Cry Out With Joy To God, All The Earth
“You finally did it!!”
A moving encouragement I received from Jo after finally being able to cantor last Saturday. Indeed from the past few months I’ve been learning, and praying for my soul to be saved from negative thoughts and the tiring burdens. Letting go past wounds and letting God take charge weren’t easy! However, His helps are consistent. He came to my silent prayers, He encouraged me through my family and friends, and He showed me that everything will be ‘just fine’ if I let Him take charge.
I realize that He has big plans for everyone. When I see things are getting worse (to my eyes), to Him is actually the moment He is at work. He listens to all prayers, and He will fulfill His promises.
Last week, Web called and mentioned the possibility for me to cantor. With no doubt I answered yes. However, surely with my humanly nature, the nervous came back. I began to pray to God “If it’s Your will God, then let it be done”
I received Ben’s psalm tunes last Sunday, indeed a beautiful arrangement as always.
Then, the practicing began, not so much time though since it was a busy week due to my parents’ visits. My hubby has been my powerful listener and critics, he said that my singing hasn’t touched him.., it didn’t deliver the message to him. I didn’t have such confidence like others have. What should I do? Well, I didn’t stop praying and I’d do my best and hoped for the Lord to lead.
On Saturday morning, I tried to practice again, … the more I practice the more I get farther from confidence. My daughter said “mom, just rest, or you will lose your voice” I humbly asked the Lord to never leave me and allow me do this psalm.
Then I went to church. Mrs. Panicky me was told that we might not have pianist today. What’s that supposed to mean? I had to cantor without music, and everyone would notice if I make mistakes. Ben’s playing would be the only beautiful thing for a first-timer like me to cantor. Nervous!
Secondly, Web mentioned that a cantor shouldn’t wear slipper, it didn’t look good. Ok, I could go back and change, but I didn’t think I have any appropriate covered shoes.
“I will borrow someone’s”. Again Nervous!!
I was looking at choir friends’ feet :p No luck! All were wearing sandals, or, shoes which size weren’t the same as mine. Then Yunita said “Eh, Evelyn might wear shoes”, and guess what, she did and shoes did FIT! What a relieved!
Few minutes later, my heart jumped for joy seeing Ben came into church :) YAY! Thank you God!
Ok, everything was back in control.
I prayed for the last time before cantor, I asked the Lord to walk with me. I saw many smiling faces, many uplifting encouragements from brothers and sisters, and I was reminded that letting God take charge would make things easier. Web said ‘when we sing from our hearts, we will do well and pleased God.’ I looked behind, John gestured to me to just let God lead.
A minute before walking to the pulpit I had this sudden worries, “oh no! I suddenly forget the first tune, how did it start?” Stage fright attacked!! I quickly reached my phone inside my bag to hear the resp. tune again. But no time! Seeing my panicky face, Lucy tapped my back and said “He is walking with you, just go”, and Yunita assured me that I will be alright. I kept reminding myself to just focus on singing without looking at the congregation, or else concentration will fall apart!
Voila! I walked from my seat, and with Evelyn smiling at me, I could feel that I really wasn’t alone. I did feel that the Lord was with me, provided me with the beautiful shoes, and walked me with more confidence!
Then, I finally reached the pulpit, and amazingly had this courage to face everyone’s faces. First time in my life! “So, this is the view from up here!” I thought.
Ben started the intro, and suddenly only JOY was around me. I could feel every words and tunes were beautifully harmonized. Looking at the congregation I could feel their thirst to worship God. They were listening and many were mouthing word by word of the song. Beautiful moments! The more I sang the more I could feel His love to every one of us, and He wanted me to pass this message by proclaiming His words. I feel that the air I breathe was Jesus Himself filling up my empty soul.
Praise be to God!
Then I walked back to my seat, again seeing brothers and sisters smiling at me, gave me strength that God is indeed nowhere far, He is among us, and He lives in us.
When I think back, “Where have the nervous gone?! The stage fright…, the worries…?” I can’t even remember how my singing up there. However I believe that it was beautifully taken care by God, and surely “I will tell what He did to my soul”
Praise be to God, and let the Glory just for Him!
I thank the Lord for trusting me to proclaim His words,
I thank the Lord for giving me strength and courage,
I thank the Lord for every blessings and love He gave to me,
and I thank the Lord for giving me lovely family, brothers and sisters in Christ,
who always stay beside me and comfort me at all times.