I love music, just not in my home, while I am working and playing with the kids. My husband loves music too, all the time and everywhere. It drives me a bit batty on the days that he works from home because every time I enter the living room (where he insists on working) I have to turn off the music or else my stress level escalates rapidly. Sometimes I don’t notice it right away, but my body does, the moment I realize the cause of my extra tension (with seven kids there is always a healthy dose of tension in my home) and I turn off the music, swhoosh-I feel my tension decrease.
The only times this strange phenomena doesn’t happen is at Christmas time. As long as the music being played is Christmas music, I can have it playing all day throughout the house. This Easter I am actually going put together a specific Easter music list and see if it has the same effect on our home as Christmas music does.
To illustrate why good music is so important, I I started the day with having the kids jump from one carpet to another carpet, changing the distance until they no longer could make it in one leap. We discussed how God is like the one mat that never moved, but we are sometimes like the carpet that moved further and further away from our Heavenly Father. In order to stay close to God we need to do certain things. One of those things is to pray. The scriptures say that we must : Pray always, that you may come off conqueror yea, that you may conquer Satan, and that you may escape the hands of the servants of Satan that do uphold his work.
Music is a great way to help us to keep a prayer into our heart because “The song of the Righteous is a prayer unto me and shall be answered with blessings upon their heads”. The hymn book states: The hymns invite the Spirit of the Lord, create a feeling of reverence, unify us as members and provide a way for us to offer praises to the Lord. Some of the greatest sermons are preached by the singing of hymns. Hymns move us to repentance and good works, build testimony and faith, comfort the weary, console the morning, and inspire us to endure to the end.
I found this interesting because as much as I don’t like to have music waffling (to me it is like buzzing annoyingly) throughout the house all day, I truly love good music. I love making home movies partly because finding good music to put the movies to is so fun for me to do. I also know that when my kids, with all their crooked pony tails, bare feet and off key voices, can bring tears to the patients in the hospital that they sing too on sundays. The power of music to take one back in time is incredible, and still when I hear “Paradise City” from Guns’N Roses, I grin (though the noise seems unbarable now) because immediately I am brought back to my late teen-age nights driving home with my sister and singing that rotten song at the top of my lungs. This peek into my youth causes even my teen age boy to shake his head and ask “You really liked this song?”. For good or for evil, music can change ones life.
One of my favorite talks (taken with a grain of salt realizing this guy came from a different world then mine-I definitely am not that ‘angel at home’ 🙂 reads:
Elder Neal A. Maxwell (1926–2004) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said: “We … live in a world that is too prone to the tasteless and we need to provide an opportunity to cultivate a taste for the finest music. And likewise, we’re in a world that’s so attuned to the now. We need to permit people to be more attuned to the best music of all the ages.” 6
Recognizing the penetrating influence of great music, Oscar Wilde had one of his characters say, “After playing Chopin, I feel as if I had been weeping over sins that I had never committed, and mourning over tragedies that were not my own.” 7 After the first performance of Messiah,Handel, responding to a compliment, said, “My lord, I should be sorry if I only entertained them—I wish to make them better.” 8 Haydn “dressed in his best clothes to compose because he said he was going before his maker.” 9
He concludes: Some events in life are so sublime that they cannot be imagined without the companionship of beautiful music. We could not have a Christmas without carols or a general conference without sacred anthems. And there could not be a heaven without music of surpassing beauty. President Young said, “There is no music in hell, for all good music belongs to heaven.” 10 It would be punishment enough to go to hell and not hear a note of music for all eternity.
This Easter I want to be more particular about the music I listen to. I want to find music that rejoices in the atonement, gives thanks for the Savior and brings a sense of reverence and love into my home so that we all may do “good works, build testimony and faith, comfort the wary, console the mourning and [become] inspir[ed] to endure to the end. Any suggestions of your favorite christ-centered music?