The Choir

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The Choir

“SHUT UP!!!!”

“I won’t,” she said, firmly.
“It’s time you face this, and I’m not going to….”

“BLAHBLAHBLAH,” I said again and again with my hands clamped
over my ears until I was done with my snit.

That was stupid,”
she said.

Silence.  “I know,

She said, “How long are you going fight what you really
want?  What do you have?”

“A good voice.”

“And you’re doing what with it?”

“Singing rock and blues.”

“And what’s killing you?”

“I want to sing classical music in an Episcopal choir again.”

My heart and I fight a lot. Many times I don’t let her win, because I won’t go that deep into my soul where longing lives.  Sometimes the thing I crave isn’t good for me.  Then there are things that just aren’t possible.  Occasionally miracles happen.
This year I was given one of the greatest opportunities of my life:  to write a book and see it published.  For a life-long writer, this is heaven.  But to deny another dream is hell.

I’m an aging hippie who still loves rock and roll, but in high school I developed a passion for the great sacred choral works through honors choir.  I’m still smitten with it.  Much of my life I’ve gotten my fix in Episcopal churches, but several years ago we left to join a contemporary church named Heartsong because of God’s call to both Bud and me.  Here was a place we could bring people
unaccustomed to church where they would fit right in:  no liturgy or dress code or anything that would intimidate someone scared to death or hostile to God.  We love our church, and are deeply involved in missions and ministry.  And yet…

“Don’t go there, Joy – not where your heart keeps crying for
more.  I can’t have both,” I said.

“Who says?” she said. “Do you know this for sure?  Have you asked?  Don’t you have a friend who’s a member of Holy Communion?  Why don’t you call her and check it out?”

“I guess I could go and, um, just visit.  Enjoy the music and service.”

‘DANGER, DANGER!” I screamed inside.  But now, I couldn’t not go.  Cried all Saturday, singing along with Bach’s Magnificat
and Rachmaninoff’s Vespers on the stereo. “Why are you hurting yourself?” I wondered.  And then I went to church this morning.

It was glorious – the hymns, liturgy, incense, the works.  And the choir….oh my God.  Oh my God was talking to me saying, “It’s
time.  This place has a different choir for each of the two services.  You can sing here at 9:00 and be at Heartsong in time for the 11:00 service.  You can have both of your heart’s desires.”

My heart had been telling me the truth all along, but I hadn’t listened, because I was convinced it wasn’t possible to have both desires at the same time.  But it was.  And I had never asked.

The great classical choral works open doors inside me for which nothing else has the key.  And what comes out is pure joy.  Bud says what comes out is Joy.  I’m radiant when I sing.  My whole body, mind, and soul glow.  Just like when God is my co-author as I write.  Pure joy.  Pure me.  Pure God.

I think I was a road hazard driving home today.  I was floating amidst angels.  Singing, of course.








About the Author:

I never have found a box that fits me, so I follow Jesus into the wild. My husband, Bud, and I are two life-long hippies, parents of four grown children, and live in Bartlett, TN, with six cats, two dogs, and no TV. I am a voracious reader and am passionate about prison ministry. I am also an advocate for middle-aged and senior women, and anyone who suffers from depression.

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