Life is a journey

Birth is a beginning and death a destination

And life is a journey

From childhood to maturity

And youth to age,

From innocence to awareness

And ignorance to knowing,

From foolishness to discretion

And then, perhaps to wisdom,

From weakness to strength

Or strength to weakness,

And often back again.

From health to sickness

And back, we pray, to health again

From offense to forgiveness

From loneliness to love

From joy to gratitude

From pain to compassion

And grief to understanding

From fear to faith

From defeat to defeat to defeat

Until, looking backward or ahead

We see that victory lies not at some high place along the way

But in having made the journey, stage by stage, a sacred pilgrimage

Birth is a beginning

Death a destination

But life is a journey

From birth to death to life everlasting

Author unknown, from the prayer book of the Shiva of my friend.

Baruch, my friends, Baruch

(Blessing, my friends, blessings)



Who are you and what breaks your heart?

The answer to the question is an important one and is different for every person. Within the answer to this question lies the desires of your heart, and where you can begin to find your purpose.

Who are you and what breaks your heart?

Who are you and what breaks your heart? I first heard this question a few years ago as a challenge from our youth pastor. Along with the other adult sponsors of our youth, I searched deep within myself to answer the question.  The answer to the question is an important one and is different for every person.  Within the answer to this question lies the desires of your heart, and where you can begin to find your purpose.   It took me several days to fully craft my response.  Over the next several years, I returned to the question as well as my answer, sometimes tweaking the verbiage, but never the message.

I am a musician, an engineer, a mentor; my desire is to leave things better than I found them; I am a sister, daughter, wife, mother, aunt, friend.

Suicide breaks my heart; cancer breaks my heart; human trafficking breaks my heart; seeing people make bad life decisions breaks my heart.

I am thankful for the One True and Living God who saved me from myself and, through His Son Jesus Christ, has saved me from my sins.

I am confidently persistent, boldly creative and passionately determined that I may inspire others to live a life that ultimately matters.

I am a believer in Jesus Christ and a firm believer that God has a plan for every one of our lives.   In my young life, I struggled to find that purpose.  Once I found it, I developed a passion to help others find their purpose in life as well.

This blog is a collection of life experiences, probably some past and some present, designed to connect with you on your life journey, to help you ultimately live a life that matters.  My sincerest prayer is that through my words, you are drawn into a deeper relationship with the One who can fulfill your purpose in life.




Holy Spirit You are welcome

“Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.”
‭‭Genesis‬ ‭1‬:‭2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him— the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord—”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭11‬:‭2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

““And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.”
‭‭Joel‬ ‭2‬:‭28‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”
‭‭John‬ ‭14‬:‭18‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”
‭‭John‬ ‭14‬:‭26‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”
‭‭Acts‬ ‭2‬:‭38‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.”
‭‭Acts‬ ‭2‬:‭4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!””
‭‭Luke‬ ‭11‬:‭13‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭8‬:‭9‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.”
‭‭John‬ ‭16‬:‭13‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.””
‭‭Acts‬ ‭1‬:‭8‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.”
‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭1‬:‭22‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit,”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭12‬:‭9‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues.”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭12‬:‭10‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them.”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭12‬:‭4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭8‬:‭26‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭2‬:‭14‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.”
‭‭John‬ ‭14‬:‭17‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“So he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty.”
‭‭Zechariah‬ ‭4‬:‭6‬ ‭NIV‬‬

We live in a spiritual world. As Ephesians tells us, our fight is not against flesh, but agains t the forces of evil in the heavenly realms. As Jesus prepared his desciples for his death, he told them a helper would come to guide and direct them. The book of Acts chronicles the event where the holy spiritual came down in tongues of fire from heaven and filled the disciples. Throughout the New Testament there are many references to the hilt spirit.

Have you ever had a nudge to do something? or to not do something? That’s the Holy Spirit! The Spirit does not fill those who do not belong to Jesus… the Bible is clear. You must repent and ask the Lord for forgiveness… and then the Hily Spirit comes upon you.

Gods word promises that the Holy Spirit will guide and direct us, give us words to say, intercedes for us when we don’t know how to pray so that we can by Christs witnesses throughout the world.

