So…What’s your song?

At the beginning of 2013, I was still working in that call center that I still will not name…I remember waking up with a sore throat but knowing I would just go to work.  I figured, I felt fine…just had a sore throat.  Well, I hopped on the phone like always and the more I talked, the more I realized, I was losing my voice.  Every person that said something on the phone said, “oh my goodness, you sound horrible!”  I remember thinking, “but I feel fine.”  Finally, I decided to tell my supervisor that I was having a problem.  She said, “Well, I can understand you.”  Aggravated, I pressed on.  Like I said, my throat was sore but aside from that I felt fine.  So I kept water near me and throat lozenges were my breakfast and lunch that day.  About an hour after I talked to my supervisor, my manager called me and ordered me off the phone.  I went to the urgent care…strep test came back negative…just a sore throat.  Well the next day, my voice was completely gone.  I couldn’t even whisper!

I waited a few days and went back to the doctor because the issue hadn’t resolved itself.  The doc ordered me 2 weeks of voice rest.  Two weeks turned into eight!  Eight weeks, I was supposed to not talk or talk as little as possible.  Considering I sang every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday at church and worked 8 hours a day on the telephone, I was seeing some serious problems!  I wasn’t mad about not talking…I was mad that I wasn’t going to be able to sing!  Me.  The one who wakes up with a song every morning was not going to be able to sing!  I couldn’t believe it.

Well, eight weeks later, I was better, not good as new as allergy season was upon us at that point…just better.  Something strange happened…I went to choir practice and something irritated me.  I mean I was downright angry!  Then when it was time to sing, either Sunday or Thursday and I’d be either mad or overwhelmed with sadness.  This went on for months and I never told anyone for real because I didn’t know how to express it.  We would sing songs and I would think about the words and it meant nothing to me.  One night, our choir director admonished us to encourage the people and reminded us that we have to believe what we’re singing.

That was the moment I realized my problem.  I didn’t believe what I was singing.  We were singing a song called Higher by William Murphy.  My throat closed up.  I couldn’t sing it because I didn’t believe.  There’s a part at the end that says, “I got my joy back” and it dawned on me that I didn’t have any joy.  It was September already and I had gone the whole year with no joy!

The next morning I woke up very early and couldn’t get back to sleep.  I lay there listening and heard absolutely nothing.  The root of my problem was discovered! I had not been waking up with a song!  How could that have happened I wondered over and over again.  I tried and tried and tried but I could not hear my heart’s song.  The music was gone!  I had lost my physical voice which lead to a loss of my spiritual voice. When I tell you that was the worst feeling in the world! It’s undescribable. I cried many days and nights with no reason I could come to. My friend Nicole prayed with and for me. I literally felt my spirit and flesh wrestling.

Before long, I had it back. It was only through prayer and seeking God that it was restored. So on the cusp of the new year I had my song again.

Now I’m more apt to listen for it. If I don’t hear it I immediately pray and wait for it. When my spiritual ears are opened I get my song and proceed with my day. Back in October or November, our choir began to sing a song written by our fabulous lead guitar player, Quintrell Bruno, called Never Be the Same Again. I was at a low point and close to losing my song again.  The lyrics are just amazing. The melody is haunting but it stayed with me.  I’ve listed the lyrics below but the part I needed…The part I always hear throughout my day…goes..:”don’t you know how much God loves you. Don’t you know how much he cares?” That’s the part I always need to hear. It was introduced to me late in the year but I’d heard it more in my spirit in the last quarter of 2015 than any other song all year long. It’s such a healing song. It’s the balm for my wounded soul. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to experience it.  Read the lyrics here and see what I’m talking about.

This same thing with losing my song happened to me again at the end of 2016.  This time though, I was in a place where it was all black.  I couldn’t sing.  Standing in the choir stand, Watch Night, I know my face told a story that words couldn’t.  I couldn’t even open my mouth to sing and I was scheduled to sing for two services on Sunday morning! I didn’t know it but I was at the door of my breakthrough!  One of my choir sisters prayed for me and I didn’t even know it.  All I knew was that between Saturday night and Sunday morning, a wonderful change came over me.  I had my song back and thankfully, I have come to a place of freedom and I will never be bound again.  I don’t have to wrestle with the darkness for that reason again.

So…what’s your song? Have you listened? Listen to your heart. It’s there.

