The Upper Room devotional reflection for Friday, January 27, 2023, was written by Peter Caligiuri of Florida.
1 O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth. 2 Sing to the Lord, bless his name; tell of his salvation from day to day. 3 Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples.
Psalm 96:1-3 NRSV
I have been playing the guitar for more than 50 years. I especially enjoy playing alone on a Sunday afternoon. It is almost like playing with my fingers. But every three months or so, no matter how much I tune them, the strings begin to sound tired and flat. Then I must do one of my least favorite tasks: change the guitar strings. I slowly unwind and throw away the old strings. I painstakingly tighten the new ones to their proper tension, adjusting them until they are properly tuned. It’s a lot of trouble, but with new strings even the plainest melody rings with beauty.
I have discovered that sometimes God works in me the same way. When my life has gotten out of tune, God sits me down and starts changing my strings. God unwinds my attitudes and goals that have a selfish sharp sound and gently leads me to repentance. Next, God puts on the new strings, tightening them until the grace notes of Jesus Christ can be heard again in my heart. When the Great Musician sits down to play the beautiful melodies of life in me again – oh, what joy!
We have a beautiful Estonia piano in our sanctuary. It is a wonderfully crafted instrument that has offered us hours upon hours of amazing music. Yet, from time to time it needs to be tuned. To the untrained ear, it may sound the same, but a trained musician is able to hear and feel the difference.
Peter’s reflection reminds us that maturing people of faith consistently need to have their spiritual lives retuned that we might continue to produce the harmonies of heaven. Restringing a guitar or tuning a piano takes time and expertise, the tuner needs to know the right amount of tension to produce the desire sound. Likewise, our creator knows how to restring our hearts and tune our minds so that we generate sounds of grace. I invite you to take the time to allow God to strip away the mistuned strings of our heart and mind.
Father God, forgive us when our decisions do not follow your will. Tune our hearts to sing the songs of heaven today. Amen.
- Peter Caligiuri