Home Forums Noticings… 200415 – New Strings

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    April 15, 2020
    I put new strings on my beautiful Taylor acoustic guitar last night. It was one of those jobs that I had kept putting off. It wasn’t because the job is unpleasant. Changing guitar strings is a bit of a chore but it’s not complicated. And it wasn’t because I didn’t want new strings on – I did. And it wasn’t because I didn’t have a set of strings waiting – I did. Frankly, I think the reason I waited so long was because that guitar is such a wonderful instrument that even with tired, old strings on it it still sounded quite nice.

    When you first change guitar strings it takes a while for them to stretch and get used to being under so much tension, so they tend to go out of tune a lot in the first little while. I changed them in the late afternoon – strummed a while – retuned several times – and then went off to dinner. When I went back in the evening the strings had settled in, and I have to say, the guitar sounds incredible! It has that same sparkle and singing quality that made me fall in love with it in the first place. The harmonies rang out purer, the low notes boomed just like they’re supposed to, and the music just soars out of her. It’s like she’s been reborn!

    You see, it wasn’t that the guitar was awful, or unworthy, or faulty, or damaged in any way. It had just gotten worn down a bit through day to day life – but it still made very nice music. It was always a great guitar, but I had forgotten how truly, truly lovely it could sing when in tune and refreshed. When those new strings started to vibrate, it was like a whole new instrument – renewed, reinvigorated, revitalized, reborn – resurrected!

    And I didn’t have to move a mountain to receive that gift. I just had to invest the time and care to open myself to the possibility that letting go of what was and embracing the new would result in even more beauty and blessing than I had dreamed of. Needless to say, those strings didn’t change themselves. My attention and intention were needed to help the transformation happen.

    Surely you’ve guessed that this is a metaphor – and you are the guitar – and the Presence and Love of God are your new strings. You aren’t damaged, or unworthy, or faulty – but you might be a bit worn down. Who isn’t these days?! And you may be reluctant to really let yourself be embraced by God’s unfailing and unfathomable love because you’re doing pretty good, and you can get by, and things will be ok, and well, it just seems like a lot of effort maybe.

    Trust me – it’s worth the effort. It’s worth the opening. The music really is that much sweeter after the transformation. Happy Easter.

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