Until next time,

 

Hakuna Matata

So…a little bit about me — Part 5

So…a little bit about me — Part 5

So…by now, you should know the “real” me.  This is the final entry about me.  The last thing you should know is that in addition to reading and writing, I love to sing.  Now, before you start asking for my demo, I’m not THAT kind of singer.  I sing because it makes me happy.  I don’t care who knows!  I just like to sing.

Each morning, I wake up with a song in my heart.  Sometimes it’s a song I’ve heard recently.  Sometimes it’s a song I haven’t heard in ages.  Sometimes, it’s even a song I have never heard in my life in which case, I just hum it until it sounds like something I know or another song pops into my head.  If a song has a good beat, a decent melody, yep, I’m going to like it, move to it and sing to it (even when I don’t know the words)!

Now, because I like to sing, I demonstrate the love for the ear God gave me by singing in the choir at my church.  Now, while I am not Mariah Carey or someone like that, I will say that I can carry a tune.  I prefer to sing background though.  I like being taught a part and mastering it or listening to a song and hearing the part that I am to sing.  I sing the part that I hear or am taught.  When in doubt, I just sing an octave above the tenor part!

One time, I had the nerve to volunteer to sing the lead on a song.  Encourage Yourself by Donald Lawrence.  All because Ms. Rutha asked…”would you like to try it?”  Had she said, “Do you want to lead it?”, my answer would have been a resounding NO!  That particular day, I had just finished fussing at my students for giving up on something they had never tried.  All day I preached try! Try! TRY!  It was like God said to me, “Okay, try.”  I couldn’t say no right?  So, I had to TRY because I’d never done it before.    So, scared to death, I lead my first song the 4th Sunday of that October.  My mom called my sister and I looked up that Sunday morning and saw her sitting in the congregation.  I was completely mortified.

Well, after the service, I had many well wishers saying what a good job I’d done.  I laughed inside and thought, “yeah, that’s because the anointing fell and blessed y’all’s ears to not hear the complete and utter mess that I heard!”  Anyway, I do alright.  I have done a few other ones but I’ve learned NOT to volunteer for it!  If I do lead one, it’s because the director has lost his or her mind and somehow said they hear me singing it.  Umm…alright.  I’ll let that slide.

My most embarrassing moments all involve me singing.  Not in church on the microphone as a solo or in the background as a choir member.  No.  That would be tooooooooo easy!  You’d think I might be embarrassed when I can’t sit in a chair because it has arms and my hips are too wide.  Or maybe if I have to turn sideways to go through an opening.  Nope!  Those things don’t get me.  I am not ashamed to ask for a chair without arms and turning sideways to go through a door is no different than a tall person ducking to go through a door in my book.

So, what’s this embarrassing moment you ask?  Well, because I’m such a music lover and I love to sing, I have a habit of listening to music with ear buds/headphones or whatever on.  So…when “my song” (whatever that may be at the time) comes on, I am usually compelled to sing it!  Sometimes though, I FORGET where I am or what I should be doing and end up singing.  Now, I try to keep it low, going so far as to take one of the ear buds out so that I can monitor my volume.  Unfortunately, sometimes I forget to do that and just sing to my heart’s content!  I absolutely LOVE the way I feel when I sing.  BUT, sometimes other people can not appreciate the special *ahem* blend of tones from my voice.  I think it’s just because they can’t hear the music or don’t know the song…(I like some off the wall stuff).  So, needless to say, I found myself at work some years ago with my headphones on, listening to a song by Trin-i-tee 5:7 called Lord.  It’s to the tune of Love by Musiq Soulchild.  Yeah, so….umm…the person in the cubicle next to me had been tapping on the wall for some time trying to tell me that I was too loud because the customer that she was on the phone with could hear me.  I missed it.  It wasn’t until I received a pop up from an email from that coworker that read.  “YOU’RE SINGING TOO LOUD!  WHAT SONG IS THAT ANYWAY?”  I took off my headphones, just in time for my supervisor to walk around the corner.  She asked, “are you training for another career?”  Thankfully she was a good sport and burst into laughter.  I believe I was the one who started the office policy to allow us to listen to soft music WITHOUT earphones.  Now, I’m careful to only listen to my music with one ear plugged or covered.  There’s no point in keeping them both because I am GOING to sing!

So, the next time you’re out and about and you see a lady popping her head to a song you can’t hear, don’t laugh.  Walk up to her and dance with her.  I guarantee she’s pretty darn happy!

Until the next time,

Hakuna Matata