I have a confession to make, school concerts are not my favorite events of the year. Having been a music major in college, I am thrilled when my children are given the opportunity to learn anything about the world of music and the teachers that my children have studied under have been truly amazing. However the actual concerts sometimes bring a bit of dread as I approach the event. There are only so many renditions of Jingle Bells that a first year band class can play without you knowing exactly when to expect a mistake. Often the child I have come to watch is standing in a place that I can’t see from my seat. I’m not sure how well my other children will sit through the event and if I will spend the majority of the concert asking them to sit still. You get the picture.
Recently I found myself in the audience of yet another concert. In our family we require our children to attend every event a sibling participates in if it doesn’t conflict with one of their own commitments. This particular evening 5 out 7 of our children were watching one sibling. The music chosen for the concert was a great mix of traditional and contemporary music. Clearly the teachers had taught some difficult techniques and the students did a very nice job for their skill level. In the midst of the concert, listening to the choir and the orchestra and watching all the little glitches that are inherent in this kind of setting I stumbled upon an unexpected joy. As my son sang a medley of songs with his class I looked over to my 5 year old daughter and was tickled to see her “dancing” in her seat as she was completely engaged in the music. Her heart was moving with the music and she had given herself over to the joy. It was contagious. Her innocent exuberance jolted me out of my preconceived notions and reminded me to rejoice with the students who were using their gifts to praise the Lord.
These are the moments in parenting that catch you off guard. You are sitting in a situation where you think you know exactly what is going to happen and you have prepared yourself for a particular sequence of events. Sometimes I wonder why I am ever surprised by surprises anymore. Maybe I should walk around expecting to see the goodness of God rather than with an I-know-exactly-what-is-going-to-happen-and-nothing-can-surprise-me attitude. My 5 year old didn’t care that others weren’t as into the music as she was. She recognized something that brought her joy and she was ready to respond to it.
Maybe this is why Jesus said we need to be like little children…
Questions or Comments for Lisa? Comment here or email her at email@example.com