Thursday, May 4, 2017
The Band Plays On
Speaking of bands and bandwagons, I'm with the Wallace's as Payton and Alexia compete in their regional speech and debate competitions. While I enjoy slipping into the rooms to hear and see them compete, I also enjoy judging other students in their various speech and debate categories. I am mesmerized by their talents and abilities. This is Regionals, so the best of the best are weeded out for Nationals.
I was so impressed by a Biographical Narrative speech I judged yesterday, that I knew it would be my inspiration for today's blog. This narrative was about Wallace Hartley. Does that name ring a bell for you? It didn't for me. I found out Hartley was a devoted Christian musician, having been raised in the Methodist Church, and his greatest claim-to-fame was that he was the Band leader for the Titanic. One of the survivors of the fateful loss of the Titanic, Charlotte Collyer, said of the band: “They kept it up to the very end. Only the engulfing ocean had power to drown them into silence. The band was playing ‘Nearer, My God, to Thee.’ I could hear it distinctly. The end was very close.” Eight musicians, led by Hartley heard one thing, "Play on." Those eight band members behaved with remarkable calm and courage and today they are remembered as heroes who could have joined other passengers on life boats because they were also considered civilians -- not Titanic employees, but they chose to be instruments of peace for those who were calmly led to the life boats or to the watery grave.
No words could have been more meaningful as the more they played, the nearer to God those band members came. And, they became heroes by putting others before themselves.
There was another who could have magnificently called ten thousand angels to rescue Him from the cross, but the music played on. The Creator of music continued to play as He went to the cross to bring redemption for you and me.
Oftentimes we don't have an easy way out of circumstances that we are in. We don't even see a lifeboat, helicopter or any other vessel to take us to safety. We have, however, an Orchestra Conductor that continues to play the background music for our lives. As long as that music continues to play, we have hope for today and tomorrow. As long as we, too, hear those words, "Nearer my God to Thee" and live those words....we'll find ourselves close to the Source of Music. In the meantime, "Let the band play on!"