Amazing Grace ““ Beyond My Doing

Amazing Grace

This morning I woke to a quiet and still house that changed within minutes of my teenage kids coming to life from their slumber. In a half hour the ukulele, guitar, piano and didgeridoo (a long, hollowed-out instrument of the indigenous people of Australia) had all been played. I stood at the kitchen sink and listened to their ensemble of creative sounds, and as their music filled the air I reflected on my latest ventures in learning.

Having a desire to improve my memory has led me to join a group of friends who are learning to play the ukulele, one instrument I’ve done little in the past to learn but felt it would be easy enough to fit into my somewhat busy schedule. We met for the first time on Friday and, for an hour and a half, cheerfully strummed and sung our way through folk, country, reggae, rock-and-roll and, of course, Hawaiian songs. The one rule with this group is “you must sing when you play, no matter how bad you might sound.” I love this because everyone goes into their happy little place without a care in the world once they realize no one cares how bad they may sound, and by understanding that participation is the number one rule they just do it.

After our class ended I decided to challenge myself and anyone else in the group who wished to join in memorizing a first song, “Amazing Grace.” I have played the guitar for years but only play when I have my book of sheet music in front of me. I never really memorized the music and because of that haven’t made the music a part of me. I know that in order to be freed from the restraints of inability to do certain things I must challenge myself beyond those abilities. So, if I learn a new song each week by the end of the year I’ll be able to pick that instrument up anywhere I go and begin to play. By choosing an instrument that doesn’t require perfection to sound good I will be able to throw caution to the wind and just enjoy the process while being surrounded by others who are enjoying that same journey.

I tend to desire knowledge on a continual basis. I believe that is why I always have a book in my hand or nearby. Along with the music lesson this week I’ll be attending four computer classes, a photography lesson on incamera metering and a watercolor painting class. This may sound like an enormous load, but I am looking at the skills and knowledge that will be acquired and, more importantly, where they will possibly take me. I feel it is important to stretch oneself once in a while, not to the breaking point (but possibly just before), in order to push the ceiling up high enough on our abilities. We do this in mountain biking by climbing a hill harder than we feel we can, sometimes close to the point of exhaustion. This strengthens and increases our ability to climb the next time we have a hill placed before us. By repeating this process we become stronger and quicker than if we just slowly climbed the hill each time we were faced with it.

If we wish for changes, for possible miracles in our lives, we must understand that miracles of achievement do not come from only dreaming. It is in stretching long, reaching high, dreaming big and going the distance that miracles can be granted. It is the actions of hard work, desire and faith that will get you to the top. And even though you may not see it, if you do your part and stretch yourself beyond where you think you can go, if more is needed, more will be given. It is then that you will understand the amazing grace that is extended from Heaven.


In Other’s Words:

He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,

He sendeth more strength when the labors increase;

To added affliction He addeth His mercy,

To multiplied trials, His multiplied peace.“

~Annie Johnson Flint~

1 Comment

  1. ShellyBelle

    We must be on the same wavelength. Last week I decided to make of list of 50 Things To Do By The Time I’m 50. So far I’ve only been able to come up with 29 things. At my age, 47 1/2, I better the list finished and starting marking things off it.

    You inspire me!

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