Have you ever wondered?

Have you ever wondered what your pastor does when nobody is in the church building? Besides removing bugs from the carpet in the entryway or cleaning the bathrooms, he may be praying for you, thinking through his sermon notes, or just meditating on some Scripture passage. But there are other times when the quietness of the sanctuary might be broken by him singing or playing music.

My well-used classical guitar was purchased for $25 at an antique store in Columbus, Ohio back in the 1990’s. It isn’t worth much but has accompanied quite a few songs over the past 25 years.

When I have unlocked the church doors and gotten everything ready, I usually take out my guitar and play through the sheet music in my guitar case. If you were to look through the mess of papers in there, you would find a hand written composition of O Holy Night put together by Bonnie St. John. It was written for four of us to play one Christmas in Mentor OH. That was a highlight of that Christmas holiday. Then there are copies of Xie Xie and Coffee Break in Dublin by Per-Olov Kindgren. The former is easy enough for me to play all the way through if nobody is listening. The latter is still waiting to be conquered. Then there is Bach’s beautiful Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring. This is one that I have recently started playing. It is difficult but might be doable with some more practice.

There is something about playing music in an empty church auditorium. Nobody is there. It gives me the opportunity to play without anyone hearing any mistakes. I kinda like that. So, if you see the light on in the auditorium when nobody else is around, don’t call the police. It’s probably just me trying to enjoy a few moments of quiet.