I recently joined the choir at church. I love to sing—in the car, in the shower, as I’m going about my tasks at home, on Sundays in church—but I have never been part of a choir. My first obstacle is that I don’t read music, but they assured me that wouldn’t be a problem. My second obstacle was that I normally teach Bible study during the same time the choir practices, but our study has ended for the year and that time is now free.
So, I joined the choir. And, oh dear, is it ever different from singing in the car! The sheet music holds a slight resemblance to the pages of the hymnals in the pews—but only barely. During the entire first practice I felt so lost. Being an alto means that I can’t just sing along with the melody, but must learn to harmonize, which sounds so lovely when it’s done well, and not so lovely when it’s not. Fortunately, I sat next to a sweet friend who also sings alto, and I followed her like an imprinting duckling.
I’m certain that if I stick it out and learn to sing with the choir it will be worth it, because I do love to sing. I particularly love hymns. Filled with scripture and sound doctrine and written to lift the heart, mind, and soul to God, the hymns of our faith are a means of reminding us of truth and encouraging us in our walk with Christ. But singing is not the only way to enjoy them.