I pretty much attend the school “Fame” was based off of.
At Belmont (located in the heart of Music City, USA) — talent is everywhere and it’s pretty common to hear music being played, practiced, and perfected in every last corner on campus. That being said, I didn’t expect much more than lovely music when my friend Brenna asked me to listen to her fiddle piece for her seminar the next day. It was a little blues number she’d be duet-ing along to her brother’s bluegrassy guitar playing, all details she explained to me before going on with her solo.
Despite the explanation, however, I was struck by how empty moments of her song felt. It was a wonderful solo… skillfully played… but something was missing. And in a way, that took away from it’s beauty.
When she finished, she played it again, only this time over a voice memo of her brother’s guitar part (PTL for modern technology!). Suddenly — it all made sense. And it was beautiful. I mean really and truly full of beauty. His low ends accentuated her highs and the subtle dissonance between their pitches married together in perfect harmony. The blues and grass mixed together just right… and left me in chills.
And it hit me — just like that guitar and violin — we were made for community.
Our love, in the context of others, creates something beautiful.
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God … This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. (1 John 4:7a, 9-12)
Like two instruments coming together to make music far more beautiful as a whole — we as people weren’t meant to do this alone. We weren’t meant to live alone, feel alone, love alone. We CAN’T love alone.
Love is demonstrated in community.
I mean, genuine, life-giving, uplifting, no-time-to-let-the-little-stuff-mess-you-up community. And that is a difficult task! It is so easy to let little drama, miscommunication, and passive aggressiveness get in the way of this, but we have to remember: the way you and your friends treat one another is to be a direct reflection of how Jesus treated you! He is the standard. Look to Him, look to Him, look to Him.
When I’m stuck on how to be more like Jesus in my relationships, it usually comes down to humility. I go to Philippians 2:5-11 for this wisdom on this time and time again.
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
Pray this passage upon your heart and your relationships, that you would have the same mindset as Christ Jesus. Ask God to reveal to you the places where you need more of Christ’s love and humility and He will show them to you. And above all, ask for the Holy Spirit to help you in this feat — He is our Helper and it is his delight to do so.
“but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”
May our love for those around us unite with God’s, like violin and guitar, like melody and harmony being made complete.
And just like the Belmont musicians, filling every corner of campus with their tunes, may the beautiful music of His love fill the halls of wherever you go and the hearts of whoever you see.
- Mele // @melegirma