It May Fade in the Ears, but Never in the Heart

26 07 2020

Recently, thanks to my Lady, I’m now the owner of the guitar of my dreams–a Taylor onRock _n the professional level. I was no excited to get this new instrument, especially at this time in my life. At 66, my fingers don’t move like they used to, which at times makes it difficult to play. But this guitar is so smooth, it makes my fingers feel ten years younger. Of course, I want to show this beauty off to other musicians; they can appreciate how sweet it plays, so I’ve taken to several who like I, love it! One of my oldest and dearest friends lives in Ohio, so I had to make a special trip there so he could see it and take it for a spin. For over 50 years I’ve admired his ability to make a guitar sing and have been privileged to play 2nd fiddle, as they say, to this talented musician.  As my old friend worked his way up and down the fret board of the Taylor, he would say, “Wow, this is so smooth and easy to play.” I was happy that he loved it as much as I do. But then, he said something that nearly broke my heart. “I love this, just wish I could hear it.”

Over the course of life in a noisy occupation plus all the years playing loud music has taken a toll on his hearing. It first started out with minor problems, but as time went on, he couldn’t hear the music well enough to sing, another talent he was great at it. He can play beautifully by feel, but can’t really hear any of the notes. I knew of his problem, but in my excitement to show him my treasure had forgotten. Knowing how much he loves making music, but now not being able to hear is very hard on my friend, as it is on me as I hurt for him also. I put the guitar back in its case and we sat at the kitchen table reminiscing about the music we made in the early days and how beautiful it was. Time might have robbed him of his hearing, but his memory is keen and when he remembers the glory days, it’s good.

There’s a quote that goes like this; “When something bad happens, you have three choices. You can either let it define you, let it destroy you, or you can let it strengthen you.”

My friend is in good company when it comes to musicians that have suffered hearing loss; Neil Young, Ozzy Osbourne, Phil Collins, Brian Wilson, Eric Clapton, Pete Townshend. All these artists, as well as my friend, have something more in common than hearing loss. The music may have been made with their hands and voices that they no longer can hear well, but it’s still alive, well and strong in their minds, and their hearts.

I have found that same perseverance in Christians that have spent a lifetime serving the Lord. Their bodies may no longer allow them to serve the way they did for a lifetime, but in their hearts, they are still working and living for the God of Creation.  For this is a fact they all know.

2 Corinthians 4:17-18 “For our momentary light affliction is producing for us an absolutely incomparable eternal weight of glory. So, we do not focus on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

My buddy and I will still continue to pick guitars as long as our bodies will let us; it’s what we do and who we are. He may not be able to hear the music in his ears like he used to, but this “Traveler of the Rock Road” will always have the magic of music in his heart. Besides, I took the liberty of booking us a gig in 2023 so we have a lot of time to practice. Awesome!

See ya next time.


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