"DON’T LET THE SONG GO OUT OF YOUR LIFE"
Don’t let the song go out of your life
Though it chance sometimes to flow
In a minor strain; it will blend again
With the major tone you know.
What though shadows rise to obscure life’s skies,
And hide for a time the sun,
The sooner they’ll lift and reveal the rift,
If you let the melody run.
Don’t let the song go out of your life;
Though the voice may have lost its trill,
Though the tremulous note may die in your throat,
Let it sing in your spirit still.
Don’t let the song go out of your life;
Let it ring in the soul while here;
And when you go hence, ‘twill follow you thence,
And live on in another sphere.
How quickly and easily we can lose the song from our lives! Not only in times of grief at death and the experiencing of critical illness but other conditions enter our lives which bring feelings of devastation and heartbreak.
Psalm 137 vividly describes the children of Israel as they continued to wander in their captivity. How homesick they must have been! How they must have longed to be once again a free people able to live in one place in peace! They were so tired from their wanderings that when they stopped for rest they hung their harps on the willow trees. Perhaps there were times when they sang of their past and homeland. However, at this time when they were ordered by their captors to sing "the happy songs of Zion," they cried, "How can we sing in this foreign land?" Many years and more and more sad times would pass before they would be able to feel like singing their happy songs once more.
Have you ever come to a "foreign land" in your life? Did you find it difficult to sing your song? Especially your song of happier times?
Today many families must make moves and changes in location and lifestyle at crucial points in their lives. Children must change schools, going into new settings of many unknowns. They must leave their places and their crowds and be confronted with completely new groups. The songs which came easily among well known friends and environments escape. Becoming part of a new place requires time.
Some individuals look forward to the years of retirement only to find the days are long and empty, and adjusting to a nonscheduled and non-structured life is difficult. This change may also have brought about relocation in a new place or in a place which has changed tremendously since it was home years ago. Decreased income may also be a part of the change. The song grows faint. Much effort must go into making a new life and once again feeling a song in the heart.
The list of circumstances which may rob us of our song is long and varied — death of one we love, critical illness, family crisis, deception by friends, the cruelty of being ignored, disappointment in one we love, loss of employment or other changes in the work place, broken relationships. Each person could add their own personal robber. It isn’t wrong that we become depressed and despondent at these times. The error comes in permitting ourselves to remain so when help is available. Whatever may be taking the song out of our lives cannot separate us from God. He will sustain and bring joy in the morning after the night of tears.
When it seems our song will never return, God may lead us to another person or source of help or comfort. Joni Erickson Tada in The Glorious Intruder suggests, "If you’re hurting today, don’t immediately grab the phone to call a friend. Seek the everlasting arms of the Spirit. He is many things but most importantly to you today, He is your Comforter. He has a ready embrace.... You say it’s been a while since you’ve sensed that holy hug? Maybe it’s been a while since you’ve asked."
One of the greatest reasons to sing is to bring glory to God. We might remember:
Oh, let us rejoice in the Lord evermore,
When the darts of tempter are flying,
For Satan still dreads, as he did of yore,
Our singing much more than our sighing.
— Author Unknown
When evil forces take a Christian’s song, the influence of that one has been hurt and, much more importantly, God’s role in our lives has become questionable to others.
Recently late in the afternoon I heard the most beautiful song of a mockingbird. (Yes, to my amazement that clear tone came through with perfect clarity in spite of my hearing impairment.) I searched and located him on the highest perch of the housetop. He needed no audience. He was not being recorded. He was simply doing what God gave him to do —singing.
"Others may do greater work, but you have your own part to do and no one in all God’s heritage can do it as well as you." (Streams in the Desert)
Our song may escape us during the trials and darkness each life experiences. However, we find the truth in Hebrews 13:5: "I will never leave you nor forsake you," is more meaningful even then. We often come back from the dark valleys stronger than we went in.
Ours may be the only song someone hears. "Let us sing when we do not feel like it for thus we may give wings to leaden feet and turn weariness into strength." (J. H. Lovett)
When we can keep the song of truth and mercy in our hearts, we keep the song of joy and peace on our faces and in our lives
O Lord, why hast Thou brought this anguish upon me? How can I go on living day by day without the strengthening touch of this one whom I loved so much? Was it wrong for me to love him so? Did I try to possess him for myself? Yet Thou didst give him to me to love and Thou didst let him love me. Now Thou has taken him back to Thyself! Why, 0 Lord? Why, when there might have been so many years of usefulness and when he was so loved by everyone?
Surely Thy ways are good and Thou knowest what is best for all Thy children. I can see how this might be best for him — no more sorrow or worry or pain. Many things weighed down on him, and now he is happy forever with Thee. Yet how is this best for me, 0 Lord, and for these others who needed him too? What shall we do without him?
