When my son was little, we sang to him every night. We had a song book and picked songs each night. He liked to request his favorites like Blackbird and Baby Beluga. It is possible we sang Baby Beluga 5,000 times. Well, at least 1,000! We enjoyed Michael Row Your Boat Ashore, Swing Low Sweet Chariot and Dirty Old Town.
We stopped singing him to sleep when he grew older, but we kept the daily singing habit. Now we sing spontaneously about doing the laundry, watering the plants or making coffee. We are enthusiastic, determined and throaty but not what you would call “good singers.”
I believe singing—even (or especially!) amateur attempts like ours—is natural and holy.
I’m grateful we started the tradition of singing because it makes our home cheery. Even a little hum helps grow happiness. Try it right now! Hmmmmmm
Find your power
In church on Sunday, I sat in front of a professionally trained singer named Kathy. With a voice as clear as meditation, she found the notes for us. She made it easier to join the harmony and our pew sounded better than usual. She clarified our muddy sounds on the strength of her ability alone.
It’s important to surround yourself with strong people. If you are around watered-down people, you will find dilution normal. Find people who are seeking what you are seeking so you can travel together. Befriend people who use their voices. They can help you find your song.
I love list-making, planning and SMART goal setting. Most years, I relish the opportunity to make resolutions. But not this year. After prayer, I recognized that if I focus on Spirit and the joy of living, everything else will fall in place. Rather than set goals, I need to relax and let God work.
Instead of a resolution for 2014, I have decided to pick a theme song. My song for this year will be Simple Gifts. I plan to sing or hear it every day. I will let the lyrics speak to me and guide my life.
I hope we sing our whole lives, even when we are frail and our legs stop working. I hope we’ll sing about that.
And then when we lose our voices, I hope we’ll sing with our eyes.
all the earth hums your frequency of union.
Our lives overlap like a musical round.
May we sing your name so it rings out
Help us shed our self-absorption.
Keep our focus on you.
Like the little drummer boy,
may we offer you all we have with pure hearts.
Bless us with reasons to sing and
voices to make a joyful sound!
Tell me your thoughts!
Is there a part of your life that needs healing or adjustment? What music soothes your soul? Who makes you sing better? What will your song be for 2014? I’d love to hear from you!
14 thoughts on “Forget resolutions…Sing in the new year!”
I just pulled out my favorite songbook, Rise Up Singing because I want to sing more in 2014. I will leave it where I can see it daily. My favorite line, “It’s important to surround yourself with strong people.”
…And that songbook you gave us was exactly the one we sang from for years!! Here is to a year of more singing!
While you’re singing Simple Gifts, I’ll be singing Simple Man. Happy New Year!
This makes me happy 😀
Loved this post–a great way to ring-sing in the new year. I will think of this when I feel the joy during our KISS-ukulele sing alongs!
Oh yeah! It’s all about feeling the fun, love and joy of being alive in a world where one rockin’ KISS-ukulele band knows how to get their jam on! Keep it up!
I’m not a singer, but my husband loves to sing, and I love that he does! He makes up all kinds of crazy songs, but it’s fun. I’m going to try to sing more, too! Happy New Year!
It must be great to hear him make your home musical! I hope you will have fun joining him in joyful silly songs! Many blessings to you in the new year 😀
Thanks, Gen. 🙂 Have a super week!
Your words are truly “music to me”. As long as I can remember, one of the loudest ways I have heard the good Lord speak to me is through music. I love all kinds of music – but Christian music truly feeds my soul. Love your thoughts on this!!!
I can tell this is a message from your heart. I love hearing you sing, Pat! I agree with you about feeling the presence of God in music. Thank you for adding your thoughts here, and may the new year bless you with many more reasons to sing and praise!
Hi Genevieve — I just discovered your lovely blog today! You are blessed to have so much joy in life. For the New Year, I’ve resolved that every day I will visit and comment on a blog that brings kindness and joy to the world, while also maintaining a list on my own site to help my readers find positive blogs. After reading this post, I’ll make sure that I leave some time for singing too! One of my all-time favorite songs is the 1960s classic “Both Sides Now” by Judy Collins. The lyrics describe how there are different ways of looking at our lives, and the more we reflect on what we’ve experienced, the more we realize we don’t know.
That’s a great song! Judy Collins has a wonderful version of Simple Gifts too. Thank you for your kind comment. Blessings to you as you seek joy this year!