Sunday, August 12, 2012

Sing Your Sorrows Away



Vacation Bible School was in full swing last week at our church. We had almost sixty children participating, along with many youth and adult leaders. Through crafts, singing, Bible stores, games and even snack time, the children learned more about Jesus and how God works in their lives.


This year's theme helped the children learn that God can help them with anything they might need: wisdom, strength, comfort, hope or just the right words to say. They learned that they are forever safe in God's arms, and that they can always trust God for help whenever they need it. 

It has been my special privilege to be the song leader for our VBS during the last three years. I lead the children in singing songs that help teach the Bible verse for the day, including active motions which require lots of energy. 

I share my joy and love of our Lord with the children through my singing, and I draw upon their energy and enthusiasm to keep me going. I've found that this week can be rather exhausting, but very gratifying!

It brings me such joy to see their sweet smiles. Their faces light up as they sing, and I see innocence in their eyes and the promise of all their tomorrows. Sometimes I almost lose my place in the song as I look out at their sweet faces. There is such honesty in their sweet demeanor, and I am honored to be leading them.

Sometime later they might recognize me in the parking lot or the hallway at church, and I feel a connection with them that will hopefully last for a lifetime. When the children see me in the in church leading the singing during worship or singing with the choir, they remember me from our fun times during VBS, and I think it may help them to feel a connection to the grown-up service and a sense of belonging. 

The songs we sing are joyful and full of energy, and they offer a lesson to me, too. I may be having a difficult day, and feel weary as I get up in front of the group; but then the words of the song reach my own heart and I remember that God is with me, too, and will help me to get through any struggles that I face. Soon my worries are forgotten as I sing to those smiling little faces and share the joy I know through God's love.


Joy through living, and especially through singing, is what keeps me going through challenging times. And no matter what the difficult days bring, if I can remember just to sing, my mood lifts immediately and my focus is turned elsewhere.

It isn’t always easy to do. If I am feeling particularly blue, singing is not the first thing I think of to help. But when I remember what a healing balm singing is to my soul, I make the choice to try to sing. 

Most often, I will sing a familiar hymn or contemporary Christian song. At first, I think it can be almost mechanical, but soon the lyrics guide my thoughts right to where they need to be: with God. His healing grace carries me through my difficult days, and His love touches my heart with His mercy.

Today the children sang in worship, and shared two of their fun VBS songs. At the end, the entire congregation joined them in singing the last verse of Kum ba yah. It was a really special moment for everyone.

This has been a wonderful week with the children, full of joys; and also a difficult and challenging week as I endured some personal sorrows, but music has carried me through, along with the prayers of my sweet sisters and brothers in Christ. Sharing music during worship today continued to be the healing balm I needed, and many others in the congregation as well.

We sang Laura Story's "Blessings" during worship today, and as people's hearts heard the words, there were a few tears shed. Tears are good. They are healing, too.

I will leave you with a song by Addison Road called "Hope Now" which always reminds me that God is my help; and no matter the storm, I need only to turn my thoughts - and my song - to Him.

Blessings to you all, my friends.




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