Unexpected Reminders (Classical Music)

Almost two weeks ago now, I was sitting in church when something unexpected happened. A realization hit me so hard I ended up leaning against the wall sobbing during closing praise.

On the verge of starting my first full time job (as a kindergarten teacher) and shepherding my first small group at church, I assumed that all my energy and all my thoughts should be devoted to those two things. All other relationships, hobbies, and future dreams could be put on the back burner for awhile.

But instead, God reminded me of one of the last things I would have thought appropriate to contemplate in this particular season: My love of classical music.

It keeps coming back at the most random times.

This love was a passion I was always hesitant to take ownership of.

“So I take piano lessons, so what? So I happen to be pretty good, that doesn’t mean I was obsessed with it!” “So I’m a piano performance major, so what? That doesn’t mean I’m a classical music nerd.” I always resisted letting my talent define me. Because it’s true, I am more than a pianist. I am much more than just that.

But while I may turn my back on classical music for 9 months, try to tell myself I can live without it, not consciously think about it for weeks, it always comes crashing back. God reminds me that it’s not something I’m meant to forget.

That Sunday two weeks ago, my pastor preached on Psalm 37:4:

Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.

During the prayer time after the message, God revealed to me what my true desires are and showed me that that is what He wants to give me.

He reminded me of a vivid dream I had had earlier that week.

canstockphoto12354069I had been at a piano recital and been given the opportunity to play, but I simply had nothing prepared. In the dream, I stared longingly at the piano, tried to rack my brain for pieces I could whip up in the spur of the moment, but I was so rusty that I had absolutely nothing I could play with any semblance of ability on stage, so I just walked away. When I woke up, I was filled with an intense longing to perform. I hadn’t felt that desire in a long, long time. I had thought it had fallen asleep, or maybe died.

My pastor prayed, “Some of you feel desires deep inside that you just can’t shake. Those desires are pointing toward the calling God has for you.”

I suddenly remembered all the times God has told me in the past year not to let go of this desire and dream. Despite all my excuses: it’s impractical, unnecessary, unfashionable, He keeps telling me that this hiatus from classical music is just for a season. He keeps sending people to me with encouraging words about it. He keeps putting me in situations that uncover this hidden desire so strongly that I can’t ignore it.

He even reminded me of a vision someone had for me once about my music going out across North Korea. They just said “my music,” and I’d begun thinking that doing worship music and keyboard music and song writing might be enough for me, that that was the kind of music that would most naturally transform the world anyway.

But in that moment, I felt strongly that it’s not. It’s not enough for me. And it’s not supposed to be.

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Elizabeth is an American living in South Korea who believes in destiny, miracles, and living life intentionally. She holds to simple faith in a complex world, values the beauty of the everyday, and strives for vulnerability with other imperfect humans. She is always learning, laughing, and finding herself in awe of grace.

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