Monday, April 5, 2010

Sing to the Lord

This past Friday (Good Friday) I had to attend service by myself (my husband had work). My son and I were packed into a hot church like sardines. There were people practically touching my shoulders on each side of me and full pews both in front and behind me. But that's a good thing at church, and this was going to be a good service. As the music began I noticed a small female voice behind me. The voice came from directly behind me so I couldn't determine the age of or looks of this woman. All I could do was hear her singing...and it was the WORST singing I had ever heard in my life. Every pitch, every tone was off. Every time a note changed, her voice cracked, shook and squealed. But at least she was singing quietly, as if she didn't know the song very well, so I tried to ignore it.

As service went on, the songs became more familiar to this women. With the familiarity came an increase in the volume of her singing. I'm not a great singer myself, I'm no choir director. But I do have ears, and all you would need is ears to know that this was some BAD singing. I kept thinking to myself, "can this woman not hear what she sounds like? She must be deaf or something, because no one in their right mind would sing this loud and this badly in front of so many people." I tried to distract myself by thinking of how pleasing this woman must be to Christ, singing her heart out. No matter how bad it sounded to my ears, it was probably very pleasing to his. During the communion hymn, a familiar one to all, this woman belted out her voice as loud as she could. Squealing and screeching above everyone else's.

I couldn't help it; I had to turn around and look. And what did I find behind me? Not a little old lady with permed hair and glasses, but a young 13 year old pubescent boy who's voice was obviously changing. The boy didn't even glance up from his hymnal as I smiled looking at him. He was stuck in his own little world, just him, his music and God. How pleasing this must have been to our Lord, and how funny it was to me. Any woman with sons, or anyone who grew up with brothers could probably recognize that voice from a million miles away. But I grew up with two sisters, a mother and a father who's voice changed long before I knew him. I just hope that one day my son is as comfortable with himself and with the Lord that he has the courage to sing out with all his heart...even if it's not so pleasing to the ear.


  1. I didn't see that coming. How sweet. But I'd have freaked if I was 38 weeks pregnant and stuffed so tightly into any building on any day.

  2. Really funny and poignant! I love to hear people "belting it out" in church. I KNOW if you turned around to look it was bad :). By the way, you have a beautiful voice and I miss hearing it so much in mass!

  3. This reminded me of the one singer at Holy Cross when we were little, who sung the psalms SO off key! I also was not anticipating the surprise ending to the story!