In a few minutes I shall begin getting ready to head to Centerville to play music for a visitation and funeral for a grandmother of a friend, and a great-grandmother for two of my students.
Music, without any doubt, is a powerful, mighty tool. Someone once said that when we make music we are exceptionally close to God, and reign with the angels.
I will play for an hour during the visitation. My folder is full of some of the best old hymns ever written, as well as standard Bill & Gloria Gaither tunes. Nothing brings out memories of my childhood, and especially, my grandparents, than hymns. “Holy, Holy, Holy” was my grandfather’s favorite hymn, and Grandma Donna claimed hers to be, “I Love To Tell The Story.” These hymns generally moisten the eyes a bit.
Since this is for my two students’ great-grandmother, I am taking along, and will play one hymn from my own great-grandmother’s hymnal in honor of my students. I never met the very musically talented Thelma Daugherty Barmes, as she died nearly seven years before I was born. When I play hymns for any kind of service, I always feel as though I am continuing my family’s legacy with generations of church work, and music.
“I love to tell the story, twill be my theme in glory; to tell the old, old story of Jesus and his love.”
Now, some of the current versions change the text to: “I’ll sing one day in glory” replacing “twill be my theme in glory.”
I refuse to change the words, and sing out the lyrics I’ve known all my life. On some things, I will not be budged, and that part of my nature really rises when it comes to old texts in hymns.
Right now, it is raining, seeming to fulfill the old adage, “the angels are weeping.” They may be weeping, but I am sure they are also singing and dancing to celebrate the little lady joining them today.