How comforting! Welcome the Holy Spirit today! Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

Holy Spirit, I welcome You wholeheartedly into my life, my inner being, to intercede on my behalf, to guide and direct and give me words. i am willing to go where You direct and give a testament of Your power in my life. Guide and direct me in Your Ways. Let everything i do reflect Your Glory.

Be blessed today, friends



over the past few years, i have been more diligent about devotions, spending time each morning studying scripture and praying. with my worship team, we spent the past year doing a short devotional each Sunday from a book of devotions i bought called “Grace Notes”, which relates themes to hymns (like Grace, or Faithfulnessl”

in previous years, i have selected a “word” of the year; however i am struggling with selecting one for this year.

instead, my goal this year is to write a devotion of my own each week, based on one of the worship songs our team does.

you’ll see these published in the category Devotion. my goal in this is more deep thought about the songs we’re singing and how they tie to spiritual life. who know, maybe someday i’ll publish. small book of devotions!

Be blessed my friends!

Happy New Year!

Gods Great Faithfulness

lamentations 3:19-22

New Years signifies a new beginning, a renewed opportunity to start anew. many commemorate this occasion with a new resolution… or a promise to themselves to change something… for some, it’s a promise to change physical habits… to return to the gym and start eating healthy again. For others, it’s organization and staying on top of things that need to be done. for others, it’s a spiritual renewal. it’s an opportunity to put the baggage from the past year behind us…and look toward the future with hope.

For some of us, this past year has been great, with many new and exciting things… for others, this past year has been filled with struggle and you’re more than ready to move on to a new one.

Lamentations is the lament of the prophet Jeremiah… lamenting the destruction of Israel because of their sin. yet he had hope because scripture (lamentations 3:22) tells us that Gods Compassions are new EVERY morning… not just on January 1.

This scripture reassures us that we have hope! so we will wait for Gods blessing because He is Faithful!

All i have need Your hand has provided. great is His faithfulness.

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father
There is no shadow of turning with Thee
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou hast been, Thou forever will be

Great is Thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love

Great is Thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine with 10, 000 beside

Great is Thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: Thomas Chisholm / W.m. Runyan

Great Is Thy Faithfulness lyrics © Tcf Music Publishing Inc, Hill And Range Songs,inc., Every Nation Songcasting, Works By Stone Angel Music

“And by the way, how can I pray for you?“

God is so awesome. When you love Him and trust Him, and look with expectation at the world around, He is faithful to send us signs of His goodness. I know this… and yet sometimes I find myself wallowing in self doubt and fear of failure.

As you know, a few weeks ago I was feeling pretty low… about the music studio which I have felt strongly was Gods calling in my life…. And I was frustrated with parents who don’t pay their invoice on time, leaving the studio strapped for cash flow. I was disheartened because September didn’t see the same level of been inquiries as previous September’s… and I began to doubt that I had heard God at all.

I read a pamphlet that said, “if you need more, give more”, and I increased my tithe, both at home and at the studio. and I began to pray specifically for all of our students and instructors and families…. It began to change my heart about how I felt. ( I also offered AutoPay to all of our students to help with cash flow), and joint a few Christian Business groups and Music Studio groups on Facebook to network with others who may be doing similar things.

Today I got a voice mail from an Emily looking for voice lessons. I called her back on my way to the studio… but I got her voice mail. Now we play phone tag. Her recorded message said, “hi this is Emily. Leave a message at the beep…. And, by the way, tell me how I can pray for you today!”

Ha. It caught me off guard. But I left a message and told her who I was… and that she could pray for the studio!

What a sweet girl! I can’t wait to talk with her again. Regardless if she becomes a student (although I am really hoping she does), I found her message very uplifting!

Thank you, Lord, for the reminder that You are in control. I commit our studio plans to You, and trust that You will direct our path, providing every resource needed in exactly Your timing. In Your Holy and Precious name I pray. Amen

Be blessed today, my friends!


Give more

Friends, I am really wrestling with God lately. Over the past three years, I have seen God show up in enormous ways. Those glimpses of Gods power have truly lit me on fire and given me a passion to want others to experience what I have…

But man, the details of life can really get me down.

I apologize in advance for todays diatribe… but want to get it out there and ask my journey community if they could pray for me.

In 2019, We opened our music studio in Greensburg… my business partner Dan and me.

