It Is Music to My Soul

  • Randy Karlberg
Sheet Music

When you really think about it, music is very powerful. Isn’t it amazing how you can hear a song that you have not heard in 20 plus years and suddenly you are transported to a moment in time where this song brings back a memory or pleasant feeling?Who among us has not expressed, “I have had this song stuck in my head all day long”? Does not listening to music make even the most intolerable job bearable? Music has the power to unite the human spirit together in a way that is really difficult to describe. It has been shown that music speaks to a person at levels that are much deeper than first realized. The contribution from music on a person’s mood, reduction of depression, and overall quality of life is quite remarkable.

This past spring our family walked through the incredibly difficult battle of our father dealing with dementia. It was extremely difficult to process as he lost his ability to string together words into sentences. A man who had a long and wonderful career preaching and talking with people had lost his ability to hold a conversation. He would get a glimmer in his eye when we would remind him of a story from his past, but the greatest connection with him came when we would sing hymns with him. Hymns that he had been singing ever since he was a child. He would focus wide-eyed on our faces and even quote some of the lines as we belted out the old favorites. This was a connection at a deep level with our Dad in a very vulnerable time of his life – a level that we were not able to connect in any other way. Those hymns spoke deep into his soul.

I do not have the knowledge to explain what is going on when we connect with music. I am sure you can find a good article or two on this. However, what I do know is that the Bible not only endorses music to speak to our inner being, but it commands believers in Jesus Christ to make Word centered music a significant part of our lives. Colossians 3:16-17 states this requirement:

“Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”

This shows us that singing is as important in the life of a believer as teaching and discussing wisdom together. As a matter of fact, music is a great way to memorize Scripture. It seems so much easier to remember a Biblical passage when it is put to a memorable tune. I Corinthians 14 tells the church to have a song ready when they come to meet together.

Music can increase our joy levels. It also soothes our pain when we melodiously dwell on comforting Biblical truth. It can help make sense of hurt and pain when words do not suffice. When we are at a moment in our lives where we are not sure what to do next, a song of praise or a ballad of lament can raise one’s spirit. The key elements in using music to make this type of impact are these. First, be obedient and begin by opening your mouth and letting a joyful noise come forth. Notice, we are not commanded to make a “good noise” but only a “joyful noise.” Second, make this a habitual part of your everyday routine. And third, make sure you wisely select what music you allow to impact you. I think most of us can quote words to a song that we have not listened to in at least a couple decades and yet the words roll off our tongue like we have sung it daily. Many times the words of the songs we loved long ago we now have a level of shame that we ever sung those with such abandon. When in doubt, choose a song from God’s Word to impact your soul for His glory.

I would like to finish this blog off with the Psalm that my Father and I quoted from memory at my wedding. This Psalm clearly expounds on how we are to come before the Lord in harmonious rhythm. It is Psalm 100–

“Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Serve the Lord with gladness! Come into His presence with singing! Know that the Lord, He is God! It is He who made us and we are His, we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture. Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise! Give thanks to Him; bless His name! For the Lord is good; His steadfast love endures forever, and His faithfulness to all generations.”

Make sure you make it a priority to regularly make music to the Lord from your heart. It may very well result in setting you up for heart connection at the time you need it most.