Sing Along

Going to the gym is not among my favorite activities. It's not quite as far down on my list as having a root canal and shopping for bathing suits, but it's not something I look forward to. Still, I force myself, because I've reached the season of life where I can see the Great Migration looming on the horizon, and I'd like to put off the inevitable trip as long as possible. (What trip? The one where everything heads south for winter.)

One thing that makes the gym tolerable is loud music. I go through my routine with headphones in my ears and my iPod tucked in my pocket. There’s only one problem with that – I’m a singer. When a song I enjoy comes on, I unconsciously sing along. This can create some embarrassing situations. The other day I was totally into my routine, oblivious to my muscles’ complaints about the torture I was inflicting on them because my mind was too busy ‘firing all of my guns at once and exploding into space’ along with Steppenwolf. Until my husband tapped me on the shoulder, pulled an earbud from my ear, and whispered, “You’re making a spectacle of yourself.” I glanced around the room and, sure enough, I had the full attention of a dozen or so grinning gym rats. Embarrassed, I ducked my head and finished my workout with my teeth firmly set together.

On my way home afterward, I realized something. I’ve gone through some pretty tough circumstances in life over the years. There’s no way to avoid every stressful situation in life. There are some things you just have to force yourself to endure. In Psalm 3, David talked of being in a slimy pit of mud and mire. I’ve slogged through my share of muck, and I’ve discovered that music helps me in those situations, too. I’m not talking about literal music on my iPod – I’m talking about the music my Father plays for me. David said that God lifted him out of the pit and, “put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.” Where did He put that song? In David’s mouth. Sometimes we can’t just listen to the music. Now matter how foolish we look or how many stares we draw, we have to sing along. The louder, the better.