Monday, February 1, 2016


I sat reading a popular women's magazine as I waited my turn to have my hair done recently. I always pick up some useful trivia there in addition to new recipes that I will probably never try. I came upon the following gem: "Researchers claim that singing is a stress reducer. Because it uses both sides of your brain, it literally takes your mind off your worries. You also get a shot of energy because crooning boosts oxygen and blood flow." There are lots of perks to singing.

Well, thanks but no thanks for the reminder of one of the losses of the senior stage of life! I find it especially difficult to accept the loss of my singing voice. I still have a fair measure of my speaking voice, but it too is somewhat raspy and fluctuates in pitch.

I happily sang all through childhood. I didn't have the talent nor discipline to play an instrument although I longed to do so. But I could sing. I sang my way throughout high school and college participating in choruses and operettas and church choirs. I traveled with the Women's Glee Club all four of my college years performing in concerts throughout the country during seasonal school breaks. Then lung cancer surgery and the aging factor put me at a disadvantage with diminished lung capacity. Allergies also plague me, and since I wear hearing aids, my own singing voice sounds unfamiliar to me.

Ah, so many things to learn in one's late calendar years! So many changes to adjust to in my body's natural declining condition! Saint Paul, who more than likely was quite advanced in years when he wrote his letter to the Philippians and coping with his own growing limitations, addressed the issue of changing situations and conditions. Even he had to learn to be content in whatever circumstances the Lord placed him. Nevertheless, he concluded his testimony in chapter four not with a whine or complaint on a sad note but with the challenging testimony, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." 

Since I can't sing as a performer in church or in public, I can "sing unto the Lord" in private no matter how hoarse or scratchy my tonal quality. I can even sing at the top of my lungs, if no one else is around! If I can't sing aloud, I can “make melody in my heart." Since I sing for an audience of One, Jesus, He may even applaud my efforts and I'm more than happy to comply with an encore. I'm determined to keep singing for Him and make the invisible "hills come alive with music." 

After all, the loss of my singing voice is just a temporary condition for this mortal segment of my life. By and by, in the not too distant future, I may have the opportunity to sing with an angelic chorus. Surely there is enough room in the vast universe for many choirs to praise God, and the acoustics must be spectacular! I might not even have to audition since my voice will be perfect then. The music Up There must be fantastic and no health conditions or shortness of breath will need to be factored in. 

I wouldn't be surprised if Handel or Mozart or Mendelssohn were still composing and conducting. For sure Beethoven is no longer deaf and he is finally hearing his own compositions!

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