“… Teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age,” Matt 28:20.
I was teaching a high school brass class in my college years and if you know anything about doing a brass sectional, especially high school, you can’t play continually for very long periods of time. You waste their “chops” and they are no good for the rest of the day. So, I was going to give them a little break and try a theory.
I had just read a great book titled, The Tuning of the World, by R. Murray Schaefer. In the book, the author talks about the sounds all around us. It was a fascinating read. So I had an idea:
First, I had the brass to play any note out loud together. I asked them to do this to ‘cleanse the palette’ – erase any concept of tonality that they would have from the previous piece of music that we rehearsed. After that moment of mind-boggling brass cacophony, I then asked them, “Hum a note, any note, out loud; then I want you to all try to tune that note to each other so it becomes one note.” Then I added, “It will be a low ‘B’ – and slightly flat.” They started humming, and in just a few moments, a unison note occurred. In my best David Copperfield, I asked one of the tuba players to play a ‘B’ which he did – and to everyone surprise (and my relief), his note was just a wee-bit sharp of the note they hummed, but otherwise – a perfect match.
You see, we were sitting in a room illuminated by fluorescent lights, with HVAC, AC-powered clocks, etc. … do you know where I’m going with this? That’s right – the brass players all started humming 60 hertz, which is the compulsory frequency of electrical life in the United States, just a little lower than a ‘B’ natural (61.735 hz). You’d be hard pressed to escape this omnipresent pitch. Now, I agree that this is a handy parlor trick. But it also reminds me of the omnipresence of our Lord. He is present everywhere – there are beautiful reminders of Him everywhere we go.
He will never leave you, nor forsake you!
No matter what the terrain – no matter how ugly the path, through breathtaking beauty or horrific despair – our Lord is ever present, and loving us faithfully.
Batteries not included – nor required. (John Francis is the worship specialist for the Missouri Baptist Convention and produces MoWorship, a monthly worship podcast available at www.mobaptist.org/worship.)