I have lost my singing/speaking voice only once in my life. I had just completed a Palm Sunday performance of the Brahms Requiem, in which I was the soprano soloist. Some time during the reception to follow, my voice suddenly closed down. And so it remained for a full six days. I was advised to drink a lot of water, rest as much as a church worker can during Holy Week, and stop trying to talk. My greatest anxiety came with the awareness that I was scheduled to lead the musical worship at a large Easter sunrise service the following Sunday. I went to bed Saturday night unable to sustain a tone, but in faith I set my alarm for 4 a.m.—the service began at 5:30—not knowing what else to do, frankly. I got up, took a hot, steamy shower, and started to warm up vocally. It was all there, well-rested and ready to go, and a very grateful musician drove into the foggy morning eager to sing God’s praises and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Scary? You bet! A faith-stretcher? Unmistakably! Putting God to the test? I don’t think so; more likely God was putting me to the test.
In the last several years, there has been a lot of talk in the PC(USA) about “voices at the table.” People and groups have complained that their voices have been silenced. Others have felt their voices have been drowned out. I would go so far as to say, in some church environments, that the voice of God has been taken off the air, which should be the most concerning thing of all. A high value has been placed on giving voice to the voiceless, as a matter of justice. The voice of a small minority is given equal time to that of the majority as though it has equal value, truth, or reasonableness. In Christian circles, this extends to the implicit belief that all opinions are biblical and faithful and must be included in our consultation with each other. The unintended consequence of the equal time rule, paralleled in 21st century journalism, is the perception that the house is far more equally divided than it might actually be. This offers the minority the advantage of more air time; we all know, the more times we hear an assertion, the more likely we are to believe it to be true. The church has undergone a major shift in its thinking and practice, precisely because a very vocal minority convinced the majority that theirs in the prevailing and right view.
Read more of this story at Bringing the Word to Life.