We are at the three year point and I’m exceedingly frustrated. I’m frustrated with parents who don’t respect our studio policies, students with little to know commitment, and managing the minutia in the daily details. I’m frustrated by families who don’t pay their tuition and expect lessons for free because they are going through hard times. In June, we saw a large drop off of students for a “summer break”. I’ve been teaching long enough to know they ain’t coming back

(As an aside, while I genuinely want to be sympathetic to people, and have actually paid some of their invoices out of my personal pocket – because it’s deeper than the studio pocket right now—- I find myself resentful for a couple of reasons.. one is that I too, have gone through A LOT of turmoil over the past three years of Dan’s illness. In addition, I think back to the sacrifice my own mother made to provide music education to me.. in 1985, she paid $25 per lesson for me to study privately with a professor from Duquesne University… that equates to almost $70 per lesson in todays currency…. And never once did my professor go unpaid)

Shortly after opening in 2019, Dan got very sick with his cancer and/or alcohol withdrawal (the docs couldn’t agree). It was literally within months of opening and I found myself questioning if I had heard Gods voice at all, or if it was just my own voice all along. I asked God to send me a sign one day… and literally within minutes, the phone rang and someone inquired about lessons. I needed that affirmation that day…

We’ve been growing steadily since, although Covid threw a wrench in, we seemed to recover nicely. We’ve continued to grow and God provided a windfall that enabled us to upgrade some things in the studio to prepare for other growth.

Dan passed in August. It was truly a blessing to see him grow in the Lord from broken man to redeemed, and ushered into Heaven, a journey for which I will be grateful to have been part.

I am confident that it was, indeed, Gods call top open the studio… the “coffee shop” that began in my mind back in 2009… and God has seemingly affirmed through the years.

I find myself, however, once again questioning if I just misheard God, or if, perhaps, the studio was simply a tool God used for me to help Dan get his life straightened around.

My hears desire is to have the studio be an awesome place where kids and families can go, not only to master music, but to work on mastering life. My vision is to do music missions someday, either home or abroad. I know somehow I need to be present to connect with students and families, but still work my day job and teach in my home (my home studio is what’s earning the money to pay my half of the studio). I don’t even pay myself for lessons that I teach at the studio because I donate my salary to the overhead expenses.

Over the past week, I’ve been working on a five year plan of personal finances, specifically to plan out being able to retire from my day job. (On paper, it looks like it will be in August of 2027).

I’ve been asking the Lord to show me something… some sign, some word, some gem that will keep me going. As I laid out budget before the Lord and prayed for His guidance, I heard very very soft words, “Give more”

I tithe 10% of my salary. And I give of my time and talents on top of that, and sometimes even more financially. i never felt I had the right to tithe my husbands income because … well because. But I thought, “ok, God, I can give more money if that’s what you want”….

I am familiar with the loaves and fishes.. and keenly aware that God owns the cattle on 1000 hills.. I don’t mind giving more financially… I just want to be a good steward of all he’s given. At the studio, I know I pay my instructors more than what good business people would recommend, which leaves very little for overhead (which is why I donate my time to cover the overhead). I am grateful for my day job because it affords the opportunity to be able to not get paid from the studio, but also requires the , that I keep my day job. Lol. What an ironic conundrum.

Since yesterday, our studio enrollment dropped by four more lesson blocks per month. Pretty soon there won’t be anything left to give….

Could I ask that you pray that God will show me what He wants of me.. and give me the courage to obey ? I specifically need some affirmation that the music studio is something He wants. If it is, I am REALLY needing that sign…. And if it isn’t, I pray He will show me the best way to decommission it… I appreciate so much!

Be blessed my friends


Why do I serve You?

Yesterday morning I woke up angry at God and started this post….

“Friends, I’m struggling a bit this morning. I’m selfishly angry with God and need to ask for prayer.

I woke up this morning with the thought, “why do I serve You if you won’t even answer my prayer?” Somewhat grudgingly, I went to “work” as our worship leader… to lead a team who is leading a congregation in worship.

I have seen God do miracles before my very eyes, and bring restoration to people. I know He is able.

I have given my life to the Lord… I am grateful to be able to serve Him with music every week. I give my tithes and offerings willingly and with a joyful heart.

