Singing Through Adversity
In December 2020, 12 brave singers committed to doing a virtual choir production of “HOPE”. Most singers recorded from home in front of green screens, singing their individual parts, video recording their singing and listening to the music simultaneously through their headphones. Our media specialist, Katie Klein, spent countless hours creating our production. Even though we were singing separately, we kept singing-alone but “together.”
As restrictions eased, the choir returned to singing in the sanctuary with special “singing masks” in September 2021. What a thrill it was to sing as a group even though we still wore our masks. We celebrated at our service by singing, “I Choose Love.” Sadly, within a week one of our choir members passed away suddenly. At her family’s request, we kept singing with tears in our eyes once again. We dedicated the song, “Every Time I Think Of You” to her memory.
The word adversity means difficulties or misfortune. After enduring so many obstacles related to singing, we could easily have given up. However, a hymn entitled, “How Can I Keep From Singing” by Robert Lowry played in my head. “My life flows on in endless song, above earth’s lamentation. I hear the clear, though far off hymn that hails a new creation. No storm can shake my inmost calm while to that Rock I’m clinging. Since love is Lord of heaven and earth, how can I keep from singing?”
Nothing was going to silence our choir. Even after all the losses, grief and sadness, the choir was able to perform “Peace” this past Christmas season. While there was masked singing, a sweet spirit flowed through the singers that was from heartfelt joy.
The pure joy of singing to please God and worship him was evident. Singing through adversity gave us the satisfaction of experiencing a relationship with God and each other. The hymn, “How Can I Keep from Singing” closes with this final verse. “The peace of Christ makes fresh my heart, a fountain ever springing!
All things are mine since I am his! How Can I Keep From Singing?” May it be your prayer as a musician to have a “fountain ever springing” from within your heart. Even when facing demanding situations, remember the conditions of the heart will make your song fresh and renewed, especially if the song centers on Christ.
How Can I Keep From Singing? by Robert Lowery
The Face of God by Karen Drucker, Arranged by Mark Hayes Holmes Street Publishing (HSP1013-2) with Flute Obligato
I Choose Love by Mark A. Miller Chorister’s
Guild Publishing (CGA1491)
Every Time I Think of You by Ruth Schram,
Lorenz Publishing (10/4713L-2) with Cello/Flute
Hope by Joel Raney (8831) Peace (9056) by Joel Raney
Our Production of “Peace”