I can't remember a day in my life where I haven't sang, even for just a few minutes. I sing in the car, shower, with E, while cleaning, while cooking,... It's just something I've always been passionate about. I definitely wouldn't consider myself a professional, but I am trained. I have had vocal lessons from several different instructors and have been a part of several music groups throughout my life.
I'm not sure what happened, but one day I stopped singing in public. Criticism came where I least expected it, I guess, and it blew my confidence. Fear set in and I just didn't think I could get sing in front of anyone anymore. The excuses came and were pretty much unlimited. And then God placed our family in an incredible church where people appreciate us and love on us on a daily basis. Not long after being in that church, I felt God working on my heart and in my life. I felt called to sing again, to use the talent God has given me.
Of course, I kept getting in the way and letting fear control me. I made excuse after excuse and had a constant battle in my mind. I'd convince myself that I shouldn't, go to church, and the preacher would be talking about something the Bible says that made me realize that I needed to get over this.
After wrestling for 10 months, I finally picked a song and practiced with the worship leader. I can't even begin to describe what that did for me, how it healed a part of me that I didn't realize was broken. That night the thoughts crept in again about how I couldn't do this and I would make a fool of myself, so I decided it was time. There is no more waiting. God is calling me to use my talent and I need to just suck it up and get over it. So I'm singing the special on Sunday and the worship leader is singing background vocals for me. Craziness.
I know that this is a little silly, but don't we all do this? Whether it's speaking up about an issue to a friend or stranger, using a talent that you forgot about, or reviving a part of you that has been subdued for a long time, we all have something that we've let slip away. Something that is important to us that no one else may understand. I challenge you to speak up, to use your talent, to be yourself, to do the thing that you know is necessary but fear has taken over. Today...This week. Not Tomorrow or Next Week.