Living on the “wrong side” of fifty, I can attest to the fact that sorrows enter every life at one time or another. This past year has been a difficult one for me. Although no one has physically died, I have had cause to grieve the death of a particular desire, hope, and dream. Others I know — some who are close friends, others I know only through their emails and/or blogs — have shared with me their recent or current trials, struggles, losses, shattered dreams, sorrows.
This morning’s entry in Streams in the Desert spoke to my heart and encouraged me a great deal. As I have shared in this blog before, I have the heart of a great singer but not the voice. I don’t make people cover their ears in agony but neither am I encouraged to sing any solos. But I love music. Singing is an important aspect of my worship experience. I love knowing that today’s sorrow is preparing me for a wonderful concert.
No one could learn the song except the 144,000 who had been redeemed from the earth. (Revelation 14:3)
Certain songs can only be learned in the valley. No music school can teach them, for no theory can cause them to be perfectly sung. Their music is found in the heart. They are songs remembered through personal experience, revealing their burdens through the shadows of the past, and soaring on the wings of yesterday.
In this verse, John tells us that even in heaven there will be a song that will only be sung by those “who had been redeemed from the earth.” It is undoubtedly a song of triumph —a hymn of victory to the Christ who set us free. Yet the sense of triumph and freedom will be born from the memory of our past bondage.
No angel, nor even an archangel, will be able to sing the song as beautifully as we will. To do so would require them to pass through our trials, which is something they cannot do. Only the children of the Cross will be equipped to learn the song.
Therefore, dear soul, in this life you are receiving a music lesson from your Father. You are being trained to sing in a choir you cannot yet see, and there will be parts in the chorus that only you can sing. There will be notes too low for the angels to reach, and certain notes so far above the scale that only an angel could reach them. But remember, the deepest notes belong to you and will only be reached by you.
Your Father is training you for a part the angels cannot sing, and His conservatory is the school of sorrows. Others have said that He sends sorrow to test you, yet this is not the case. He sends sorrow to educate you, thereby providing you with the proper training for His heavenly choir.
In the darkest night He is composing your song. In the valley He is tuning your voice. In the storm clouds He is deepening your range. In the rain showers He is sweetening your melody. In the cold He is giving your notes expression. And as you pass at times from hope to fear, He is perfecting the message of your lyrics.
O dear soul, do not despise your school of sorrow. It is bestowing on you a unique part in the heavenly song. George Matheson
Looking forward to singing with you!
In the grip of His grace,