I feel the Holy Ghost more strongly in music than in any other way. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the driving force in my life and my testimony grows every time I sing in church. Because I was practicing this piece over and over, I reflected more upon the words and I felt like I understood the atonement of Jesus Christ better. I am grateful I was asked to sing.

Ah! Turn me not away,
Receive me tho' unworthy;
Hear Thou my cry,
Behold, Lord, my distress!
Answer me from thy throne
Haste Thee, Lord to mine aid,
Thy pity shew in my deep anguish!
Let not the sword of vengeance smite me,
Though righteous thine anger,
O Lord! Shield me in danger, O regard me!
On Thee, Lord, alone will I call.
O Divine Redeemer!
I pray Thee, grant me pardon,
and remember not, remember not my sins!
Forgive me, O Divine Redeemer!
Night gathers round my soul;
Fearful, I cry to Thee;
Come to mine aid, O Lord!
Haste Thee, Lord, haste to help me!
Hear my cry! Save me Lord in Thy mercy;
Come and save me O Lord
Save, in the day of retribution,
From Death shield Thou me, O my God!
O Divine Redeemer, have mercy!
Help me, my Saviour!

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