One of my favorite parts of the day is when our family gathers in our music room and we practice our current family songs. Every song we play is practiced in two different ways. One way is to pick the parts in the song that have problems and work them out until they can be played without difficulty. The second way we work on a song is to play the entire song from beginning to end without stopping. If one of the players messes up, they have to keep going because in a live performance there are no restarts! Some days it is lighthearted and fun, while other days it is a little more challenging and difficult.
One day we were practicing a song for an upcoming performance. Everyone knew the song pretty well, so we were playing it straight through. However, when they were almost to the end, three out of the four band members somehow had trouble. My little cello player was the only one who kept the song going. Within a few notes the pianist and mandolin player were right back on track. The drummer took a little longer to find the beat, but he finally got the rhythm going again. The band finished the song with a laugh trying to figure out what went wrong. I quickly praised my cellist for not stopping. If it weren’t for him the others would not have found their place in the song, and they certainly would not have finished the song together. My cello player didn’t do anything special, heroic, or amazing. All he did was to keep the song going. He wasn’t distracted by the chaos around him, and he simply did what he was supposed to do.
Sometimes staying on course is a challenge.
However, there is a beautiful picture of God at work in those who finish their course strongly despite what happens around them. You see it in the couple who has been married 50 years and still looks at each other with love in their eyes. It’s in the widow at church that faithfully teaches Sunday School every week. You also find it in: the missionary who dedicates their life to a group of people even though they never see one life changed; the mom who faithfully prays for her child who has made poor choices and wandered away from the faith; the single mom who never imagined herself playing the role of both mom and dad but gives everything she has to make a good life for her children; the mom of a child who has disabilities, who wears a smile, but is constantly reminded of how her child is different from others his or her age.
As I think through my own life, I can think of an example of each of these heroes who kept the beat going. They never knew I was watching, and sometimes I didn’t realize it either. Through their steadiness, I am also encouraged to keep going when the chaos of life sets in. They exemplify one of the beautiful qualities that is all too rare in our day and time – faithfulness.
I want to encourage you today to keep going. Keep moving forward even when things are hard and all you see is chaos.
Keep moving forward when you feel like giving up.
Keep looking beyond this life and it’s empty rewards towards the things that are eternal. Keep holding onto Jesus whose love is beyond our ability to comprehend and whose peace is far greater than any peace known to man. He alone is the one who keeps you and upholds you. You never know – you may be the one God uses to help someone else finish their song well.