I went to band camp…for one year. My brother and I had received scholarships for a free year of band camp, but it was our first and last experience. I remember how disorganized I felt, because I didn’t have any “solo” pieces memorized, I couldn’t play the scales that they required, and I didn’t fit in with anyone around me. In fact, I sat next to a girl, during one of the rehearsals, who said that she had a music stand that was specifically designed for a cellist. They MAKE those?! I think she was lying, but I didn’t know the difference anyway.
The most humiliating part of the entire experience, however, was sitting last chair in the cello section of the orchestra. For those of you that don’t know what that means, it means that I was the last kid picked for the team. I was the one that they had to squeeze in somewhere, because there was nowhere else to put me.
Although we had an amazing brass section behind me (I know this, because they made me deaf during the concert), I was glad to get the experience over with. I look back upon that summer and realize that it taught me something very important: I’m not the best.
During this period for Lent, I’ve really been trying to focus my attention on the cross, remembering that every one of my actions is a symbol of Christ living in and through me. So, when it comes to those instances in which I want to be the best, I have to stop myself and think about the cross. Jesus put it very aptly, “…Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all” (Mark 10:43-44).
So, it’s no longer about how good or bad or whatever I am. It’s about what can be accomplished for the cause of Christ. As I remember back to that last-place chair in the orchestra, I am also reminded that playing second-fiddle in life isn’t a bad gig – it’s required! I hope that you will take some time as you prepare for Easter to examine your life and what Christ can do through your heart. You have an amazing opportunity to make an impact for the kingdom of God, so please don’t waste it!