Laura at Dad's pianoThere are a lot of sounds in the world but it tend to be the simple ones that move my heart the most.  I love to hear the sound of a single bird announcing the day and the way a chorus  of chirping voices grows to an orchestra of gladness.  I love to hear the laughter of children as they play and the tune a person resonates when his or her spirit is happy.

Our kids started piano lessons young and one has chosen to move from piano to the violin.  Music lessons are an investment in money, time, energy and patience, but as I listen to them play each day, I realize I have received much more than I ever gave.  They play classical music, themes from movies, hymns ancient and new, patriotic  marches, and music I never heard before but which moves my soul nonetheless.

Like any real art, music is a source of grace.  It is a reflection of God’s astounding beauty and it cannot be contained.  Once you make music, you enrich the very air around you and you have the ability to change the world.  Even when I am most irritated, angry, disappointed, frightened or despairing, when I hear the kids playing music, my soul is lifted and my spirit is recharged.

So, as I thank God for all His glory, I am grateful for all the sounds that make our world a better place and our children’s amazing ability to play musical instruments. Through their passion, the world is born anew.

Flame Keepers

autumn sunsetWhen I visit homeschooling family homes I often find things very different from the average homestead.  First, I find a lot of people: kids, parents, friends, other relatives…all working and playing, talking and laughing together….often cooking or building something.  Second, I find shelves full of books…books that have actually been read. Third, I find art work of religious beauty: paintings, statues, hand-drawn pictures, embroidery, pottery, words carved in wood and stone which inspire and encourage.  I find pianos and violins, guitars and flutes and people who know how to make beautiful music, people who like to sing and can sing well. Fourth, I find gardens: flower gardens, vegetable gardens and fruit trees…and the bees to pollinate those trees. Fifth, I am encountering a quiet steadfast joy in these families and homes.  That is not to say that these people don’t work hard, that they don’t get tired, and that they don’t have problems.  But rather that they seem to have held on to the solutions to those problems…which is something in the creative spirit of the human soul…our connection to the God who made us in His image.

I congratulate the flame keepers of this generation.  You are alive, living a fullness of life many may never have the pleasure of experiencing. May you keep your flame bright and may your joy live on long after you….