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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Singing (10/31/05)

TITLE: My Redeemer Lives


Our worship leader can be a pushy fellow. He views it as encouragement. He is very organized and always distributes song sheets and CDís weeks in advance, allowing time for our team to prepare. He is very meticulous in understanding the sermon for that particular week and selecting songs that support the message. In our first practice, we read scripture related to each song and pray together before we begin.

In a few weeks, we would be up to lead worship on Easter Sunday. Tom selected the song, ďMy Redeemer LivesĒ and encouraged me to lead it. As I listened to the song, I admittedly liked it but was overcome with fear of hitting the high notes. I had never led a worship song before and I didnít think it was a good idea to start with such an ambitious one. Especially not on Easter Sunday, with the highest attendance of the year besides maybe Christmas!

I practiced and practiced. I labored and spun, struggling to sing the chorus. With its bluesy sound and strong rock rhythm, I knew my voice had to be strong and I was scared to death.

On that morning, I prayed for courage and confidence and tried to prepare myself for the service. I wrote scriptural reminders on my song sheet to affirm that Godís grace was enough, reminding me to rely on His strength. When the music began, I could feel my legs tingle to the floor as I fidgeted to the sound because the sheer energy within me would not permit me to stand still. I belted out the first notes as powerfully as I could, shaking with every inch of my body. The people were clapping and standing; the room filled with energy and life. As we reached the chorus, I squeezed my eyes shut as I sang, pouring all I could into the delivery of the song. The experience was dreamlike and amazing, yet very different for me. I had always been the girl in the choir who couldnít get above a whisper when asked to sing a duet. I wasnít even considered for a solo because the teacher knew I didnít have the nerve. Yet there I stood leading a congregation in worship on Easter Sunday of all days.

After the service, our minister met me by the side of the stage. He smiled and hugged me exclaiming, ďThat was awesome! I didnít know you had it in you!Ē

ďI didnít either!Ē I cheered.

Looking back, I marvel at Godís perfection in choosing to conquer my fears on the very day He conquered death. My Redeemer lives indeed Ė within me! Embarrassed by my agony over the song, I felt like the Galatians in Paulís reprimand, ďAre you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort?Ē (Gal 3:3, NIV). From that incredible day to this one, I have never again doubted the power of the Spirit.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 11/08/05
Thanks for sharing this story of grace--I wish we all could have been there to hear it!
D. Phenes11/09/05
I have had similar experiences. When we think we do our worst, God can use it and it ministers more than we know.. thanks for sharing. djdeb