**You can't press the play button above, it is a screen shot. :-(
“…be filled with the Spirit, as you sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, singing and making melody to the Lord in your hearts, giving thanks to God at all times and for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
It was an absolute joy to be watching the church service and then see the First Baptist Choir pop up! To see faces I haven’t seen in two months and to hear the Spirit-filled and harmonious voices that I have come to love made my Sunday morning. I have found that music lifts my soul. I’ve always leaned this way but during theses times of social distancing, music is something that can come close and soothe my soul.
I am on an email list for The Crossing. The Crossing, as described on their website, is “a professional chamber choir conducted by Donald Nally and dedicated to new music. It is committed to working with creative teams to make and record new, substantial works for choir that explore and expand ways of writing for choir, singing in choir, and listening to music for choir. Many of its nearly ninety commissioned premieres address social, environmental, and political issues.”
This is the choir that Lois and John Dinsmore’s son, Jeff, was a founder of. Almost six years ago Lois and John invited me and Sandy to hear The Crossing sing at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in the Perelman Building. Here the choir sang a piece that moved forwards and backwards. Literally, the song was sung and the choir moved forward as the notes and words were sung in a left to right reading direction. Then the notes and words were sung backwards and the choir moved backwards. There was a beauty and mystery in this for me. How could some and all of the choir be singing and moving forward and others moving and singing backwards and sound like a beautiful creation that deeply touched my soul? I had never heard anything like this, and have never been so deeply moved by a choral piece.
Just about every day I receive an email from The Crossing. Some days I hear pieces that lift me from the midst of living in a pandemic to a place where joy and rejoicing reign. Some days I encounter a piece that leaves me scratching my head and thinking, “Hmmm, maybe that didn’t resonate with me because one of my favorite group singing times is when the Phillies win a home game and we belt out, with the video of Harry Kalas, 'High Hopes'.”
I share this with you because music, in its various forms, is a gift that lifts spirits, calms the restless soul, and inspires us to see the beauty around. To the choir of 1st Baptist Church thank you for making this world a better place. Thank you for singing of the moving Spirit of God and challenging me to connect with the Holy through miraculous melodies. Thank you for modeling how we can be our own unique individuals and still come together to make this world a better a better place.
So, what are you listening to these days? Is there a piece of music that resonates with you on difficult days? Are there lyrics that speak life in the midst death? Is there chorus that shines brightly? Le'ts share what we're listening to these day. In the comments below share the title, musician, lyric, or link. Le'ts connect through music!
May the music and the musicians help you connect more deeply to God within and around.
*I searched all over for a video of the piece that The Crossing did at the Perelman Building but could not find it. Instead, below is a link to a piece that I enjoy listening to called 'The Beautiful Land of Nod'.
And for those of you who miss a Phils win and singing with Harry Kalas or have no clue what I am referring to regarding the Phillies, Harry Kalas, and High Hopes, here you go...