We all have talent, right? Every one of us has something that comes naturally to us. Even certain behaviors and thought processes can be considered talents, such as the ability to put together a puzzle quickly or looking at a piece of equipment and intuitively knowing how to assemble/fix it. There are people we call “forerunners” that seem to have all the cool ideas. Where do you think these gifts come from? God (Yahweh), our Creator, has designed each of us with giftings (talents) so we can function in who we are meant to be. Now, what we do with those talents is a whole different thing!
What are your talents? How have you developed them?
In this post, I get to tell on myself. After all, I’m my best example because unless I’ve been there and done that, I probably have no business sharing with you something I’ve never experienced.
There’s shows on TV that search out good talent… America’s Got Talent, Britain’s Got Talent, The Voice, etc. The purpose is to discover people who have a natural ability at something. We all have yearnings and passions to do certain things. Others can seemingly do difficult tasks with ease or have the capacity to think outside the proverbial box. Either way, we all desire to do things that bring joy to ourselves as well as those around us. But, how many of us realize that most of what’s within us is actually put there by God? If He put our gifts there, don’t you think they are there for a reason?
As a youngster, I had many career goals. They included being an electrician, a ballerina (don’t laugh… it’s true!), and a musician. If memory serves me right, I had some successes in school and/or life that helped steer me towards these career desires. In college, I majored in music and became a professional classical musician/teacher. To actually pay the bills? I sold cars, worked as a house director in a sorority, was a public school teacher, owned and operated an espresso business, and even did a stint as a cook for a fraternity. Every night for dinner, it was “Where’s the beef?”
Did you notice that very few of my “money making jobs” involved professional music making? I’m amazed at how many people I meet have a career that doesn’t match their college degree. I’m also amazed at how many people really don’t like their jobs. Most of the reasons focus on how bad the management is, or how horrible their co-workers are, or the hours are terrible, etc. Oh yeah, pay is also a huge factor in how well the job is liked or not. I think (to myself, of course) when people complain… “would you like some cheese with that whine?” I’ve noticed that as long as we keep complaining about what we don’t have, we seem to keep going around the same tree, never getting out of the same rut.
I’ll have to admit that I didn’t always like some of my jobs. However, I understood that I could make a choice in how I reacted to the circumstances of being in that particular job. I hated selling cars because it was the most boring job… ever. But, I found ways to make it fun, such as the ongoing game of tag that lasted about a year. I’d be sitting quietly at my desk and before I knew it, a figure whizzed by, gently touching me and I’d hear the words “You’re it!” as the figure took off running in a different direction. A chase around the car lot usually ensued.
My passion since high school has always been music, which didn’t appear to promise a decent salary as a career. But, it’s what I wanted… or so I thought. My focus was on “how am I going to live and have my needs met while still enjoying what I do?” Everything focused on living life on earth and demonstrating the Love of God IN those places. That all changed when I was introduced to what it means to be a “Son of God.”
Learning to be a “Son of God” involves understanding that our function and role comes from heaven down to where we are on earth. We go up into that intimate place with Father, then come back down with the revelation of who we are. It’s out of that discovery where we learn to be “In Him” which then leads to using what’s been put within us as part of our function in the kingdom realms. We are spirit beings living in a temporary situation on earth. So, what’s more important? A few years here on earth or eternity?
Backing up a bit… For years, I was frustrated that I seemed to take many job rabbit trails while the illusive dream job continued to pass me by. With such a variety of non-musically related experiences, I often thought that time was wasted. After what seemed like my last ditch effort for a job I really wanted, I began to wonder how God was using this. That’s when everything in my life began to turn upside down. Ya gotta love those moments. Hang on for the ride!
I began to take an inventory of what I’d done. Then, Papa began to show me how EVERYTHING I’d ever done was part of training. Yes, even selling espresso drinks while singing cheesy songs was training. Selling cars? How could that possibly be part of my training? In both these situations, I had the privilege of dealing with people – customers. As a side note here… I call God “Papa” because I’ve been in those intimate places where we hang out in my “heart garden” and talk for hours. He’s my daddy and we discuss many things. It’s in these intimate times with Papa, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and those in the Cloud of Witnesses that I began to understand how my “jobs” could be useful as training in the giftings that had been put within me. Nothing is wasted! What a relief it was to hear that!
WHAT ABOUT MY MUSIC?
I can be geeky classical musician or a goofball that likes to sing cheesy songs. It all depends on the day… What most people probably don’t understand is there are things about classical musicians that make us unique. In fact, science has even proven that people who read sheet music and play a musical instrument actually use both the left and right side of the brain simultaneously. It’s the only activity done by humans where both sides of the brain work together… at the same time. Classically trained musicians are used to being both creative and analytical. And, it has worked to my benefit.
In college, I hated to write and research. All I wanted to do was play music. All that other junk that came with getting a college degree seemed stupid and useless to me. But, I wanted the degrees bad enough that I finally made it through a doctoral program. The end result? I learned to love research and actually enjoyed writing my dissertation. They say the longer the title, the better the dissertation so I made sure mine was super long. Some ten years later, I began to research how musical frequencies affect us. Thus began my Healing Frequencies Music website. It was several months after starting the site before I created my first album. Originally, the site was for research purposes only.
