“And Jesus answered him, ‘It is written.'” Luke 4:4
I play the accordion. However, I do not consider myself a musician – I’m more of an entertainer. You see, I have a bad habit; I don’t normally play songs the way they are written. I tend to improvise – sometimes even “fake it” for the more difficult parts. I am especially bad at ignoring the dynamics – I play songs the way I’ve heard them played before, or the way I “feel” they ought to go. This works fine when I’m playing by myself, but can be a real challenge for anyone who is trying to play with me. I remember one especially bad rehearsal when it was finally discovered that I was playing a song written in 3/4 time as 4/4!
On another occasion, I was rehearsing a song with our church organist that we were going to play during worship the following Sunday. The song was written by Beethoven, one of the world’s greatest all-time composers. I was playing along, thoroughly enjoying the song, when the organist suddenly stopped.
“If you look at the dynamics, you’ll notice that Beethoven intended for that part to be played softly.”
That was a real “Wow!” Moment for me. Imagine, Beethoven – one of the greatest composers ever – was actually “talking” to me through what he had written centuries before, telling me what he intended for his creation and how I should play it!
The parallel for us as Christians is, sadly, all too obvious.
God has caused the Bible to be written to tell us what God intends for God’s creation and how we should play our part in it. Yet, many of us have never even really read the Bible; we base our faith on what we’ve heard before or what our “feelings” tell us. We march to the beat of a different drummer, dancing through our lives in 4/4 time when God intended for them to be in 3/4!
Fortunately, the solution is simple. We need to read the Bible – actually read it ourselves, not just listen to what others tell us it says – and then practice. Practice, practice, practice. Just as an accordionist can learn to play music the way the composer intended through practice, so too can we Christians live our lives the way the Creator intended by merely reading the music and then practice! There are even web sites that will guide us day-by-day through the entire Bible so that we can read the whole Book in just one year or less.
And, once we’re playing the way “IT IS WRITTEN”, just imagine the beautiful music we can make together with God!
Ken Lillagore [email protected]