“Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel,
praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.’”
(Luke 2:13-14 NIV)
With the Christmas season comes concerts, lots of them, for an accompanist. My first was a Sunday afternoon Community Christmas program, playing for small groups and a soloist. Each selection sounded like heavenly choirs.
Playing the piano for school choruses is a special treat. I block out an entire day to rehearse at the middle school with assigned time slots for each song. At the beginning of the semester I recorded all the accompaniments for the director to use in class. But now it was time to appear in person for live rehearsals, just days before the performance.
The first class was filled with 8th graders. The teacher greeted me in the hall, since I was delayed by a slow-moving, log truck. When she escorted me in, the class coolly acknowledged my presence, as young teenagers do. The rehearsal went off without a hitch and I returned to my car to catch up on some reading until the next time-slot.
I walked into a class of noisy 7th graders after they had rehearsed an a capella piece. The moment they saw me, they called out in unison, “Hey, Mrs. Johnson!” I was a celebrity! Their enthusiasm was contagious and the rehearsal was refreshing.
After lunch I opened the door to the chorus classroom. A steamy cloud of sweaty, sixth-grade body-odor assaulted me! I quickly popped an Airborne lozenge in my mouth, smiled at the director, and sat at the keyboard. With a few rhythmic claps of her hand, the director had the full attention of the overflowing classroom. She is an amazing instructor, both musically and in her ability to command the attention and interest of so many young people. The students love being in her classes!
Standing to leave while receiving last minute performance instructions, a small girl walked up to me and said, “Thank you so much for playing for us!” What a jewel!
The Middle School’s Christmas concert was captivating and worshipful, as was the High School’s concert the same week. What an honor to serve in His kingdom in this way, especially at the celebration of His birth.
I will praise God with the angels today. I hope you will, too!