One of the many things that perplex me is the content of contemporary popular music. Clearly this is much beloved of everyone born after World War II. In the past I was able to understand and appreciate some of it, but I am totally baffled by the latest music. I search for melody and find none. I listen to the lyrics, and if I can make them out, they are still incomprehensible. Why is this? Is my brain so set in its ways, so adverse to new things that I can no longer appreciate the new?
I was sitting in church with a good friend, my age, when I noted in the bulletin that we were going to sing, “Come in, come in and sit down, you are part of the family.” I was quite tickled because I know how much he dislikes the hymn. I try to be open-minded about these new hymns, but oh how I miss the old ones. On the rare occasion when we do sing one of these old ones, I will often find tears appearing in my eyes.
When our son got married, our daughter-in-law had a lovely thought. Because my father couldn’t be there, we would sing his favorite hymn, "Immortal Love", by John Greenleaf Whittier. “We may not climb the heavenly steeps to bring the Lord Christ down.” She photocopied the words and music for the guests, but the organist played an unfamiliar tune that my brother and I couldn’t sing, a terrible disappointment. I then realized how much the tune and the words belonged together.
Often before the organ prelude Irma Brewer would play a few of the old hymns on the piano. Last week she died, and a week from Sunday, in her memory, we are going to have a hymn sing an hour before the regular service. I wouldn’t miss it for the world.