The Church Organ


"(God) sees everything under the heavens." (Job 28:24 NIV)

One of my favorite pastimes while at the seminary I attended in France was to play the church organ. As the student representative for the church's bookstore, I had a key to the church, and often, in the evening when no one was around, I would sneak in and play to my heart's content. All my life I had dreamed of being able to play this instrument, but never, until now, had I been given the opportunity.

I began as a completely unschooled organ player, and the sounds I produced were far from any that would bring enjoyment. In fact, even the church rats would vacate the premises whenever I played. But bit by bit I was able to play some basic hymns, and to my surprise, one day I was asked to play the piano for worship!

"But I can only play a few hymns," I protested. "I don't play well at all."

"I know you can do it," insisted the worship coordinator.

"Isn't there someone else who could play better than me?" I asked.

"I've heard you play the organ," was her reply. "You play quite well enough!"

Where and when had SHE heard ME play? No one was ever there when I practiced!

Or was there?

It was around this same time that a friend of mine, who had been working for the Calvin Chapel in Geneva, asked me if I would like to take over his job for the day. I jumped at the opportunity. After all, the Calvin Chapel had a terrific organ. If I finished working early enough, maybe I could play it!

I hurried through my tasks on that first day, and when five o'clock rolled around, I eagerly closed the chapel doors. All alone, I sat down on the organ bench. Now would be my opportunity! Turning the organ on, I started to play one of the hymns I had taught myself. To my chagrin, someone applauded!

I jumped around, my face turning pale. The chapel door was wide open, though I knew I had locked it. That could only mean that the one who was applauding me was someone with a key-someone in charge! Now I was in trouble!

To my amazement, he encouraged me to continue. I didn't, though. I was too uptight at having been caught red-handed! Besides, I needed to get back to the seminary before the cafeteria closed for the evening. Instead, I thanked him profusely and wished him a blessed evening.

Reflecting on this experience, I now realize that none of our actions can be hidden. We may be able to fool some people; We may even be able to fool most people; but we can never fool God. He sees everything we do. We need to ask ourselves: Am I doing this for the glory of God or to please myself? Our motto should become: What would Jesus do if He was in my place? Then our actions would become more geared towards helping others, and selfishness would soon evaporate out of our lives. We would welcome the guidance of God's Holy Spirit's and we would live our lives to the glory of God.

What will be your choice? Is anyone around?

Rob Chaffart

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