Who’s singing lead?
By Janel Breitenstein
Recently, when singing with a band, I scrawled “4 inches” all over my sheet music.
I’m a backup vocalist, see. Rather than my lips brushing the mic, the entire mix sounds better when I’m four inches away. Otherwise, I obliterate the melody. Any sound engineer will tell you a sound that grabs your heart out of your chest involves just the right volume of each component.
But it’s just so easy to get out of order. (Like the rest of life.)
Take marriage. With fingers spinning through the radio stations, you’d think falling in love is amazing enough to retrieve one from bankruptcy, cure liver failure, and absolve the world of all corrupt dictatorships.
Throw to the wind morning breath, those boogers he wipes under the seat of the car, and her propensity to spend precisely three times the grocery budget. Love is where it’s at.
So if you actually find that holiest of grails, it would be tempting to guard the love of your life like a pitbull; to put love and marriage and your spouse first. But whatever is first in our lives is where our allegiance lies. It informs our every decision and desire. It “sings lead” over every life category.
Our default voice in every mix—unless we deliberately overthrow it—will be ourselves and our passions. John Calvin famously wrote that we are “idol-making factories,” constantly manufacturing something for our hearts to bow to: We exchange the truth about God for a lie and worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator (Romans 1:25).
Ironically, in order to love my husband best, he needs to know I love God first—that God sings lead over all.
Rather than sounding second rate, the rest of the band suddenly falls into place. Each of us will love each other with a fuller, more harmonious, Christ-like love when intimacy with God leads the band.
Action points: How can you encourage each other to allow God to “sing lead”?
- Keep each other accountable for being in God’s Word. Ask each other what you’re learning about God.
- Go on a weekly walk to share prayers you’ve seen God answer and the ones you’re still waiting on. Texting these works great as a constant reminder.
- Spend time individually, then together confessing any misarranged loves in your life. Ask the Lord to help you want to put Him first, even above each other.
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