Saturday, January 8, 2011


“It may not be on the mountain height Or over the stormy sea, It may not be at the battle’s front My Lord will have need of me. But if, by a still, small voice he calls To paths that I do not know, I’ll answer, dear Lord, with my hand in thine: I’ll go where you want me to go.”

Living our lives as instruments in the Lord’s hands is a matter of faith and trust in God that he will direct our paths for good... Henry B. Eyring said, “Trust comes from knowing God.” In Psalm 46:10 we read, “Be still, and know that I am God” I cannot tell you how this faith is developed for everyone, but I can tell you for me it was a process. A process that began with an internal desire and a curiosity. The visual was intriguing. A poem by Myra Brooks Welch:

’Twas battered and scarred, and the auctioneer Thought it scarcely worth his while To waste much time on the old violin, But held it up with a smile: “What am I bidden, good folks,” he cried, “Who’ll start the bidding for me?” “A dollar, a dollar”; then, “Two!” “Only two? Two dollars, and who’ll make it three? Three dollars, once; three dollars, twice; Going for three—” But no, From the room, far back, a gray-haired man came forward and picked up the bow; Then, wiping the dust from the old violin, And tightening the loose strings, He played a melody pure and sweet as a caroling angel sings. The music ceased, and the auctioneer, with a voice that was quiet and low, said, “What am I bid for the old violin?” And he held it up with the bow. “A thousand dollars, and who’ll make it two? Two thousand! And who’ll make it three? Three thousand, once, three thousand, twice, And going, and gone!” said he. The people cheered, but some of them cried, “We do not quite understand what changed its worth.” Swift came the reply: “The touch of a master’s hand.” And many a man with life out of tune, and battered and scarred with sin, is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd, much like the old violin. A “mess of pottage,” a glass of wine, A game—and he travels on. He’s “going” once, and “going” twice, He’s “going” and almost “gone.” But the Master comes, and the foolish crowd never can quite understand the worth of a soul and the change that’s wrought by the touch of the Master’s hand.

Often I feel like I am much like that violin. I am simple and often look battered and scarred. Life has me in a rush. I am not someone within my community who anyone would look to as a person of great value.

My daughter plays the violin and I remember the first concert we went to. It began with the “Beginners” and proceeded to more advanced levels from there. When the “Beginners” came out on stage they ‘squeaked’ out the melody “Mississippi Hot Dog”. It was a bit painful. But the proud parents applauded. At the end of the concert the Advanced students played a melody that was beautiful to listen to.

If I am that violin… what tune do I want to have played? Do I want to be Mississippi Hot Dog forever? Because I certainly feel that despite my life experience thus far, I am still a beginner and when attempting to control my own life… watching me can be painful. But I, as each of us, has the opportunity for the Master’s hand to touch my life and use me as His instrument in creating a symphony. When faced with that choice, I want, hands down, to be used by Him… to be a part of something I could not conduct on my own.

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