With my classically trained musical mind, I’d been spending time in the throne room in heaven watching how frequencies interact with everything and wondering how it all fit. At the same time, music that wasn’t written on a page started flowing out of me. That’s not too strange considering I’d already sort of been doing that in prayer meetings. What was strange is how heaven reacted to the music I was creating. Much of what I did and saw, I had no grid for. I simply did everything by faith and hoped for understanding later on.
While in the studio, the recording engineer (Dave) said some interesting things to me. Most recording engineers have heard the gamut of talent from wanna-be rock musicians to highly trained classical musicians. At first, I was a little leery of using a recording studio on a college campus at a school of music. This recording involved playing my second instrument (piano) with what sounded like ethereal “out of this world” music. It felt a little strange at first and I was definitely out of my comfort zone! It helped that Dave was already familiar with me as a classical musician and was willing to take on this project.
When it was all said and done, Dave commented that although I was playing non-classical music, the classical nuances transferred over to this new music. In other words, my “training” filtered into what I created without me consciously thinking about it. At first, I was a bit confused but then he explained… Dynamics, tempo fluctuations, how an instrument (especially piano) is touched, phrasing, and rhythm all play a part in how a tune is performed “musically.” I inherently made a variety of adjustments on my own during the recording process, especially with dynamics. Because of that, he didn’t have to make those adjustments during the final mix. If you watch the video on the main page of the Healing Frequencies Music website, you’ll see that I move when playing the percussion instruments. At first, I was trying to create dynamic contrasts by how close/far I was from the microphones. Eventually, as I watched (in the spirit) what was going on in the throne room during worship, these movements were for more than just dynamics. But, that’s for another blog post…
THE LESSON IN THIS?
A light came on for me when Dave commented about my musicianship while creating this new music. Because I was still getting over the paradigm that classical musicians struggle with playing by ear, I assumed I had to throw all of my training out the window in order to show I could flow in the spirit musically. You can take the girl away from the training but you can’t take the training out of the girl. In a nutshell, I had to get over myself and see that Papa was showing me how He could use what I’d already learned as a classical musician, weaving that into something new. THROUGH my previous training, a different sound, unique to me, was able to come forth. I can’t be someone else. I have to be ME and who God created me to be. How can I do that if I try to be and sound like someone or something else?
Everything we do can be used in the process of developing our gifts, even those things we think are of no use. I also learned that no matter what job I had, I could be happy and learn to enjoy it. Why work in a place that you hate? Even with the worst boss, we still have a choice in how to respond. Trust me, I understand! I had a job where a boss did everything in her power to get me to quit. I was blamed for things I didn’t do, berated and told how lame I was, and accused of stealing money from the company. And, my lack of response to her antics made it only worse. I fulfilled the remainder of my contract and left, still treating her with respect. I’ll admit that it wasn’t easy. But, I learned more from that experience than most of the others in how to be thankful IN everything. Something about that scripture in 1 Thessalonians that kept me going.
Musically speaking, I had no grid as late as the spring of 2015 in how my musical training could be used for anything outside of classical music. It required me being open to seeing things the way Papa saw them and then allowing myself to explore those possibilities. I had to get outside my classical training box but at the same time, understand what I’d learned would not be wasted. God has a way of molding what we already know and have experienced into something new. But, that requires opening ourselves up to those possibilities, even when we have no clue what the end result will be.
As I said above, we all have an innate ability to do something a bit easier than others around us. We have passions and things we love to do. Oh how it would be nice to make a living at doing some of those passions! Because we can’t seem to figure out a way, in our human thinking, we often settle for less. Then, when we aren’t doing what we think we should be doing, bitterness and frustration can easily set in. Sound familiar?
I dare say that when we learn to be satisfied in our current situation, with an understanding that there is probably a purpose for that situation, the door to favor can then open for us. It may take more years than we desire but if we do as Paul says and keep looking forward toward the prize, it’s always easier. We simply must get out of our “human” understanding of how WE think something is supposed to look. Again, using myself as an example… I had no framework for creating prophetic instrumental music. First of all, it required “going up” into the kingdom realms to see, hear, taste, smell, and touch what Papa had for me IN that realm. That’s when things started to unlock for me.
I challenge those who read this post… Take an inventory of your jobs and passions. Make it a point to sit down with the Father and ask Him to show you how that fits into the blueprint of your life. If that’s not something you know how to do, I suggest you purchase Ian Clayton’s teaching titled “I Can See” so you can understand why it’s important to “come up here” as John talked about in the book of Revelation. I also have some very beginning guides that can assist you along your way. CLICK HERE for those materials. Lastly, NW Ekklesia has mentoring sessions where those who are on this journey, assist each other.
What you have is important and is within you for a reason. Don’t let that be wasted on “I don’t know if I can” or “I don’t see how that will work” or some other excuse that will keep you from moving forward. Once we each realize there are things put within us that are directly from the Father, we can learn how to use them to fulfill the mandate we each have on our lives.