The Voice

As I continue to face my fears, pursuing this singing venture … my singing teacher tells me these three points as I work on building my confidence:  

1) Get to know the sound of your own voice and then learn to trust it.

2) You’re hitting the notes, but you get nervous, overthink, forget the words, and miss where you’re supposed to come in. All because you got caught up in a few words you forgot, or your timing went off. 

3) try this: sit on the edge of your chair so your diaphragm has room to expand, but relax into the song, feel the emotion behind the words, what do they mean to you, close your eyes if that helps, and sing the words softly. You know the words, let anxiety go, and the words will come back to you.

4) When you mess up the words, learn to skip over that part, just humm over it or ‘ad lib’ over that part until you can pick up the song again.  It’s your version of a song, and in making it your own, most people will just think it was part of your version. 

Have you ever looked back on your life and questioned the life choices you’ve made? 

Over the last couple of years I have been doing exactly that.  Re-evaluating all the choices I’ve made over the last 25 years.  I can say I honestly believed I was making choices with my life that were in line with what I believed was the plan and purpose God had for me at that time.  And I still believe that … however, now I seem to be on a completely different journey.

But I think we probably all do it at some point … look back on life, maybe overthink it, and question if they were infact the right choices after all.  It’s a tough challenge to face because if I was wrong, then 25 years is along time to be getting it wrong.  

Maybe you’ve been in that place where you chose in line with what you believed? Or maybe you didn’t.

Maybe you’ve been in that place, when life and purpose has not outworked itself the way you had pictured it?

Maybe you’ve been in that place when repeatedly, things didn’t go as you believed, hoped and prayed they would. You began to doubt, and then lost confidence in who you believed was ‘The Voice’ to follow?

Maybe you questioned everything? 

Was everyone right when they said “You’re crazy!”  Maybe you should have been “looking after your own future…” 

But ultimately it comes back to what I believe … and I believe I’m accountable for my one chance at life, and so it’s important for me to follow my heart and the conviction that it carries in order to see the plan and purpose for this life to be outworked.
Well, even as I’m still on that journey, sometimes doubting, sometimes messing up, questioning The Voice, then rediscovering The Voice, learning to trust The Voice again, I’m learning that while the journey has not (thus far) turned out as I had believed, hoped, and prayed for, what is important is that I was faithful to The Voice (which I believe is the voice of God) as He speaks to me.  I followed The Voice to the best of my belief, knowledge, and ability. 
Then, however it works out from there, including those ‘off notes’ in difficult times is all just part of the process of learning to sing my song, to make it my own, and not be a copy of anyone else.

I love (sometimes) how art imitates life… And for me singing is doing just that … and maybe this speaks to you too. 

1) We have to trust the voice! Be it the voice in your head that pushes you to face a new challenge, or the voice of God that  prompts you to follow a dream or take the road less traveled. Get to know what that voice sounds like, feels like, or however it is that it presents itself when it ‘speaks’ to you. Learn to recognise it. Then go with it. 

2) We can be trusting the voice, following it as it leads, hitting the mark, and then for whatever reason, we get nervous, pause, trip up, and then if we’re still caught up in the bit that we got wrong, we can miss what’s coming up. So we need to be … 

3) … living on the edge of our seat, where our lungs can fully expand to breathe in all that they need to, so as to be able to do all that our purpose requires. But then to also relax into that purpose, allowing ourselves to feel what it means to us. Let go of our fears, and then the direction of that purpose will come. Then go with that, and allow it to outwork itself, whatever that looks like …. 

4) And when we mess up, we need to be able to skip over that part and pick up our song as soon as possible. In the meantime, ad lib to fill the gap, and most people will be oblivious to the apparent mess.

 In Jessica Mauboy’s song ‘Wake me up.’ a line that hits home for me is: 

I don’t know where the journey will end, but I know where to start.

None of us know where the journey will end, but I believe if we do our part and listen to The Voice, that’s the start.  Then the rest is up to God … only He knows the end. We can have our own idea about how it might go, but ultimately that’s just our idea … 

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