Saturday, August 04, 2007

Adventures in Leadership

The last couple of weeks have been pretty wild -- most of the leadership were away at a denominational conference or on holidays, while most of the other leaders who remained and in charge of leading services were sick. One of the ill people in question was the worship leader, leaving yours truly to lead musical worship through lists of pre-chosen songs that were in and out of my vocal range (mostly out). Fortunately, I've learned a few vocal tricks over the years, and if I can't sing in key, I go low. And I had another vocalist with a higher range than mine to fill in the blanks, so to speak (and I filled in hers as well). I had to do more liturgical chanting than normal -- I don't normally chant the Torah blessings, just the regular Shabbat liturgy.

Our crew has led services on our own numerous times and are usually prepared for whatever comes our way. However, we did not expect someone who used to attend our congregation to pass away unexpectedly. Although G-d led her somewhere else, she remained friends with many in the congregation, and this was a blow. We found out simply because I saw her obituary in the newspaper. I had the sobering task of letting as many people know about her passing as possible, and fortunately several people were able to attend her memorial. Which led me to do something I never have done before: chant Kaddish. I was able to recite it in Hebrew, without the tune, after several practise sessions.

My journey in leadership is reflective of my walk with G-d in life in general. Just when I am about to say that I have done every task or role, something new is thrown my way. And sometimes I simply cannot anticipate what is around the corner. I just feel very excited lately, because life in a relationship with G-d is always an adventure.

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