I sing for church every Sunday night. Next to writing, it has become my best therapy.
Do they know why I sing? I can see Shawn from where I stand in the musician’s section. Not the physical Shawn I once knew, but his spirit I recognize. The window in the back of church faces towards his grave with a statue of Christ standing arms open wide inviting me to trust and sing stronger.
I sing my best since Shawn died because I am no longer afraid of what I can lose.
Our Mass begins in the evening hours and I imagine my voice carrying out to meet Shawn on the other side of time somewhere between my worship and his union with Jesus. I feel his presence in my life, a spiritual connection that can not die. I sometimes hear him singing with me. I imagine each Sunday night at 5:30 he is prompt to attend the event and his soul is present to listen. I sing to his soul.
After late night practices I walk to my car in the dark and often whisper to myself, “I sing for you, Shawn.” I continue in a hushed voice that only I can hear, “I sing for the love I know is true. The love you taught me and the love that God continues to pour over my life. I worship the same God as you and offer our God every ounce of praise inside of me. I come to our house of worship knowing that you have been invited to His table earlier than we ever expected, yet blessed beyond measure that you now share in God’s banquet. In awe and complete surrender, I am trusting God’s timing; His ordained schedule. And most of all I am struck with admiration of a faith that carries me along even though you were taken from me.”
During our service, I am filled with joy as the music moves through me. It is the one guaranteed time in my week that I experience the same happiness I had before Shawn died. Authentic happiness appears in the music and I am drawn into its healing power; an amazing tool God is using on me.
The songs pierce inside me with truth. Many of them written by broken people with broken stories sharing a message of hope and worth with other broken hearts; inviting those who hear these words to know they are beckoned by God to a life of love.
I sing my best in the late hours of the night. I sing even better at the church where we were married and grew in love. I sing my best since Shawn died.