Yesterday, not too long after arriving in the patient’s cardiac ICU room, he was telling me about his love of ministering in a local nursing home and using music to bring a smile to otherwise lonely people. As he told me his story, his own countenance brightened. I can only imagine him singing and leading those dear folks in song, especially the ones about heaven!
Many times over the years, Denise and I have had the joy of ministering by the bedside of a dear loved one or precious church member in the hospital or their home. In recent years, we have often ended our visit by singing a hymn or gospel song. I remember once, a dear lady who was in the ER struggling to get her breath, and we began to sing very softly, “When peace like a river attendeth my way. When sorrows like sea billows roll . . . .” Later on we sang, “We have a heavenly Father above. With eyes full of mercy and a heart full of love. He really cares when your head is bowed low. . . . “ As we moved through those songs and on to others, there was a certain calmness that came over the room.
In the midst of their battles with cancer, my parents loved to hear the songs of the redeemed. We often played a CD of invitation hymns that ministered to my dad’s soul in a very special way. For my mom, a dear family in our church provided an iPod for her to listen to the piano music of Rudy Atwood as well as some of her other favorites. In the wee morning hours, sometimes, there would be Mom fixing her ear buds so she hear the songs of grace and promise. That was new fangled gadget for her! J
Today, this week, be a blessing to a downcast, hurting soul. Give them a CD or an iTunes card. When you stand to sing in church, do so joyfully so the folks around who may need encouragement will be uplifted as you sing from your heart to the Lord!
Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands!
2 Serve the Lord with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing.
3 Know that the Lord, He is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;[a]
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
4 Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
5 For the Lord is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.
Ephesians 5:19 – Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord