Well, we made it! Chancel Choir ended the season with a wonderful choral/brass celebration and the Wednesday choir kids all moved up to the next stage. Kindergarteners are now going to be the “old pros” in His Kids; Joysong 3rd graders move into GNG and the 2nd graders become the “seniors” of JoySong. GNG kids move up a grade, and then…..and then…..
There are the 8th graders and the most fearful word of all: AUDITIONS.
8th graders leaving GNG are lining up in droves to audition for Bel Canto. They make an appointment, they bring their parents, they stand in front of the big black piano and sing. And then – even more terrifying than singing in front of your parents AND Mr. Dean! – they have to explain WHY they want to be in Bel Canto.
It makes me smile. A really, really big smile.
It will take them a month, maybe two, before they realize where they really are. They think they are in a high-stress situation, on a highwire hundreds of feet above a yawning chasm of hungry crocodiles. But where they actually are is right smack dab in the middle of a family of very kind, very loving folks who want nothing more than to lift them up, put them strong on their feet and shine a big light of acceptance on them, in which they can laugh, and dance, and sing, and be completely themselves.
Mr. Dean is no crocodile. Bel Canto is no alien land. They will learn this when they experience a rehearsal where everyone is laughing straight out loud, the crocodile and the aliens alike. And they will wonder what the heck they were ever afraid of.
This is a place where the best audition sets you in the middle of people who will teach, uphold, encourage, challenge, befriend, support, and carry you.
Which is exactly where you are when you give the worst audition.
Kids, listen up. It’s all about growing. And I’m talking to all kids, too, not just the ones between five and eighteen. You kids between the ages of nineteen and ninety, I’m talking to you, too. It’s all about Jesus and you, singing and breathing and living together in a wonderful place full of people who make you nervous, crazy, excited, intimidated and exasperated, usually at the same time you also are making them nervous, crazy, excited, intimidated, and exasperated. We are all in audition mode, every one, not realizing we are already in. We made it. We are here.
Right where we should be.