Spiritual Places · Uncategorized

Tuning A Guitar and Spiritual Symphonies

Today at church I discovered the guitar I would use for worship was out of tune. So I sat at the piano, plunking keys and tightening or loosening each string. A young fellow from the sound booth approached and offered to tune it for me; he had an electronic tuner. I gave him the guitar and watched.

As it turned out, the tuner didn’t work properly. So I thanked him and took the guitar back to the piano to finish tuning.

But this blog is not about how we use technology. I have (obviously!) not kept up with my electronic skills in music; I need to learn.


I do think I will always enjoy tuning to the old technology of the piano. I have to listen, and listen closely, carefully calibrating each string to the other. Listening tunes my ear to the symphony of strings.

Evelyn Underhill talked about “spiritual symphonies” in The Spiritual Life. She described how many Christians attend a symphony, read the program, praise the music’s quality, but only really hear a phrase or two.  They have no idea “of the mighty symphony which fills the universe, to which our lives are destined to make their tiny contribution…the self expression of the Eternal God.”

Tuning a guitar won’t tune me into the “symphonic self expression of God.” But tuning my heart will. I have to listen and listen closely. Perhaps then I will be able to make my tiny contribution.

6 thoughts on “Tuning A Guitar and Spiritual Symphonies

  1. Great comments all, thank you. Your insights give me food for thought, and more blogging ideas! You saw things I didn’t “write.” Why we all love this profession: expressing spirituality through writing.

  2. I loved this. How often do we admit that the tuner, the person or thing to which we compare our selves, is not working right?! I think in many cases, the piano and its equivalents, is the best thing to use. I like, too, the blogger’s comment that “prayer is tuning”. I would agree.

  3. I am in a real “listening” mode right now and learning what all is involved with the discipline. Not passive at all, but very active.

  4. Love your thoughts on tuning the guitar–you bring some fresh and inspiring thoughts to
    Christian thoughts and theology. Betty

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