As I opened the case for the first time in months, the familiar sounds got me… the buckles flipping open on the hard shell, the creak in the hinges as I pushed away the velvety top so I could pick up that beautiful instrument that has been hidden away too long. The black sound hole cover was still stuck on, with black streaks leading from where my pick used to hit the rubber. I held my favorite pick in my hand, the red one that I chewed up so much, you can see indentions on each side. It’s the pick I haven’t used since the days when I was playing… a LOT.
I put the Taylor in my lap, strummed it once to hear just how out-of-tune it had become… then I pulled out the tuner. I took it all in, the familiar smell and sounds, the feel of the wood. After tuning, I started to play the song that always seems to come to my fingers first thing… Your love never fails, it never gives up, it never runs out on me. There was an amazing sound of rawness, as the guitar has been silent for months. It was, well, not the smoothest sound to ever come out. This from a combination of lack of practice and the aching of my fingertips, callouses all but gone. A reminder of what happens when we drift away from something we love so much.
Settling in a little more, I found the chords to the new song that’s on my heart so much lately, “How Can It Be” by Lauren Daigle. It’s mostly a piano song, but in my opinion any song can be arranged for acoustic guitar. So I sat and strummed this beautiful soul-stirring song, and I sang it out to the top of my rough, non-warmed-up, needs-some-vocal-practice voice… until my throat hurt so much that I just had to stop.
Though I fall, You can make me new
From this death I will rise with You
Oh the grace reaching out for me
How can it be? How can it be?
And I was thankful again for the gift of music. The gift to be able to pick up an instrument and use it for the glory of God. Thankful that the art is starting to come out again. The foundation is getting stronger, My Top Three becoming more consistent. And today, it hit me… There is actually a fourth. Music. Where time with the Lord is my strength, writing is my completeness, and running is my freedom… Music is my fuel. When the other three are stable and strong, music is how the soul God created me to be comes out. It is the beautiful gift that I am more grateful for than ever before. But without a solid foundation, the music coming out of me is just… about me.
And today, my heart felt how much I’ve missed the gift, the privilege of being able to play and sing for God’s glory. For only His glory. And my heart and soul give thanks for the art that is coming back.
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