I’ve been thinking quite a bit this week about music. This may surprise those of you who know me well because while I seem to have a distant, curious appreciation for specific musical pieces (quite often related to specific events in my life, most spiritual), I am by no means a committed music fan, much to the frustration of my very deeply musical husband.
I mean, I can read music. I took piano lessons; I played the cello. I appreciate church music most of all and mildly enjoy choral singing once in awhile. However, I do not have an itunes account, listen to my ipod very much at all, guard my CD collection with my life, or tear up when I talk about The Joshua Tree. Got it?
My very kind friend Tim assures me that in our hearts we’re all musical people, but I guess for some of us it’s just a little bigger stretch.
So this week as I spent much of my time pondering Mary’s song in Luke’s Gospel, it was a little bit of a struggle for me. Some of the scholars I read consider the NT books of Luke and Acts, both written by Luke, to actually be commentaries on this beautiful, prophetic song of Mary . . . it’s kind of like a theme song for Luke as he’s writing about Jesus changing his life and changing the world.
Given my musical disconnect, I found it fairly strenuous to think in any disciplined or creative way about Luke’s “theme song,” much less imagining myself at age 13 singing a song like Mary’s (I think I was singing “What a Feeling” along with Irene Cara, to be exact). To think, then, about “a theme song” for my life, even at this, shall we say, more mature stage in my life, was an intimidating struggle.
Thanks be to God that my colleague Leah came to the rescue again (she seems to do this a lot lately). While I’ve never seen Leah tear up over The Joshua Tree, she does usually have really great music playing in her office, and all the stuff I listen to in my car came from her. So when Leah created an Advent Mix, a line formed at her office door for copies.
In her collection I think I found one that can be, for now, a theme song for my life. It’s not profound like Mary’s, and it’s much more self-focused (surprise!) but it’s a beautiful prayer for right now.
I suspect I’ll never find my soul’s expression in music, but maybe as God keeps chipping away at my heart, my own song will sound more and more like Mary’s.