It's my concert and I'll sing if I want to.
I was born in a small saw mill town in 1959. At that time the family consisted of Mom, Dad, Grace LaVonne and Margaret Lucille, then me Carolyn something or other (can’t stand my middle name). Five years later mom gave birth to a son named Joseph Kevin and last but not least of us all was Aaron Bruce. Mom said that she and dad always prayed before naming us kids for they wanted God to give us each names that would match our personalities. Now for the rest of the family’s names I’m not sure what the meanings where for them. But my name fits me to a tea. Carolyn (Carol) I love to sing. I remember we would drive 30 miles to church and 30 miles back home. From a young age I would sing my heart out in the back seat of the car. If the music was not playing in the ole 8 tracks you could count on me to bring on the concert. Now as I seen it, I had a captive audience, the family was stuck in the car right beside me. Man was I ready to sing. You have to have all the air you can get if you were going to belt out a song for the whole world to hear so I would position my self; I would take that deep breath open my mouth wide and let out that beautiful noise. Then the band of voices would follow right after me. “Oh no she is singing again” “Mom tell her not to sing” “Carrie be quite” Me, I ignored them and was going to give them that concert rather they liked it or not. I continued to sing, “You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray” now if I came to a part that I did not know the words I would make something up. To me that’s how you can tell a great singer, If you can’t remember the words, just throw something in there. “You make me happy when skies are gray; you’ll never believe this one I just have to say so please take my sunshine away” Hey it fits. Well my audience disagreed with me, Mom would turn around in the seat and say “Carolyn if you don’t know the words to the song, don’t sing it, sing something you know.” Well that just was not right; I was headed into the big world at the age of 8, writing my own songs and of course singing them the way I wanted. I had seen my future all those rides to and from church.
I am 50 now and I still sing that way, don’t know the words, make it up, if they have never heard the song then they won’t know the difference. Many times I find my self standing up in church to sing a solo, as I gear up to take that deep breath, get my stomach full of air open my mouth wide, waiting for the first words of the song to come to memory, and as I stand there nothing comes. I think to my self with that blank look on my face “can they tell I have forgotten the words?” the music shows no sympathy it continues to play. Okay what in the world just happened? I have found that in these times I could once again at the age of 9 break out in tears or just laugh it off and let God cover the flaws.
I was asked to sing at our church one night, they were having a special service for people who had talent or no talent to show what gift God had given them. We had a full house that night over 100 or so people. So I picked my song, practice it, memorized the words and memorized them some more. I knew I was ready. The music started and I began the song. The words were coming to memory, all was going well, I was on to the second verse, started singing the verse, out came the wrong words, “Moses was fight the lions in the lions den, and David was leading the children in the wilderness” Oh my! How in the world was I going to cover that one up. I stopped singing and just started laughing, tears were coming to my eyes, I could not stop laughing. The congregation started laughing with me. Did I finish the song, No, But God was in control. You ask “how?” In my blaze of glory a mother leaned over to her daughter and said, “See there is no need to worry about messing up, even the professionals mess up from time to time.” That night was the daughters first time to do a public performance on the piano. In her nervousness she went up and played that piano perfect. The service was over the mother come up to me and said “Thank you for showing my daughter even the professionals sometimes mess up and that it is okay” she added “that was the best performance besides their daughter that night.
What did I learn from that? I learned that if I would have gotten embarrassed and started crying and running off the stage, because in my flesh I wanted to be perfect in my singing, I could have caused that fear in the teen age girl to rob her of the gift that God had given her. And in her fear of messing up she might not have gotten up that night and played the piano.
So being used of God is not always wonderful and perfect in our eyes and we might not always understand why God does what he does and it’s not for us to understand. It’s our job to be humble before God and be the vessel that he intends on using. And then in the end as we put the puzzle together we can see that God has everything covered.