In living our faith, practice makes perfect


While there is no scriptural proof that St. Paul ever played the organ, I think he can relate to what happened to me. (Brief recap, I have an injured right hand and nerve damage to fingers. No big deal, but necessary to know for understanding this blog.)

Just recently I had finished redoing my office and could actually make my way to the organ and decided to give it a try, the first post-injury. Never a concert-level musician, I nevertheless enjoy playing the organ just for myself. Really for myself, since Sparky most seriously and loudly lets his objections be known whenever I tickle the ivories and Husband somehow tends not to be around. I placed my hands on the keys and started to play a familiar song.

It was just so weird.  My fingers on the left hand cooperated, but those injured ones — well, the only way I can describe it is they acted like little boys out to defy the teacher. They would NOT go where my brain was telling them to go. They just jumped around, as if to say well, she can tell us what to do, but she sure can’t make us! I was flabbergasted!

My physical therapist says the musical debacle happened because the nerves in my hand are not, in fact, getting clear instructions from the brain and that’s why we have to keep working on re-training them.  


I was discouraged. That’s when I thought of St. Paul who also had trouble following through on what his head directed, for it is written, “For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing that I hate.”  Don’t we all? And not just in trivial pursuits such as playing some music.

I have been lax in more than the music department. It has been too easy lately to continue reading the murder mystery for those last few minutes before sleep, instead of picking up my book of night prayers. I point out people’s faults when I have vowed to be silent. I, too, do not what I want, but the very opposite.  People don’t change so much in 2,000 years. What to do?

We are told that, with God, all things are possible. I keep practicing. I try to make prayer a priority.  I shut my mouth and open my ears, just a little more. I ask God’s help.

Paul also tells us that Jesus has given us “everlasting encouragement and good hope through his grace.”

I keep trying, God.

The song for today’s practice is “We shall overcome.”  Someday.


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