CPC Stories is a time during our Sunday worship service when we can hear from each other about what God is doing in our hearts and in our midst as a church body. This past Sunday, Melissa Lander shared with us the story of God’s faithfulness in her life as reflected in her journey as a musician and her passion for music. She encouraged us to trust that God’s plan will transform our lives. Thank you, Melissa, for reminding us that God works in His perfect timing and that Christ in us is a very real and tangible presence. Melissa’s CPC Stories is included here in its entirety.
The Tempo of Transformation, in Four Movements
We begin our adult lives with a vision of how life might turn out. So we begin as composers do, creating rhythms and themes involving work and relationships.
The first pages of my composition begin with a robust flair, as in the opening page of Beethoven’s 5th symphony, Ba, Ba, Ba, Bum…
Fortunate education, disciplined practice and a lucky audition win propelled me into a successful career in music, which left me with probably zero trace of humility. In my late 20’s I met my husband and became a Christian. We wasted no time and in 3 ½ years had 3 beautiful children, at which time my professional musical life came to a screeching, Wagnerian worthy cymbal crash halt.
As in an interesting opera twist, this was my own doing. I quit my job to be a stay at home mom. I didn’t want to travel 100+ days a year and miss my children’s youth. But the days AND years seemed long, God felt far away, and what I thought was a desire to homeschool, God kept shooting down. Six years into this achingly beautiful movement, I was clinically depressed.
But in God’s perfect timing, a CPC brother and former co-worker invited me to teach one night a week, which I adamantly accepted, even if it was just to ‘get out of the house.’ I quickly realized though, I was rediscovering a huge part of God’s purpose for my life. My composition was finally transitioning, and a new movement was about to emerge.
This movement begins in a brisk waltz tempo, an intricate dance of balancing a busy household of 3 elementary school aged children, with returning to school myself, and staying up into the wee hours of the night to practice, and study.
God’s presence began to feel very real to me during this time. Despite what seemed to be a Herculean feat by many, the ease and joy with which I flowed through the days, had me feeling secure this WAS God’s path for me,
In standard Symphonic form, the fourth movement is typically fast and hurried, which is a perfect description of how life seems to be passing us by these days. Our oldest just attended her first homecoming last night and my son grew taller than me over the summer.
But the 4th movement also brings back previous themes, both major and minor, including being able to homeschool my youngest daughter, but also struggling with humility and how music plays a different role in my life, now that I’m a Christian. Our brother Tim Flora was one of the first to teach me, yet not I, but through Christ in me.
God has blessed me with the desires of my heart in ways I could have never anticipated. My prayer for you is that whatever movement your life happens to be in, whether the tempo feels fast or slow, you are able to TRUST that God’s plan will transform your life into an intricately beautiful symphony.