Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Musical Clarification

I made a comment in my last post about church music and instead of going back and rewording it, I thought I would just write more about it. I don't agree with Gary Chapman, author of The Five Love Languages. I don't think there are 5 languages. I think there are 6, with number 6 being music. Music is my love language. I love to hear Rob sing our song, Forever and Ever, Amen, by Randy Travis in my ear. Music moves me, uplifts me, inspires me, gives me energy, calms me, ministers to me. I think you get the picture!

Music has always been a part of my life. Piano lessons were started in Kindergarten. Saxaphone lessons began a few years after that. I was in children's choir at Penn View where we did a record recording a couple years. I sang in a children's trio. In 8th grade here at HSCA, I was invited by Leroy Adams to be in the high school/college band even though I wasn't technically old enough. Then there was high school choir and ensemble (where most years the choir and ensemble took first place at national competition) and more years in band. My dad comes from a musical family. His sister has been the director of a gospel band in Pennsylvania for many years. All his nephews and a niece play instruments and sing. And now most of THEIR children play. Anyway, you get the picture! Not bragging about anything, just driving home a point. I LOVE MUSIC! I have been to churches where all they sing is hymns. I have been to others where all they sing is contemporary music and others where they have a mix of both. I personally like a mix of both, but if I had to choose between all hymns or all contemporary for church, I would choose hymns. You can turn on any radio station these days and get your fill of upbeat praise and worship. What is much harder to find on the radio is a healthy diet of hymns. I love the message of the old hymns. I also love the more upbeat camp meeting style songs that you don't hear as much these days. I was at work last night and since my "lady" went to bed a little earlier than usual, I was able to read the TV guide and choose what I wanted to watch for a change. At 9:30, the Gaither's were on TBN. I was thrilled! My heart had been heavy all evening with some news that I received right before going to work and I had been praying off and on all evening. I knew that watching the Gaither's sing would be just what I needed. And it was. I guess it was an older one of the Gaither Homecomings and they were singing in an old church in the Carolinas, I believe. All the songs were hymns. I was surprised to find that I knew most of the words to these hymns that I hadn't heard in years. They were songs that I grew up listening to and must have heard hundreds of times. It was like manna from Heaven! I want that for my children. I have vowed to find more CD's with hymns and have them playing frequently at home.

About my comment on loud music in my other post. I don't think that there is anything wrong with instruments being played along with church music, but I think it can get out of hand. When the musicians drown out the voices of those singing praise to God, it's frustrating to me. I guess I don't go to church to hear a concert. I WANT to hear everyone singing together. The more voices, the better. And that's why I so enjoyed the music on Easter Sunday. I know this is just my personal opinion, and there are those who will disagree with me on both sides of this issue. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and I think how you are raised has a strong bearing on how you feel on this subject.

And speaking of this subject, I think I have about wore it out! So, now it's your turn! Tell me what you think!


Mary Ellen said...

I so agree with you! While I love singing hymns and love our kids learning them too, and I think they set the mood for a service - especially on Sunday matter what I'm singing in church, hymns or choruses, I want to hear the singing! I don't need to hear myself sing, although it's frustrating to know you are singing and you can't even hear yourself - but I like to hear my kids, LOVE to hear my husband (he has a good voice) and enjoy hearing voices blended together. Whether it's a piano, piano and organ, an orchestra, band or whatever - whether it's a song leader or a full praise team I hate when they are so loud you can't hear anything else. Isn't that why we have solo's and specials? Congregational singing is about lifting our voices together to praise and worship God, if you can't even hear the voices then what's the point!??!

I like a whole variety of Christian music when it comes to what I listen to, concerts, etc. but in church I think the singing should be worshipful, uplifting and inspirational. I too prefer hymns that move along like they generally do during campmeeting. Great blog Allana.

Sarah said...

I agree with all that you wrote. I grew up loving music. When I feel weighed down, I know that prayer and just the right music can pull me out of the slump. I too prefer hymns. I love hearing a hymn that I haven't heard in years, and the memories that come flooding back with it. I'm often amazed at how I remember the words from years ago, but that's typical for me. I usually remember any song after hearing it once or twice. Hymns are so moving and their words are often full of such power. I enjoy contemporary music as well, but I would never want to live without the hymns.

I love having instruments accompany the music in worship services, but definitely not when they drown out the voices. I even enjoy a good song sung without the instruments. The perfect blend of voices is an instrument in itself.


David & April said...

Thanks for your comments! We didn't go with the Amish, although similar in style, is very beautiful, but it is also expensive. We tryed to see if the table & chairs were solid and sturdy and they were so the cost difference between the two were very different!! Your family picture at the top is beautiful! You have a good lookin family!! I enjoy getting comments! I also agree about the music, I couldn't live without it!!! Have a good rest of the week!!