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There is a line in the classic pop song “American Pie” that talks about “the day the music died.”  The reference is to February 3rd, 1959 when Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and “The Big Bopper” J. P. Richardson were killed in a plane crash. That line in the song always gets me as I try to imagine a world without music.

Although not all of us love music, or enjoy singing, our lives usually have a soundtrack attached to it. What songs do you identify with? What kind of music moves you? What songs do you relate to certain times in your life?

Every time I hear the hymn “Will Your Anchor Hold”, I think of my father because that hymn is the anthem of The Boy’s Brigade movement in the United Kingdom, and that movement was very much part of his life and faith as a boy and teenager, and later as a B.B. Chaplain. We sang it at his funeral. It is part of the soundtrack of my life, as are the songs of the late Vera Lynn, the Forces Sweetheart, which my dad brought home from his six years of service in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War.

I can never hear the hymn “Love Divine, all loves excelling” without hearing my mum playing it on the piano as she sang it with her beautiful soprano voice. My heart is stirred every time I hear it sung at worship.

I could give other examples, but there are so many to choose from, so I’ll stop here. All are the soundtrack of my life, including the traditional songs of Scotland, (the land of my birth), Sunday School songs, majestic hymns, and contemporary Christian music (that express my faith), Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture and Gustav Holst “Planet Suite” (that express my love of classical music) the Beatles and the music of the 1960’s (from my formative years) country music (from my years in Western Canada), and other miscellaneous tunes I have picked up along the way (showing my eclectic musical tastes).

I hope we would all agree that our lives would be much poorer without music. Our culture, our celebrations, our times of trial and triumph, our patriotism - every aspect of our daily living and the heights and depths of our faith - all include and embrace some kind of musical expression. 

In recent years, the soundtrack of my life has expanded, as it should! It now includes newer hymns of faith. I have reasons for adding them all to my personal soundtrack, but I won’t go into those. I’ll just share them with you. They will probably be new to most of you, so here are the YouTube links for them. I invite you simply to listen and enjoy them as my gift to you.

We Remember

Be Not Afraid

When It’s All Been Said and Done

The Journey

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