More things are wrought by prayer
Than this world dreams of. Wherefore, let thy voice
Rise like a fountain for me night and day.
For what are men better than sheep or goats,
That nourish a blind life within the brain,
If, knowing God, they lift not hands of prayer
Both for themselves and those who call them friend?
For so the whole round earth is every way
Bound by gold chains about the feet of God.-Tennyson
Webster’s 1828 dictionary defines concert as:
1. Agreement of two or more in a design or plan; union formed by mutual communication of opinions and views; accordance in a scheme; harmony.
2. A number or company of musicians, playing or singing the same piece of music at the same time; or the music of a company of players or singers, or of both united.
3. A singing in company.
4. Accordance; harmony.
How you ask does a concert relate to prayer? Well for starters – look at the definition. I am going to try to figure this out as I go and for now will focus first on #1/4 which are the same. We’ll save the musical portion for later.
Driving home from the northern part of the state one day I was seeking God with a fervency to answer some of those questions that plague me constantly about where I am. His answer to me was “GIVE ME a concert of prayer”. I am pretty dense at times and even though I thought I knew, I didn’t understand. It has taken me weeks to get to this point today of some glimmer of understanding what He meant. He speaks so simply at times and we make it so hard.
“Agreement of two or more in a design or plan; union formed by mutual
communication of opinions and views; accordance in a scheme; harmony. This brought to mind
Mat 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst
of them.” Where two or three are gathered; that’s a concert, right? Can a concert be just one? Well of course it can, but……
Ringing in my ears and my mind and my heart are “GIVE ME a concert of prayer”. What does that mean Lord, how do I give that? I fully understand that Matthew 6 instructs us to go into our room, shut the door and pray……. Is that what you mean? I fully understand I can pray at any time or any place by myself or with others. That wasn’t the problem. The problem was the phrase. GIVE ME a concert of prayer!
My mind could only focus on one thing with the word concert. That had to do with music and a small fellowship group I used to be in that often in the beginning of our gatherings would send up the sweetest of incense to God in our prayer and worship time. At least to me it seemed that way. So focusing on the group aspect in respect to the word concert was automatically where my focus began. Oh, but that is not what He had in mind. So next I turned to the musical definition of the word concert. (Just a brief aside here, several years ago the Lord instructed me to start looking up definitions of words because quite often they mean more or less, or quite frankly, something truly different than what we think.)
I love music. All kinds of music. When I was a child my mother forced me to take piano lessons. I took them for 9 years and taught to beginners for two years. I was quite accomplished in some respects, but I wasn’t gifted by any means. I could play a mean piece of music as long as I had the notes in front of me. I knew what a concert was.
A few years back I wanted so badly to play with the worship team, but I was what Bob Sorge called a “copiest”. I’ll briefly explain. He defines a copiest as one who plays the printed music. He defines a pianist as one who plays their heart. (My words for his descriptions.) Quite simply, I was a copiest. I couldn’t play chords, I couldn’t play from a lead sheet, I couldn’t hear what was in my heart – get my drift. Oh I could play. I could play beautifully from the printed music. I prayed so often to be able to play worship music songs. God heard my prayers and answered but in a way I was truly unprepared for. He released in my hands a sound unknown to me before. To me it was as if He took my hands to heaven and filled them with song. Unlike Terry MacAlmon’s Sound of Heaven, unlike the worship team sound; It was as if He opened my heart to hear His sound. At the same time I would become a struggler in reading music. Now I would define myself as a pianist, not a copiest. Go figure.
So now I am connecting some dots. He uses my hands in prayer to commune with Him, whether two or three or gathered or if I am alone. My hands seem to come in accordance; harmony, with His will. A union is formed by mutual communication of views: my loving and worshiping Him and seeking His will and He in turn loving me and revealing His will for me.
As I stated in my very first post, “I start this knowing prayer is the beginning and the end. It is my love for Him, my obedience to Him and my communion with Him.” There, my friend, is the concert of prayer. Love, obedience, communion. Aahhhhh – sweet harmony.
Perfect prayer is only another name for love.-Fenelon