Monday, November 9, 2015

The Song You Are Teaching Me

Every week, on Sunday morning, I lead two worship services.  And every week, on Wednesday morning, I also lead a worship service -- for about 100 pre-school students, who line up and walk over from the building next door.

I'll admit, when I first considered this responsibility, I paused.  I was excited to be interacting with the children, but I thought I could only remember one children's song, "Jesus Loves Me."  What was I going to do with 100 pre-school students?

A little later, I remembered that I knew a couple of other children's songs.  We could also sing, "This LIttle Light of Mine" and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands."  And I realized that we could pray.  We pray together every week.  And we tell Bible stories, and sometimes we try to acts things out, although that is, frankly, a work in progress.

One night, I was wishing I knew or remembered a few more children's songs, and I googled a verse I thought I had heard the children singing.  I listened to it a couple of times, determined to add it to my repertoire.

On Wednesday we tried it.  I told them I had heard this song, and I hoped they would help me learn it.  As soon as I started to sing, they sang out loudly -- and they knew hand motions, too.

So now, when we sing it, I refer to it as "The Song You are Teaching Me."  I am getting pretty good at it now, although I sometimes still mess up the hand motions.  I can't help wondering if there are a couple more songs that they could teach me, songs that they know, but I don't, songs that aren't "Jesus Loves Me" or "Deep and Wide" or "I've Got Peace Like a River."  I have discovered that I know more songs than I thought I did, but they probably know some songs that I don't know.

It's true in more ways than one, I suppose.  I stand up in church on Sunday, and I lead the singing, and I think that is what I am called to do.  I am the leader.  I am called to lead the singing, and to teach some new songs, too.  I am called to help my congregation sing new songs and see new possibilities, and discover what God is doing among us and in us.   That's what I think, most of the time.

But then, for a moment, I think of the children, and I wonder -- what is the new song they are teaching me?  They know songs that I have never heard of, or learned.

Every week, on Sunday morning, and also during the week, I am now training my ears to listen:  for a new song, for possibilities, for the things I never knew, for melodies and harmonies.  Every week, I am asking the question, "What is the song they are teaching me?"

I am convinced that is why God called me here.  To learn a new song.

With hand motions.

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