Eternal Songs

December 16, 2007
by Iris Ford

Psalm 28:7 – The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song. (NIV)

I have often wondered about the music of the angels. Do they use words when they sing?

Or do angels use a different mode of expression, without words? Toddlers gain the use of words quite easily, but prior to that, they express themselves in other ways. So, I wonder if the music of an instrument reaches the level of expression that comes close to that of the angels — wordless. Is there a music of the soul that we are born with, for instance, that reaches God?

Oliver Sacks, writing in Macleans magazine (October 29, 2007), suggests that music is in our neural wiring. Even those souls who are autistic or suffer from Tourette's syndrome find comfort in music. Sacks goes on to say that for virtually all of us, music has great power. What Christian, listening to Handel's Messiah, denies that? None of us. Even if we are tone deaf, we feel something special as the music carries us with it into the realm of awe and wonder — God's presence.

The Bible lists many instruments used in the praise of God: tambourines, cymbals, ten-stringed instruments, the lyre, the harp, and we mustn't forget the pipes. With these they "made music to the Lord" (Judges 5:3). Music was a special avenue used to uplift the soul in the praise of God.

People today are shy about praying out loud in public, feeling unworthy as they struggle to put their thoughts into words. Others are shy about singing, knowing themselves to be tone deaf. It is a shame that we have become such a wordy people that we have forgotten how to tune into the soul's song. It is in all of us, and it can free us from the restraints we feel when worshipping God.

As we sing, we know in the depths of our hearts that it is our soul that is expressing our love for the Lord and our heartfelt praise of God, our Creator. As today's verse says, "My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to Him in song."

    Thou who art beyond the farthest
    mortal eye can scan,
    can it be that thou regardest
    songs of sinful man?
    Can we know that thou art near us
    and wilt hear us?
    Yea, we can.

    Angel Voices Ever Singing — Francis Pott, 1866

Prayer: Lord, as we join the heavenly realm in singing Your praise, may Your music fill our souls and carry us through all we do this day. May the eternal song in our souls give everlasting praise to You. And on that day of days when we kneel before Your throne, may we share in a glorious chorus: "Alleluia!" Amen.

About the author:

Iris Ford
Parksville, British Columbia, Canada

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