by Eric Julin
Last Sunday we went to a church that was meeting in a school. As we walked in the people there were very friendly and welcoming. The only problem was the music was too loud, even in the foyer. They very courteously tried to usher us in but even with my hearing aids turned off the music was way too loud. We turned and left.
We will never know if the preaching was good, if it was true to the Bible, if it would have made us more effective in our Christian life. We will never know if there were good and lasting friends to meet there. We will never have the opportunity to contribute our knowledge built up over 41 years of a faithful Christian marriage. We will never be able to participate in the music. We will never be able to encourage the believers there to read the Bible every day as we have done all our married life. We will miss any encouragement there may have been there for us, or the new lessons we needed to learn.
All this because the music was too loud. No one in that congregation could have heard themselves singing the songs or heard others around them singing. Some would have been discouraged from singing.
I would have liked to attend a small church with contemporary music, even if they never sang the old hymns or even owned hymn books. I like up-beat music. I like rock-and-roll. I grew up on rock-and-roll. I like jazz too. The radio in my car would never be tuned to a classical station; classical music is OK, I just do not prefer it.
But the volume of the music at that church will never be turned down. That’s because the audio guys like it that way. They like it loud. They can stand it either because they are already deaf, or because they are wearing earphones and are not effected by it. They control the volume, not the musicians, singers or the pastor. He who turns the dial has the power.
And the congregation there must like it too because they stay.
Some might say, “Just get over it and learn to be immersed in the experience.” I wear hearing aids because I have poor hearing. I have had poor hearing all my life. I have spent six thousand dollars on hearing aids just so I can hear somewhat better yet I still struggle to hear. I refuse to allow some audio-jockey to bore out my ears and destroy what hearing I have left.
Someone said, “If it’s too loud, you’re too old.” I guess I am.
(This post originated in my husband’s blog which can be seen at congaeric.com)