O Lord, forgive my selfishness! Forgive me for thinking about myself and wishing him back just for my own sake! Thank you, 0 God, for letting me know him this long. Thank you for the strength of our love, yes, O Lord, even though it hurts so much more just now. Thank you for the quality of his faith in Christ, for his concern to be more Christian in his life, for his desire to help others along the way.
O Lord, give me strength that I may strengthen these others! Let me act in such a way that he would be proud of me. 0 Lord, what Thou hast given me through him shall live in me and in these loved ones who remain — until I see him again, with Thee, in heaven. Thou canst make it to be so, 0 Lord! Thank Thee for having heard my prayer, in Jesus name Amen.
— The Upper Room
Some more questions we are frequently asked along with the answers are listed below for the benefit of those who have not dealt directly with our services at Waller Funeral Home.
How much does a funeral cost? Cost is based on the price of the casket, outer container (if any), and services, selected. An itemized bill is provided and questions about charges are encouraged as plans are discussed.
Should we have the funeral service in the funeral home chapel or in the church of the deceased? We think the atmosphere of the chapel is as suitable as a church. We are proud of our sound and music system. We realize, however, that sometimes families prefer a church because of location, size, sentiment, or other factors. The family decides on their preference and we adapt to the location they choose
We dedicate this issue of SEASONS to those who have died and whose families we have served from February 27, 1990 to April 30, 1990.
Mr. William Doyle Roberts, Sr. 2/27/90
Mrs. Mellye Grace Pettit 2/28/90
Mrs. Margaret Gladys Morrison 2/28/90
Mr. Guy Taylor McLarty 3/6/90
Mrs. Jennie Euretta Welch 3/7/90
Mrs. Nancy Velma Sweany 3/8/90
Mrs. Lillian Waller Crowe 3/8/90
Mrs. Connie Mae Baggett 3/11/90
Mrs. Frances Markette Dulin 3/14/90
Mrs. Corinne Fletchall Callaway 3/17/90
Mr. Bishop Callahan 3/20/90
Mrs. Bessie Wimberly Bennett 3/21/90
Mr. Orlyn Harkin Brummett 3/22/90
Mr. Claude Lee Hollowell 3/24/90
Mr. James Maulton Britt 3/28/90
Mr. Doyle Quitmon Ivy 3/28/90
Mr. T. Vance Edwards 3/29/90
Mrs. Carrie Christine Styers 4/3/90
Mr. Morris Hartley 4/4/90
Mrs. Mollie McLarty Patton 4/8/90
Mr. Myron Laudric Odom, Sr. 4/9/90
Mrs. Ethel Louise Fox 4/15/90
Mr. James Burton Taylor 4/16/90
Mrs. Ada Fuller Franklin 4/16/90
Mrs. Katherine Thompson Andrews 4/17/90
Mr. James Flem Mize 4/19/90
Mr. W. Preston "Jack" Franklin 4/22/90
Mr. Lavert Wayne Hill 4/24/90
Ms. Katherine Ratliff Miller 4/24/90
Mr. Yuba Finn Knight 4/27/90
Mr. James A. Hollowell 4/27/90
Mr. Charles Fleming Ables 4/28/90
Mr. Lawrence Raymond Carroll 4/30/90
The following poem is included in this issue of Seasons because soon we will observe Mother’s Day and in early June, Father’s Day, holidays which cause us to give extra attention to the importance of our parents.
I know what mother’s face is like, Though it I cannot see:
It’s like the music of a bell, It’s like the way the roses smell,
It’s like the stories fairies tell —It’s all of these to me.
I know what father’s face is like, I am sure I know it all:
It’s like his whistle in the air, It’s like his step upon the stair,
It’s like his arms that take much care,
And never let me fall.
And so I know what God is like, The God whom no one sees:
He’s everything my mother means, He’s like my very sweetest dreams—
He’s everything my father seems, But greater than all of these.
— Author Unknown
(Since the author is unknown and nothing is known of the origin of the poem, we are left to ponder the circumstances of the writer. PW.)
"I’m so glad I’ve finally done it!"
Forthright expressions, such as this, are common following the pre-arrangement of one’s funeral service.., a thoughtful act that demonstrates love and consideration for others. And, the presence of a family member or friend during the pre-arrangement can heighten the feelings of accomplishment.
We invite you to learn more about the considerate advantages of pre-planning and funding the funeral service. Our pre-arrangement literature will be helpful to you, and those close to you. In quiet privacy we shall be pleased to provide informed counsel and attentive answers to your questions concerning pre-arrangement.