Balance and Harmony

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In my vocal training as a first soprano, there are many aspects I’ve been taught that need to be considered especially when singing choral music and as we carry the harmony in most songs.  One important part is that of balance; making sure we can hear the other parts of the choir so as not to over sing and drown out other’s voices, thus creating beautiful harmony.

In life there are many forces driving us to stand out in the crowd…to stand up for what we believe and to be heard and seen doing it.  Social media, in a sense, enables each of us to be politicians with a voice to be heard and pictures to prove it.  We feel things deeply and some with a passion to move mountains and change the course of history.  Oft times, we want to walk faster than we can run because we feel time and life is short, therefore, we want to make a difference, NOW.  How can we do the good deeds of life on short time with little notice, not standing out of the crowd with imbalance, but creating balance and harmony as we go along?

Brent L. Top said the following about temporal balance:  “The imbalance between the temporal and the spiritual is an age-old problem that seems to be growing worse in our day of increasing materialism. Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles observed, “Perhaps none need the principle of balance in their lives more than those who are driven toward accumulating ‘things’ in this world.” 2 Moreover, numerous good and honorable causes beckon for our time and energy. Whether selfishly or unselfishly, we may get and spend, hurry and scurry, come and go, and later discover that we have laid waste our emotional and spiritual strength and given our hearts away to things that matter very little in the end. The Book of Mormon prophet Jacob, paraphrasing Isaiah, warned, “Do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy” (2 Ne. 9:51; seeIsa. 55:2).

Elder Dean L. Larsen, an emeritus member of the Seventy, observed, “I seem to be encountering more and more frequently in my circulation among the membership of the Church, people who are honestly trying to avoid sin, who are really doing their best, as they understand, to live in accordance with the principles of the gospel but who are unhappy, frustrated, and disillusioned to a considerable degree.” 1

King Benjamin warned his people about going to extremes, even in doing good: “See that all these things are done in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength” (Mosiah 4:27)”.

There are times when my choir director tells we first sopranos to really sing as loud as we can and it is only during those times when He really wants us to sing out thus setting a standard for the rest of the choir to follow because he knows if we hit those high notes with boldness and strength, the rest of the choir will match our intensity.  Considering our proper place and station in life, there may be times when we stand up and stand out against our peers in truth and righteousness, especially when we are set apart as missionaries, but realizing we are all missionaries.  I may be preaching to the choir but, hopefully, we strengthen those around us not because we seek the limelight or “diva” status, we can elevate the “choir” around us so all can shine with boldness, clarity and resonance having beautiful balance and harmony as we merrily row along….life is but a dream.

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