"More Than Music"
I find it a bit of a dilemma, as enrobed in a blessing.
I wandered into a music store recently, proceeding to make the mistake experienced by all guitar players at some point in their playing history. I picked up a guitar, played one chord, and was completely blown away by the sound and feel of the instrument. Known as a GS Mini Taylor, it nevertheless sounded like a very large, very resonate, and very beautiful ensemble of wood and steel. The more I played the guitar, the more I loved the sound. To top it off, as a slightly smaller instrument, it frets and plays like a dream. The price is also more than reasonable considering the guitar's quality, so much so that the salesman told me I could simply trade in my current guitar, a ten year old Taylor 310 CE, for an even swap. Thus comprises the blessing, a great guitar for no cost at all.
Here enters the dilemma. I love my current Taylor guitar. I mean, I LOVE my guitar. Frances bought it for me in 2005 as a wonderful gift. It sounds beautiful and plays nicely (although not as easily as the MiniTaylor mentioned above). Most of all, the 310 and I have a blessed history together. My friend and I have made music together in nearly 4,000 services in the last decade. I've written dozens of songs with it, and have never had a moment's problem with the guitar in all these years. The 310 travels well, it stays in tune, and when I pick it up and play it, something more than music results in my heart and mind.
So what do I do? There's really no question or dilemma regarding the matter. I will be faithful to my friend. I will keep my 310. There is no way I could say farewell to one who has been so loyal to me, and who remains so until this day. I understand, of course, that a guitar is an inanimate object that possesses no heart, mind, spirit, or soul. Indeed, referring to the 310 as a "friend" may involve silliness on my part. It feels like a friend, however, and I am enough of a romantic to dismiss any notion of trading the 310 for any other guitar. Yes, I will be faithful to my friend.
All this reminds me, of course, that "there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24). The faithfulness of my guitar elicits desire in me to respond in kind. This reflects the truth that loyalty to our "closer than a brother" God always proceeds as the fruit of His loyalty to us. The writer of Hebrews profoundly declares such truth - "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering, for He is faithful that promised" (Hebrews 10:23). We "hold fast" based upon "He is faithful." Moreover, the same writer calls us to "consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds" (Hebrews 12:3). Considering our Lord's faithfulness motivates and empowers our own faithfulness. Indeed, the more we "grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ," the more we experience the blessed truth that "God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work" (II Peter 3:18; II Corinthians 9:8).
The faithfulness of my friend, the 310, sings to me of my dearest and best friend, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus. Yet again, the 310 blesses me with more than music as it reflects the Light from above that illuminates, encourages, and challenges us to walk in trustworthiness to God through the power of His trustworthiness to us. How could I bid farewell to such a devoted and loyal companion? I can't. I won't.
"Beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."
(II Corinthians 3:18)
Weekly Memory Verse
The Lord will give strength unto His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace."