And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men….
Finding a “niche” in life seems a daunting task. It’s always amazing to me to see an artist’s work, hear the voice of a professional singer, or witness the lightening fast fingers of a concert pianist. My parents gave me every opportunity to find a niche. I wasn’t ever a “natural” at anything. I participated in gymnastics but never made cheerleader. I took twirling lessons but had minimal success. Mom put me in weekly piano lessons from 2nd-8th grade. I performed concerts and even at Bach festivals, but I lacked practice ethics, and when I quit taking lessons, I lost my ability to play. I tried basketball, track, tennis, and golf, but athleticism failed me, too.
I remember my Grannie being especially upset upon my quitting piano. When she found out I was marrying a preacher, she proclaimed, “Well, at least you can sing.” Thankfully my mom also encouraged my singing when I was young. Aside from continuously singing along with every song playing in the car or on my Walkman, my sister and I regularly sang specials at church.
I know Grannie’s heart longed for me to accompany the music in church. And, not only Grannie, but apparently everyone expected the preacher’s wife to play the piano. I often felt like a disappointment within the church circles.
As a young bride, we traveled on the evangelistic field quite often. Some of the churches in which we ministered had no music. Church folks would look to me, and I would unfortunately break the news that I could not play the piano.
There used to be a skit on late night TV called Lowered Expectations. So many times, I felt as if I could star on that skit. Everywhere I looked I faced unmet expectations.
My new husband played the bass guitar and drums. My mother-in-law and sister-in-law played the organ and piano, by ear!! My brother-in-law played the saxophone, which was my instrument throughout band in high school & college, yet again by ear!! My father-in-law was the church pastor, and my husband had relatives pastoring other churches across town. I married into a musical, ministerial, talented family. What did I possess that I could possibly offer?
More next week…..