Sunday, June 24, 2012

Piano Man


My daughter had the best year in high school choir. Sure her friends made it fun. Perhaps it was a cute boy in the back row. Or more like the cute, hipster, piano-playing college intern. (I'm so on to her.) But I think it boiled down to her fabulous, inspiring, demonstrative, "you can do it" choir instructor.

This guy - with his little strum-pick, Beatle-esque, guitar demos and great choir show song choices - is simply amazing. But what got me was the way he built-up the kids by encouraging the timid, helping the weak, being patient with everyone, and being joyful always... just like in 1 Thessalonians, chapter five.

So not only does he encourage his class as a whole, but he's singled out my daughter. One day while watching the most talented students perform, he whispered in her ear, "That's going to be you next year." And after her audition for treble choir, he said, "You're going to go far."

Gosh, what a far cry from me being nicknamed "Carrots" by a teacher in high school. Not because I looked like Anne of Green Gables, but because of that movie, Sixteen Candles. I guess Molly Ringwald's character was told that eating carrots will make her shape more "womanly." What was my teacher thinking?

By the way, Sixteen Candles? Not family-friendly. So as your kids become teenagers and you say, "Ah, come sit next to your old mom/dad and watch this 80's classic with me," think again. I did that very thing, and for the first 15 minutes, I was all, "Oh wait, I don't remember that part. Oh, and that part. Oops - that part, too."

However, I think my favorite example of encouragement is found in that "Pass it On" commercial. (See "encouragement.") You know, the one where the little boy sneaks up on stage - right before the concert begins - and plays a simple rendition of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on the piano. As everyone rolls their eyes in annoyance, the real musician (the composer) walks out, says "don't stop, keep playing" to the boy, and then accompanies him. And together they make Twinkle Twinkle Little Star sound super fancy.

So let's say, just for fun, that the person who wrote Twinkle Twinkle Little Star was the composer. Who better then to accompany the little boy on the piano than him? And in turn, who better then to accompany me and my comings-and-goings than my composer... my writer... my God? For he's the ultimate piano man, turning my drab into fab!

And when God works his magic by sending encouragers my way OR directly whispering truth to me (that's if I have ears to hear it - saving that for another blog), I find that I become my most real and authentic self. And as long as my daughter doesn't get too side-tracked by cute college interns, her choir teacher's praise will bring out more of the lovely lady who God already sees her to be.

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