“Every day I feel is a blessing from God. And I consider it a new beginning. Yeah, everything is beautiful.” –Prince
I grew up listening to Prince. His creativity, ability to avoid being put in a box (both personally or musically), and his capacity to continue to be innovative always intrigued me. In recent years I have become impressed with his deep connection and commitment to Minnesota.
Prince’s untimely death this last week has clearly had a significant impact on people both here in Minnesota and across the globe. For those who are not long term, deep devotees to Prince, the outpouring of grief for someone they did not know personally may appear odd. I would suggest that this is the power of music.
You’re driving along in your car, a song comes on the radio, and you are immediately taken back to a time, a place, a person—an experience. Music has that power. A song or hymn, as you hear the lyrics give voice to something you believe, you have encountered, or you have been trying to articulate. A wonderful instrumental piece of music begins to play and it begins to feel like an out-of-body experience that takes you to another reality. That is the power of music.
Music, in its myriad forms, has been a part of worship potentially from the beginning of creation. So central is it to the worship experience for many individuals that when it changes it can be significantly challenging. And for many, central to their faith journey, music has been life changing. That is the power of music.
Sacred or secular, instrumental or filled with lyrics, the power of music lies in its capacity to be transformative. In fact, I heard a saying once that resonates with me, “music is the Spirit’s playground.”