I know full well that being a Christian doesn’t mean we don’t have strife. But part of me is resentful this morning. Why do I pour myself into trying to be more like Jesus and still have this division in my home? Tension so think I can cut it with a knife, hurt so deep only God can heal.

Scripture of yesterday is psalm 147:3… “He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds”

Today, I woke up today feeling extremely anxious, about my job, and about the studio, and about students who haven’t paid their tuition, and about being able to pay my bills, and I lay in bed repeating the scripture, “be anxious for nothing but in prayer and petition, make your requests known to the Lord”

Then I got up to do my morning devotions

The verse of the day is:

Lord, I humble myself before You… I submit every anxious thought to you now and ask that You continue to shape me, equip me, enable and encourage me to be what You’ve called me to be and do what You’ve called me to do. I know You own a cattle on 1000 hills and will provide every need. Strip from me that which is NOT from You and help me let go of it, guide and direct each step, and provide for me mentors who can help me grow to be the person You want me to be.

Hope… or not?

“What is something you hope for?”

We asked this question in our small group of junior high students at youth group last fall.. I expected all sorts of answers from “I hope I pass my test” to “I hope for an amazing boyfriend”, or even “I hope for a Steelers win on Sunday”

To my dismay, what we got in return was crickets…. Even from our “Sunday school kids”.

(“Sunday school kids are the ones who grew up in Sunday School… who “know” the right answer to give even if they don’t believe it or don’t feel it. Though I’m thankful for these kids and their background in the Bible, sometimes I find their the hardest to actually break through because they put on a facade, and sometimes don’t deal well with the messiness of life. I always encourage our kids to just share THEIR feelings honestly and to NOT always give us the Sunday School answer)

On this day, though, my heart broke as NOT ONE of our 20+ kids could articulate a SINGLE thing they hoped for…. Not one.

And lest you think perhaps we leaders just put them on the spot awkwardly, might I just say that this same group normally has had no problem sharing their thoughts and personal struggles.

I literally had to ask them if they understood hope… and we spent some time discussing what it means to hope. My heart was broken.

What are we doing to our next generation? have we taken away ALL of their reason for hope? To the point where they no longer even TRY to have Hope leave and dreams?

My friends, if that doesn’t break your hearts, I would ask you to check your heartbeat…

What is something YOU hope for?

Blessings, SB

Rehearsing for my wake

March, 2022: “We were going to come up to see you speak and we had rehearsal for my wake. Tom had it all planned… they even got me a new tie! I was all dressed up and they had me lay down in the casket to see if it fit. And we had to rehearse for the play.”

“Rehearsal for your wake??” Goodness, I thought, what kind of dream were you having? He kept insisting that was what happened after he was discharged from the hospital, before I found him barely conscious and certainly not coherent.

Blood text and toxicology showed nothing in his system, not even the pain pills he was prescribed for the cancer which now eats away at his spine. he was fine when his son left him Saturday afternoon. When I didn’t hear from him Sunday morning, I got concerned. As soon as I got back into town I went to check on him.

It was all so eerily similar to what had happened two and a half years ago, except this time we had proof that it was not related to alcohol or the immunotherapy drug he was taking for cancer. Sometime between 2 pm Saturday and Sunday morning, he lost his mind.

I’ve shared with you about my business partner and friend before… and the journey he’s been through has been nothing short of amazing! Clearly God loves him and is keeping him for some special reason. As I look back at all that happened in 2019 / 2020 with his health, and compare what happened them to what happened now, I can’t help but see the similarities. The docs really didn’t have an explanation then… they tested for all kinds of things, and, though they did find some issues, they did not seem to find anything that could have caused his confusion. They don’t have an explanation now either.

As before, I went to the hospital early each morning to try to catch the doc before I went to work. His doctor comes early in the morning. One morning when I went in, Dan looked at me and said, “ I am bouncing back and forth between two dreams”. And he told me all about the dream where he was rehearsing for his wake…. Multiple times Over multiple days, each detail the same…

I was the speaker at our youth retreat the weekend he fell ill. That was true. But there were never any plans for him to come and see me speak. In fact, he has spent the week before in the hospital because his only kidney had quit working. There was never any talk about him coming to see me speak, yet he insisted that was the plan when his son brought him home from the hospital.

