MUSIC TO HIS EARS – WALKING IN TUNE WITH GOD
Roxann M. Morgan
When I fell into sin again recently, I felt as if I could never be restored and that I didn't deserve to be called a servant of God. The guilt and condemnation slowly silenced me, but God whispered something into my spirit that pushed me to dig deeper. "I'm desiring a different note from your walk," He said. "I'm going to tune you."
In my attempt to grasp the whole process of tuning, I researched the piano. This intriguing instrument with its capacity to deliver the most beautiful melodies, can also become the most horrid when it needs to be tuned. In the same way, our steps of faithfulness play different notes that send beautiful melodies to the throne room of God, and then send the angels dancing with great rejoicing. However, when we need to be ‘tuned’ by God, our notes can become bland. A friend of mine put it this way, "They sound awful if you don't [tune them]. Once in tune, pianos can be played beautifully and melodies flow easily." No pianist sits at a grand piano hoping to deliver mediocre music, but with every strum of the key, he hopes to tantalize his audience’s eardrums and surprise them with his extraordinary delivery. The same can be said for God. When He strums the keys of our hearts, His desire is to propel us into transformation. But even with the grandeur of a grand piano, if it needs to be tuned, even the most magnificent music can become mundane.
Hidden under the music desk is the most fragile part of the piano. This is the place where it is suggested that only a tuner should put his hands. Your heart is God's music desk; it holds all the key things to the melodies that your walk with Him relays. We are warned to 'guard our hearts' (Proverbs 4:23), because the contents of this fragile part of us determines our response to the keys He strums. If we are burdened by bitterness, sin, hurts or anything, it is reflected in our sound, so God calls us to cast all our burdens on Him and take His yoke instead (Matthew 11:30). He wants us to be free from the burden of sin, and so He died for us so that the symphony can resound and call all His instruments back to Him. If He shakes you, He is not intending to hurt you, but to remove the old things from your life that have somehow weighed you down. He knows us better than we know ourselves. He delights in us and longs to hold those who are lost. Trust Him to remove the things that are burdening you. He is willing to make you into a new person and remove the burden that accompanies sin and the shame of your past.
The process of tuning pianos requires exposing them, but the good thing is that the tuner is the only one that does this. When a piano needs to be re-strung, it would be dangerous for a tuner to look to someone, like myself, who knows very little about the instrument to do this. The risk of possible damage would become a reality. This is why God never asks us to call on anyone else. He knows that if left unsupervised in the hands of someone else, we are at risk of being harmed. When we, His instruments, need to be held and loved, He knows that He is the One that does this best. He knows our struggles and is familiar with all our grief (Isaiah 53:3), so when we are exposed to hurt, unless He comes and heal our wounds or dry our tears, our vulnerable hearts will remain exposed.
We often exit a season with a series of tests or trials. This is one of God’s ways of tuning us. Whether we have been walking the road of faith for years or we are just embarking on the journey, this is an inevitable and extremely necessary process. God’s desire is that we welcome each new season with a transformed character and sharper vision. It was said that pianos take some time to adjust to a change in temperature or environments. There are different seasons in our lives, and like the piano, we take time to adjust to each season and the changes they bring. When we transition into a new season, after shedding the old and we are 're-strung', we have to be constantly played by God in order for our new strings to adjust. Maybe you have just entered a new season – you are transitioning into a marriage, a new job, or a new location. Perhaps you have just exited a season of loss – a loved one has passed on, a career you have worked hard for has been taken away, or maybe you have been rejected and you are hurting. Allow God to remove the old strings and put the new strings in your life. Allow Him to strum the keys of your heart until you adjust and your tune becomes a melody that others will hear and be ministered to.
Despite what you have been through, remember when we are exiting a season in our life, something has to fall away to make room for the new. Unless a seed falls to the ground and dies, it cannot bear fruit (John 12:24). So if you have exited a season with your head hanging in shame or discomfort, enter your new season with your arms ready to embrace whatever new treasure with which God is willing to bless you. It is not the transportation that causes a piano's tune to be off key. It is mainly the piano’s adaptation to its new environment. So if you have turned your heart away from God because of your loss, allow Him to comfort you and help you adjust to your new season. Your loss will give birth to new things, and will produce life-changing melodies in God.
I am now in the process of restoration, and it is in this transitory stage that God has taught me about healing critical wounds, which has led me to the slipping tuning pins. Tuning pins are vital to a piano, because they hold the strings in place. The strings create the sound, the tension of a piano’s strings affects the sound, which affects the melody. Slipping or loose tuning pins can cause a piano to go flat. One web site even warned that older pianos, because of their constant exposure to seasonal humidity changes over the years, can have loose tuning pins. As a result, they can develop poor tuning stability, and so it suggested that pianos be tuned at least a month after every season change.
God takes us through transition gradually, and never allows us to go through things to harm us, but to build us. When you have endured the constant changes of seasons in your life, from loss to gain and joy to sadness, you will need to be moulded each and every time by God. He needs to help your heart adjust to every new stage of your life, whether it's a winter season, when you seem to be blanketed or hidden, or a spring season, when new things are being birthed. You need to be touched by God's healing hands or your tunes will go flat, and your ministry will seem as if it is dying. He longs to get inside your heart and touch you. If it is that you have fallen away from Him and feel like an outcast, He wants to touch you, and pour new life into you. Your keys will be strummed by His gentle hands to create a melody that will bring healing to the people with whom you come in contact, and will also minister to your wounded heart.
We all have specific tunes we want to play for God to express our gratitude or our pain. God's love for the sound of the melodies is reflected in His care for His instruments. The heart of the melody is what matters most. We all play different notes, but like a good maestro, God instructs every melody into ministry. So some notes are played with a tinge of hurt, pain, or disappointment, while others are highlighted with joy, peace, and gratitude, but every note is beneficial to the corporate sound of His orchestra of worshipers. It's also good to note that a concert piano is tuned before every performance.
What have you gone through that has caused you to believe that you are no longer valuable to God? What have you fallen into that has caused you to doubt your ability to make His heart delight in you? Nothing you do can separate you from the love of God (Romans 8:38 – 39). When you fall into sin, it plays a different note, and God’s great mercy and grace incorporates that note into the symphony, allowing you to add to the music of Heaven. So be free from the burden of sin by calling on Jesus, tell Him what has weighed you down, and He will heal your broken heart and clothe you in His love. Your battered strings will be replaced by gentle hands, which will bring peace to your soul.
Isaiah 53:3 – 5 (NLV)
3 He [Jesus] was despised and rejected – a man of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief. We turned our backs on Him and looked the other way when He went by. He was despised, and we did not care.
4 Yet it was our weaknesses, sickness and diseases He carried; it was our sorrows that weighed Him down. And we thought His troubles were a punishment from God for His own sins!
5 But He was wounded and crushed for our sins. He was beaten that we might have peace. He was whipped, and we were healed!
2 Samuel 14:14 (NLV)
It is sure that we will die. We are like water poured on the ground, which cannot be picked up again. But God does not take away life. He plans ways so that the one who is driven away may not be kept away from Him.
1 Peter 5:6-7 (NLV)
6 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and in His good time He will honor you.
7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about what happens to you.
Roxann M. Morgan
To contact the author, readers may email her at firstname.lastname@example.org