If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. (1 Cor. 13:1)
My son Andy played French horn at a district band concert years ago. The kids played songs that grew in complexity with each age group that played. Then it was time for the grand finale.
The song began strong. But somewhere in the middle a few young musicians managed to speed ahead of the rest. Some stayed with the director. Still others, confused, slowed down as they cast about, trying to find their place in the score. One enormous cacophony resulted.
With a furrowed brow, the band director held up both hands and brought the song to a sudden halt. A couple of trumpets continued to play, the last to catch the signal. Nervous laughter followed. Another moment of silence fell over the room. What would the director say to the musicians about the chaos?
“FROM 52!” the band director announced.
The children immediately found measure 52 in their scores and looked up. As the director’s baton came down, the young musicians began to play together at that place in their sheet music. Watching the director and listening to one another this time, the performers finished the song as one.
Applause from the audience was at first tentative, then quickly grew and filled the room. They’d done it! The performers had finished together!
There are times of disunity in our relationships when we fall out of sync with each other. Some of us feel at odds with those beside us. Though playing from the same score, a dissonance is produced by variances in interpretation and tempo. What was once melodious harmony is now just plain noise. Have you had a resounding gong or clanging cymbal experience lately?
But at times of discord, we get a chance to look to God, our divine Conductor. We stop. We look up. We see God redirect. He is most certainly beaming, because no matter how badly we’ve botched it, we are looking to Him and are choosing to follow His lead in getting back in sync with Him and with one another.
So what if we managed to get ahead of everyone and messed up our tempo, or lost focus and fell behind? So what if we blew it and hit a note that was in the wrong key?
Let’s forget all the chaos and pick it up from here.