“Take Diversion” signs are quite common where I live. The roads seem to be always under construction, it’s difficult to reach your destination if you’re not aware of the alternatives! 😀
In life “take diversion” moments occur. While some take us to a better place, we could also end up in the wrong places.
I was fortunate enough to have one such diversion last week that has changed my life dramatically.
It was not just one event, a sequence of events which pushed me to take that necessary diversion and gave me the realisation of a lifetime.
Here in our college, every year the senior students with the help of a few elders organize a one day(half a day,to be exact!) retreat exclusively for the students of our college, to tell them more about Jesus and also to guide them on technical lines. God has been faithfully leading this event-“Gloria” all through the years and this year,yet again, He blessed it for us. The theme for this year’s Gloria was “Leadership works”.
This is the second Gloria for me, but this is the first time I participated. Since I am a day scholar, I wasn’t much aware of this last year as most of the responsibilities and activities are usually taken up the hostelers. When I found it extremely useful last year, I decided I would participate in the next three “Gloria”s.
I’ve always been a part of my school choir, so I enrolled myself for the Gloria choir too. During one of the practices, our choir master heard my voice and asked me to try out a solo. I’ve always been a stage person. I actively participate in many events and competitions but still everytime I get on a stage, I feel those butterflies in my stomach. Tried hard to get them out, somehow they still flutter! A solo ? That would mean standing alone on a stage and everyone listening to me, just me! Fear caught me real bad. But then I said yes and that I would try. He made me sing a few lines and finally said, “Yes, you are singing Softly and Tenderly as a solo.” That’s an amazing song, one of my most favourite ones. While on one hand, I was happy that I didn’t have to learn any new song, on the other hand I knew the risks of singing a well known song.
These were the first reactions to my solo opportunity. I should not screw up, I should not screw up, I should not screw up. As days passed by, God made me realise that I was given this opportunity not to display my talent but to actually softly and tenderly call people to Jesus. I had been so preoccupied with the thought of having to sing before a hall of audience that I forgot why I was actually doing it. I was doing it for Him, for Him alone. When this realisation struck me, practice days were never the same.
I’ve had a problem trusting God completely for a long time. Even though I decide not to question Him, I always ask God,”Why Lord,why?” This time the same why question. Not “Why Lord”, but “Why me Lord?”. I know there are many students in my college who can sing beautifully. But out of all, He chose me. I kept asking Him,”Why do you trust me so much?”. I almost felt like I didn’t deserve the chance. Like I don’t deserve to sing the Lord’s song. I felt smaller and smaller and smaller. And that’s when I knew, He is teaching me humility.
As I already mentioned, I’ve been a stage person all my life. Everytime I put up a good show, my parents tell me, “Always thank God”. I do, but then I also take some of the praise to my credit. I feel a little proud when people come and commend me on my performance. I try not to, but still I used to be under the impression that my talent is what brings me praise. This is one quality God wanted to change in me. Oh, how wonderful are His ways. Everytime my choir master or someone said it’s coming up well, I was humbled more and more. I wasn’t able to take any pride for myself, I knew nothing would be possible without Him.
The day finally arrived. I still was so afraid on the inside but at the same time was thanking and praising God for all the love and mercy He’s shown me. As we sat there waiting for the event to officially begin, one of my friend’s father came up to the front to help her set the keyboard. As I saw him helping her out, I was filled with tears. Both my mom and dad were not able to make it to Gloria that day. I felt like it was an important moment in my life and that they were missing it. Even now as I type this, I’m fighting my tears back. My thoughts didn’t stop there, I started thinking about my grandparents who are no more and also my very first choir master who is no more either. Tears just kept coming. I didn’t want anyone asking me why I was crying, so I tried my best to conceal it. They started playing a video and so I thought that would distract me for a while.
And what was played? Jesus on the cross. More and more tears. At that point I brought myself to the lowest possible level and for the very first time, I felt I AM NOTHING.HE IS EVERYTHING. I could feel it, I knew God was at work. Those mixture of feelings I had for a few seconds, I could never put it in words. That was a life changing moment for me. I can never ever be the same old LynAn anymore. It was a dramatic change. A kind of change which I never thought would happen in such a short time.
Minutes before the song,my choir master called me aside and he asked me to speak a few words before the song. For the VERY FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE, I had no fear of what I was going to speak. I knew He would give me the right words to say.
And He did. He also helped me render the song well. It was a blessing to many, especially to me.
I can never thank Him enough for the wonderful lessons He taught me during the course of the last month.
Life is beautiful my friend. It’s just oh so beautiful. It’s a gift from God’s own mighty Hands. Trust me when I say this- He cares for you in ways you can never imagine. He is DEEPLY in love with you. I hope and pray that you, the reader would also be blessed with such wonderful “take diversion” moments in your life.
May I be humbled Lord, may You be glorified.
P.S: I’m sharing the audio track of my rendition of the song. Before you listen to it, there are some things you should know. This was recorded by my friend on her mobile phone, sitting rows away from the stage, so you will be hearing people talking. The audio quality may hurt your ear during the high notes. And the word “come” was pronounced “kem” on purpose. My choir master taught me that it was the right way to sing. The song just starts from a random point, it doesn’t have the beginning. And finally, all praise and glory to Jesus alone!