1 Timothy 4:12Authorized (King James) Version (AKJV)
12 Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
I remember when I was young(er) taking especial note of the passage above. I taught me to be bold, but also to be sensitive, to others who might be tempted to despise my youth to their experience. I mention that to mention the latter …
It has been a little more than a years since we at Avondale United Methodist Church brought in a new choir director. A very young choir director compared to many of the members of the choir (myself included, I suppose I must admit). I know there were questions about how well such a young director would understand and be able to work with such a mature adult choir. And while he came with heavy credentials and loads of experience, especially for one of his youth (A prodigy of sorts), this would be his first experience in a church setting. Would he be too technical for us?
Well, now that we are in his second year, the second season, I can safely say that all those concerns were certainly put to rest. He was stiff at first, it took him awhile to learn to relax and how to interact with people, but he has settled in nicely. He is already on the third organist he has gotten to work with, learning to handle change. But what I chiefly wanted to mention was the spirituality and musicality he has brought to us.
Avondale has always had an emphasis on good music, well done, from the entire congregation, with an emphasis on worship and ministry. Aaron came in following a director of more than 10 years. And in this one year he has brought us further than we have been previously in the time I have been attending AUMC. He is challenging us to be better — musically and spiritually — with our music. We want to do the best musically, and we want to do it with a conviction that the congregation can feel. Each week I can see the members around me learning something new, rising to new levels — of both musicality and conviction.
Today we did a version of “Abide with Me”. It was a simple piece. Which made it the most difficult to do. Doing simple things well is the real challenge in anything.
And well we did — even with the hornet that was flying around the choir loft. To God Be The Glory.