I’ve written a lot about musical life lessons before (see the list at the end of this post), but there are always more things on which to focus. Like the conductor! If you’re a musician, you should be focusing on the conductor.
The conductor, or the director, is the person in charge of making sure all the mistakes and problems are ironed out during practice, is in charge of making sure all the musicians start and stop the song at the same time, is the one who makes sure they’re all on the same page (literally and figuratively), and is the one who cues them during the song to communicate something they’re supposed to do or not do. If you don’t keep your eyes on the conductor, you might get out of tempo with the other musicians if he tells everyone to slow down or speed up. You might come in at the wrong time. You might get lost entirely and have no idea where in the music you’re supposed to be at now.
I’ve found that the more frequently you work with a conductor and the closer you are as friends, the better your non-verbal communication will be while the music is going. Getting a feel for the conductor’s nuances really helps you keep things together with him, and by extension the other musicians, so when you do slip up or lose your place for a moment, it’s easier to find your way back just by looking at the conductor, sometimes exchanging a meaningful glance.
Let’s not forget the most important part! Practicing! Before you even get to the performance, you’ll be practicing together. That’s part of how you and the conductor build your ability to communicate with each other with the smallest gestures. That’s where you work on what everyone needs to tighten up or let flow in the music. That’s where you learn what cues the conductor is going to give, and where and when the cues will be given. It’s also where you can ask for specific cues if you need a little extra help.
Life can be compared to paying attention to the conductor in a band, orchestra, or choir. Working with God and building your relationship with Him will make you better at following His cues. When you take your eyes off God, you might do okay for a while, but then you’ll find you’re getting a bit lost, or you’re lagging behind, or you’re going too fast, or you’re in a different portion of the song. But just like in a band, orchestra, or choir, looking at the Conductor again really helps. If you’ve built up a relationship and have practiced, you’re less likely to get lost, and more likely to find your place faster if you do get lost.
You’ve got a wonderful part assigned to you! Keep your eyes on the Conductor!