Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My Current Short Story

All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.
Edmund Burke

Perhaps my life may be more of a set of short stories than a full-blown novel. So here's a little bit about the story I'm currently writing.

The world is getting smaller and smaller and as the world shrinks, or flattens as some economists refer to it, more and more people, especially of my generation, are able to experience more and varied cultures. I have had the opportunity to travel a great deal, thanks to the open minds (and wallets) of my parents, and a great deal to my profession. I am a professional musician and I am learning every day just how many doors music, high-quality music, can open that are generally closed ... like China.

Several of my friends and I have started and are in the midst of birthing an international conductorless chamber orchestra called The Halo Ensemble. Basically, young people who are classically-trained musicians from around the world (i.e. Switzerland, Finland, Scotland, Canada, U.S.A., & Austria) are gathering together and playing concerts without a conductor. For those of us that are in the Church, it can seem like a very shallow calling compared to say ... full-time missionaries in Africa, but we feel our souls very much alive in this venture. And souls which are alive are the best flame to enlighten other souls through the Spirit.

Last summer our story setting was in Finland, among other places - a country plagued by apathy. We saw and heard through our concerts souls which had been shrouded by clouds of darkness, doubt, apathy, disbelief having the veils lifted and beginning to dare to feel the full weight of God's love on them. This summer we have returned to Finland to see how those hearts are faring, and to see what else God will do for them in our playing.

Our story is one of magic and mundane. We are nothing particularly special as individuals and we are doing nothing particularly extraordinary. I am reminded of Mother Theresa saying
There are no extraordinary acts; only ordinary acts done with extraordinary love.
And that's all we have to offer: extraordinary love, because it comes from Christ, the author and perfecter of faith and love.

But as a founding member of the ensemble, I know we have a great story of God's Grace to tell, in and through our ensemble. I love thinking about what other stories I could hear and tell at a conference like Donald Miller's. Being able to share that unadulterated time with other motivated people filled with extraordinary love, hearing their stories, sharing the stories of the Halo Ensemble, seeing how our stories overlap or how we can speak into each other's stories ... I can't really fathom what would come of it, but I imagine marvelous things. To hear Don's stories of starting and sticking with The Mentoring Project, can encourage and direct the path of this story I'm in now.

In Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott, she says
There are probably a number of ways to tell your story right, and someone else may be able to tell you whether or not you've found one of these ways.
I envision this happening at the Living a Better Story seminar.

Here's a short video from Donald Miller about the seminar:

Living a Better Story Seminar from All Things Converge Podcast on Vimeo.

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