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Face the Music: Small Congregations Need Music Too!

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Face the Music

Small Congregations Need Music Too!

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Isn't music a wonderful gift of God? Not many gifts can bring such great joy and benefit as music. The greatest expression of this gift is the honor and praise music can bring to God. It adds an emotional connection to our relationship with God. Repeatedly in the Psalms we're taught that God appreciates and desires praises to be sung to Him.

Did you know that you can participate in this wonderful way to worship God and edify His people? One way to contribute is by involving yourself in a small group to present special music at Sabbath services. Not all congregations have enough musical members to have a full choir with a director, but most could still have special music sung or played regularly by a duet, trio or quartet.

Our congregations would undoubtedly benefit by being inspired and having their hearts and minds prepared to hear the sermon. Additionally the musicians are also strengthened as they learn God's Word set to music. Unity is built within the congregation as individuals of various ages work together to rejoice and praise God. Lifelong and eternal bonds of friendship are developed between brethren and with our God.

If you or someone in your congregation has a bit of musical experience, but are unsure how to get started, here are some steps to help you reach your goal:

First, pray for God's guidance and blessing. Ask Him to use you in His service through music. Ask Him to add to your talents. You can also talk to your pastor and ask for his guidance and support. You may need to be a bit of a salesman to help others to participate in this worthy goal.

Next, consider your accompaniment. Do you have a pianist to accompany your group? If not, you may choose prerecorded music or use a midi file played through a keyboard.

Then choosing an appropriate selection is crucial. It must be easy for the people in your group to sing or play. You might even consider a song from the hymnal. Whatever you choose, be sure that it's a fun and enjoyable experience! By providing each participant with purchased sheet music and a rehearsal CD to practice at home, you can insure better success.

Remember, it's not just about the music. It's about the relationships between people and with God encouraged through the music. Music is a wonderful tool to help develop peace, joy and unity that fundamentally come from God. When we're motivated by the right reasons, God can take our efforts and bless them. He can inspire those with nominal musical skills to support and even contribute to special music.

Still apprehensive? More help is on the way. The UCG Choir Rehearsal Music Library has been organized as your resource, by Linda Hansen, under the supervision of UCG national music coordinator Steve Myers. A library of rehearsal music practice parts as well as performance demonstrations, stored as MP3s and midi files, has been created. Now you don't have to go to all the effort of finding and selecting new music or producing practice tapes. Many of the selections in the library may be successfully presented by four singers, or even fewer!

If you are interested in receiving a library listing, please e-mail Linda Hansen at lindarhansen@juno.com. You can even request a CD of rehearsal music and performance demonstrations of selections suitable for your small group. We can also help with information on how and where to purchase sheet music.

Now you have a resource to make it easy to sing a new song to the Lord! UN