Five Minute Friday

Thinking of Mom: “Practice Makes Perfect!”

Happy Friday…and time for another Five Minute Friday.  This week’s prompt is practice…which immediately reminds me of the years of piano lessons.  They were decades of ago – seem a lifetime ago – but memories of those required thirty minutes every afternoon still seem painful.  Dreaded. Thinking about the time spent practicing is bittersweet.  I recall the arguments, even tears, over getting it done.  So many times she admonished, “Practice makes perfect!”  But I also remember the results.  The music I could play and the enjoyment I had.  Oh, the enjoyment!!  Truly bittersweet is the regret of not following through and my lack of ability now at the piano.

Those middle-school thoughts also bring memories of my mother.  Those memories are bittersweet as well, as they often are with anyone we miss so dearly.  I love to remember but the remembering also hurts.  If you are missing your mother this weekend, I pray you will find joy, even peace, in a memory.  Choose one or two special memories and savor those this Sunday.  If your mom is alive, don’t take this time for granted.  I know days like Mother’s Day can mean many things – and stir many emotions and responses – from all of us.  Whether you are a mom or desperately want to be a mother.  Whether your relationship with mom is close, strained or absent.  Or perhaps you are like me – not only missing your mom but your own mama’s heart is full but forever marked by grief.  Whatever your situation, find someone to bless on Sunday.  Find another mom to appreciate, to encourage or simply to remember.  It’s the best way to have a Happy Mother’s Day.

START – My mom’s mothers (um, my grandmother) played the piano by ear.  She even played and sang in the early years on a weekly radio program.  Way before my time.  My mother inherited her singing ability.  Mom loved to sing – sang little choruses and “ditties” all the time – and used her singing voice to serve the Lord.  Musical talent came naturally to both of them.  For me…not quite as natural.

My musical ability requires much more practice and training.  When I sing in the choir, I do best following a stronger singer.  And my piano playing skills have all but disappeared since I gave up practicing – or even playing.  I have always said that I have just enough musical talent to realize I don’t have enough talent.  But I love music and would love to play.  I enjoy singing and would love to sing well (or, at least, better).  I would also like to learn a new instrument.  A very new trick for this very old dog:)  Learning the clarinet, remembering the piano, improving my voice…they all require practice.

I know this but I don’t always do this.  I admit it.  I also know this applies to so much more than music.  Any skill or ability – whether learned or a natural gift – requires practice in order to improve, perfect and to simply to be of any value.  Increasing in knowledge without using the knowledge is of little value.  Having wonderful natural talent without ever using it is a shame.  Whatever we have been entrusted with – talents, knowledge, abilities, etc. – we should be careful to appreciate them and to use them in order to honor the Lord.

STOP.  You can find the rest of the FMF posts on “practice” here.   Again, Happy Mother’s Day!!

6 thoughts on “Thinking of Mom: “Practice Makes Perfect!”

  1. Jennifer, first of all, thanks for your thoughts on Mother’s Day. It can be a difficult day for so many reasons. I took piano lessons when I was girl. One of my big regrets is that I didn’t stay with it. It was so hard to sit inside at our piano while watching friends and sisters doing cartwheels across the lawn. I wanted to be out there!

    I appreciate your exhortation to hone the gifts and talents God has given us. I admit, there are seasons when taking the time to practice feels like too much. But, I’m taking your words and sifting them and asking God to show me if I need to revise how I spend some of my time.

    I hope your Mother’s Day is sweet, my friend!

    1. Thanks so much for your kind words, Jeanne. Always encouraged when you stop by! You (and I) are certainly not the only one regretting the choice to “quit piano”! Huge sigh. I hope you have a blessed day on Sunday as well!!

  2. Hi Jennifer, thank you for the encouragement to choose a good memory of my mom. She has been gone over 25 years, but Mothers Day continues to hold sadness for me. I too appreciated your words from above about using our given gifts. I feel blessed to have connected with you this week at FMF. In Christ, Julie

    1. I’m so glad you stopped by!! We never stop missing our moms, do we?? Find that sweet memory – and enjoy your weekend!!

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