The Lost Chord
"Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men [and women] of courage; be strong. Do everything in love."1
Joy, my wife, is a harpist and for many years she and her fellow harpist friend, Susan, played harp duets. On one occasion they practiced for endless hours to master a particularly difficult arrangement of "The Lord's Prayer." After the service where they played this duet, a man rushed up to thank them for playing such a magnificent rendering of "The Lost Chord."
What a letdown for Joy and Susan. Joy and I laugh about it now but it didn't feel so good for her and Susan at the time.
But isn't life like that? No matter what we do, how hard we work at it, how good a job we do of it, there will always be someone who doesn't get it, doesn't like it, misses the point, or who will find fault with whatever we do.
In my line of work—writing Daily Encounters for one thing—I sometimes experience this. When I fail to be "politically correct," some readers love it and others hate it. Some commend me. Others criticize me. That's par for the course, and for those who want to make a difference in life, that's par for the course of life. People who aim to please everybody end up pleasing nobody.
As Christians, our responsibility is to be witnesses for Jesus—not to be politically correct people pleasers. I like what an English Bishop once said, "Everywhere Paul went there was either a revival or a revolution. Everywhere I go they serve tea."
I hate tea, if you get my drift!
In this day of ever-decreasing moral standards and increasing evil, would to God that there were more "Apostle Pauls" in our pulpits and "Apostle Paul" type politicians in leadership positions who would cause or at least trigger spiritual revivals and/or moral revolutions.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me always to stand firm in the faith and to live and work in harmony with your Word in order to bring glory to you—and never be a people pleaser for my own praise and glory. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 (NIV).