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  • Writer's pictureDeena

If it ain't baroque don't fix it

I won my 6th grade talent competition lip-synching to Amy Grant's "Sing your Praise to the Lord," on a record borrowed from my sweet Nazarene friend Tara's parents.

Hi friends.

Happy Saturday.

I knew that would raise just a few of your eyebrows out there in the blogosphere.

It's true.

The song begins with a beautifully orchestrated classical introduction which fit perfectly with the new ballet moves I had just learned in ballet class and was obviously dying to try-out in my public school classroom.

Because this was most likely the only talent competition I would ever enter let alone win, this moment in time has made a definitive mark on my memory.

I can hear the intro for this song and immediately see my little disheveled self waiting in the wings for my "shot."

I remember the record player on the cart the music lady always wheeled to class when it was time for music, filled with tambourines, wooden-handled gadgets with little bells attached to the sides, bongo drums and of course flutophones.

I remember the class looking at me spinning around with ballerina-elongated arms, "jeté-ing" from side to side like I was half-crazy until the beat dropped and the words began.

I can see in my mind's eye my tiny friend Tara smiling at me, giving me the confidence to keep going and I can remember winning that whole crowd over to a song about the Lord.

I'm not entirely sure what David dancing before the Lord looked like in 2 Samuel, but I bet I could've given him a run for his money.

I was young and Christian music about a God who loved me was so new and wonderfully special to me.

I see a me living her best life feeling like she was giving the Lord a real shout-out to kids who really could care less about a Creator and Savior of mankind.

The sheer sincerity in my 6th grade heart - the willingness to make a spectacle of myself to my peers to just open a door to eternal things -

Makes this 46 3/4 year-old heart smile.

I woke up that day and gave God my absolute best and have 6th grade talent show bragging rights to prove it.

I said, "God, I'm here with this little ballet dance for you, if you can use it.." and he said, "I can."

That's an amazing God.

Not just because my song choice was a bit devoid of any Biblical depth,

And not just because I was a teeny little thing in teeny little jeans with killer ballet moves.

God is amazing because he meets us in the middle of wherever we are and want him to join us.

Fast forward to a gifted concert with a gifted group of individuals that specialize in baroque music.

I knew when the Artistic director came out with flaming red hair half-up in a banana clip I was right where I should be.

I am fully embracing the 90's clothing come back because long and flowy is my jam, and banana clips made us all look like we had high school facelifts so for suresies I'm "game" in this stage of life.

My husband and I chuckled that we were the youngest in the auditorium and took our seats to enjoy a delightful rendition of Bach's Easter Oratorio.

I realized I was not properly prepared for my first experience with a "countertenor" when, while I was searching to find my place in the program the dear husband leans over and whispers I guess just for general information's sake, "THAT is NOT a woman...."

My version of a "countertenor" is someone I guess who does a whole, "One and a two and a three and a" kinda pick-up thing...

This ideal MAY have been formed with the previous stated record album.

Though I was not ready for this fella, I WAS ready for flutophones.

Yes, this baroque group uses flutophones and they are awesomesauce.

I could have secured my kids' college tuitions if I had only taken the music lady a little more seriously in grade school.

Well you live and learn, don't ya?

The first chair vilonist had high-water pants but even that couldn't distract me from the words being sung with all their might.

It was in German and it was lovely.

Words of hope and freedom from fear found in the resurrected Christ.

I found myself looking around silently wondering how much it delighted the Lord that a packed house was hearing how wonderful new life in him truly is.

Yes, it wasn't english, but the program gave the interested listener all the proof that they needed to understand a love without limits.

"Rejoice, you hearts,

Run away, you sorrows,

the saviour lives and rules in you.

You can chase away the mourning ,

the fear, the anxious trembling,

the saviour refreshes his spiritual kingdom.

Let a song of thanks resound to the highest,

for his pity and everlasting faithfulness.

Jesus appears to give us peace,

Jesus calls us to live with him,

every day his compassion is made new."

Every day we live with an abundance of compassion that meets us in the middle of dinner prep, in the middle of laundry, in the middle of a mess we made with our own chubby hands,

And sees us trying our best.

He sees our best that might not look quite right in two or twenty two years' time, and is just glad that we are inviting him into a space that needs him.

Maybe deep down I'm still that 6th grader, but I believe that the more I unlearn and learn about who God really is, the more I see a smile in the middle of a pathetically sincere flutophone solo.

I don't have an award to boast about, but I do have Zephaniah 3:17 - "The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.”

Call me crazy but I imagine this song involves a flutophone.

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