Music and God’s presence will get us through this uncertain time


Playl's Ponderings - By Steve Playl

Back in the days before COVID-19 changed the world we live in, Sammie and I drove to Wilmington, North Carolina, to see Katie Grace, the youngest of our stinking-cute grands. She played the part of Gretl, the youngest of the von Trapp children, in The Sound of Music. In Nahnee and Papa’s eyes, she was the star of the show. Since then, we’ve only seen her on the screens of our devices...same as the Playl Boys and the Nash Kids. That separation has been a real heartache the virus has caused for us and many other grandparents.

But allow me to share, as much as possible by printed word, some of the experiences we have been permitted through modern technology. To lighten the weight of the pandemic load that all of us are bearing, their church in Wilmington made available some entertainment with various church members singing on video. Opera House Theatre Company, which had presented The Sound of Music, did the same with different folks associated with the theatre. We’ve watched the videos that featured Shannon and Katie Grace - uh, a few times.

In the video from St. Andrews - Covenant Presbyterian Church they sang “Do-Re-Mi” K.G. explained that, in the play, she was Gretl and her mom was “just a nun.”

In the presentation from Opera House Theatre, Musical Theatre Live May 4, Shannon and others sang several songs. Then, from their backyard, Katie introduced herself, “Hi. I’m Katie Grace. You may remember as Gretl. I have a note for you, and I’m going to sing it.”

In the play, she sang, “The sun has gone to bed and so must I...”

For the times we are now living in, she rewrote the line from “So Long Farwell” and sang, in a very dramatic and sad tone, “Everyone must stay at home and so must I.” Then she waved at the camera in her mom’s phone.

We also received a picture of the two of them in masks as K.G. readied to meet the public in an essential business, maintaining proper social distance, of course. It was the first building K.G. had been in, other than her house and her dad’s house, in several weeks.  She’s such a social butterfly...and a hugger, too. It’s been extremely difficult for her to be separated from people in general and especially her Nahnee and Papa.

When everyone must stay at home, it is a big inconvenience for most of us. For some, the last several weeks have been much worse than inconvenient. A dear friend in New Orleans has lost four family members in the past couple months, three to the virus and one to cancer. Nine members of his family have been infected with COVID-19.

A friend of our daughter, Stephanie, has a teenager who contracted the virus and is now confined to ICU on a ventilator. His family is not permitted to visit him, and his younger brother is quarantined - from the rest of the family - due to being exposed to the patient.

Please pray for those who are suffering and those who have had to say “good-bye for now” to loved ones. Pray that God will comfort them as only He can. Pray that our world will turn to Him for whatever healing He chooses to give.

For those of us merely inconvenienced or perhaps even stressing over financial burdens that are also very real, some relief may be found in the gift of music that God has given to us. Whether it is strictly entertaining, or perhaps inspirational, such as the organ music of my friend Charlie Lawson or praise teams on livestreamed worship services, let music lift you up. Thank God for the available devices to communicate with each other in a positive way during these difficult times. Especially, thank God that electronic devices are not needed to communicate with Him.

And remember...we’re in this together.


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