I came to work on Tuesday with a detailed to-do list. If everything went perfectly, I would end the day writing something for the e-news. If I got through six of the ten items, it would be a productive day. If I got through five, I would have kept up. If I only got through four, I would be seriously behind.
I got off to a good start, but made the mistake of checking e-mail. (Don’t look at your e-mail if you want to get things done.) I had seven e-mails to which I needed to respond. The wonderful sermon ideas I had written on Monday night were now clearly unacceptable. I remembered something that I was supposed to have done a week ago.
Someone I really wanted to talk to dropped by. I had several conversations with children who were at Vacation Bible Camp. Carol was with the youth, so I was on my own for lunch—which I should have realized before I went home at noon.
On Tuesday afternoon, we have worship planning and staff meetings. I enjoy both, even when they go long. At 6:00, I had gotten through three of the ten items on my to-do list.
I wanted to work late, but I had told Jacque Jones that I would go to the hymn sing at 7:00. I did not have time to sing, but I took my bad attitude with me to the choir room.
Bruce Oelschlager had chosen international hymns. We started with a Spanish tune, “Come Christians, Join to Sing.”
The people in attendance were smart enough to know that if we do not want to sing, then we have lost our way. Music is yoga for people who do not want to wear yoga pants.
We sang a Brazilian hymn, “O Sing to the Lord/Cantad al Senor”—which is Spanish, though they speak Portuguese in Brazil. I briefly considered raising my hand to complain.
We sang a Scottish song with the wonderful line, “The house of faith has many rooms where we have never been.”
People who sing are happier than people who do not. Singing makes it hard to stay frustrated.
We sang “Christ beside Me,” a Gaelic hymn based on the Prayer of St. Patrick from the fifth century.
I was no longer thinking about what I should have gotten done.
We sang the Ghanaian hymn “Jesu, Jesu” and asked God to “fill us with your love.”
Singing reminds us of things that are not on our to-do list.
Some of us will gather in the choir room to sing hymns at 7:00 on August 23 and 30. If you are too busy to sing, you should come. If you are too tired to sing, you should try. If you think you are too important to sing, you need to sing.