The Redemption of Song

Last night’s leaders meeting went alright, I guess. We had a good number come out, especially guys. The real purpose of the meeting was to go over the coming service from beginning to end. Not sure we got through everything good enough, but we should have some people in the room that understand how it’s supposed to go. Me and Th. taught everyone four or so of the songs that we’re going to start singing in our services. For a lot of them, this was their first time to praise their Creator and Savior in song. So besides the necessary awkwardness of following my lead singing, it was a pretty special time. I couldn’t believe how interested the guys were in learning the songs and singing them together! Not naturally much of a guy thing, but they really seemed to enjoy it. Everyone likes music to a certain extent, but when we praise the Lord in song, it becomes infinitely more meaningful, like that’s what music was designed to do in the first place, and all else we’ve experienced is just slightly-out-of-tune, pirated-from-some-shady-website music. At least, that’s what I hope it becomes for them.  

Like I said, there is some awkwardness at first, but I think this culture is actually more geared towards this kind of activity than others, certainly my own. Aside from church and your car, there’s just not a lot of places in America for singing. But here, it seems that singing finds its way into everything. It seems like every game they play, the designated punishment for the loser is to perform a song, even if you’re in the middle of a crowded restaurant (don’t ask how I know). On the main street here in town, there’s amateur concerts (some of them majorly amateur) just about every weekend. Karaoke bars are everywhere. They can’t get enough of it. Maybe there’s been a resurgence since I’ve left, but last time I checked karaoke isn’t really a beloved pastime in America. Somewhere between backgammon and luge. But I’ve probably been to half-a-dozen student activities here where everyone learned a song and sang it together. These songs are normally open-your-veins-in-a-bathtub kinda tunes, but they’re crazy about them.  

Not really any other way to say it, I guess. To teach these guys how to praise the God that loved and redeemed them is just really special. As much as I hate to sing in public, and as bad as I stink at doing so, and as awkward as it feels sometimes, I’m pretty lucky.

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