Our minds are such a fascinating mystery. Ive heard it said that we only use 10% of our brain. I know we are spiritual beings…

1 Corinthians 13:12 says “now we see things I perfectly like reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.”

Dan’s journey was a long and windy one… much like many of ours. I take comfort in the fact that he knew Jesus as his savior… and he knew where he’d spend eternity. Further, he can now see with perfect clarity visions that may have been unclear while on earth.

His “wake” was last weekend, August 13 and 14. Per his wishes, it included a day of music and celebration of his life at our studio, along with a memorial service at his church…. The church that welcomed him with open arms and came alongside him to shepherd him through the windy roads of his recovery and his journey of faith. Our worship team preluded the service with some of his favorite worship songs and his entire service spoke Jesus loud and clear to everyone who came.

I forever grateful to God who gave Dan the opportunity to get his life in order before He called him home.

The last several months have been what he called “the longest goodbye ever”. For a man who had made his peace with God, people he’d wronged, and gotten his affairs in order, he was prepared to go Home since last fall.

I’m the last several months of his life, he had a caregiver that we met from our church… a woman who retired from nursing last fall when the VA she worked for mandated the vaccine. She and her husband got to know Dan. On Easter weekend, 2022, she and her husband were baptized and asked Dan is he would stand with them. He was honored to.

For the last few weeks of his life, after he entered hospice care at home, Kathy was essentially round the clock care for him, and did a fabulous job! She and I kept close contact and watched for the signs of dying from the little blue handbook that the hospice nurses had provided.

My prayer was that I would be able to be with him when he left this earth and that I would know that he knew I was there. I was told that I’d have no control over either of those things, but I let my requests known. his prayer was that he would not die alone.

On the morning of Aug 2, Kathy called me to say he was congested and asked if I thought he might be allergic to his pain meds. I told her I didn’t think so and said I’d stop at his house before work, as I was working not to far from his home. On my way, I felt as if I needed to take the day off, so I messaged my boss to let her know. I arrived at Dan’s just before 9 am. He was lying very still but was responding to conversation with nods of his head.

At around 9:15, Kathy, holding his left hand, said, “Dan, those gates are going to open wide… and when they do, I want you to go on through!” He looked up at us and smiled and nodded his head while he said a very clear “uh-huh!” I was holding his right hand.

He breathed about 10 more breaths and then stopped, quite peacefully. I know that he knew I was there. He was not alone.

Kathy later told me that she really wanted to ask me to take the day off but was afraid to. She did not want to be the only one with him when he died.

God was so very gracious to have provided everything that each of us requested. As strange as it may sound, it was really quite a beautiful moment…. And knowing without a doubt where he would spend eternity made all the difference in the world! It is difficult to describe the peace and tranquillity that comes with absolute knowing where you will spend eternity.

I remember when Dan and I first got reconnected and I learned he had cancer, I thought, “really, God? That’s what you have for me? Not bad enough that I lost my dad to cancer, but Dan, too?” And yet somehow I knew that God would use this to bring further healing to my heart for losing my daddy all those years ago.

God is so good. All the time.

Be blessed today, my friends. If you don’t know for sure where you will spend eternity, let’s talk!God wants us all to know Him and spend eternity with Him!



But are we really Tolerant?

Hey friends. I haven’t posted in a long time for many reasons… but I’ve got some things on my mind and want to get them off my chest.

First, I hate how ugly our world has become. In this post-pandemic world in which we live, the love of many waxes cold, just as scripture said it would. that’s not exactly what this post is about though.

In previous posts, those who follow me may have read about the music/art studio we opened 3 years ago. It’s a long story but the short of it is that I felt called to open it, and my business partner and I have dedicated our business to the Lord. I don’t yet collect a paycheck from the studio, but have worked very hard in the last three years while working my day job too to try to grow the business. One day I’d like to quit my day job and run the studio full time.One of my role models is Mark Batterson, successful part or/author who is known for encouraging Gods children to follow their dreams and “work like it depends on you and pray like it depends on God”. I am trying to do that in all we do.

At the encouragement of our accountant (also a Christian), I have been joining various groups on Facebook for the purpose of posting our classes and workshops to as many people as possible. I personally despise the way social media has turned people against one another and have found that even people with similar viewpoints will lash out at one another because of the animosity in language. However, I find that a significant number of our students came to us because they learned about us on Facebook.

Several weeks ago, I saw a post on our local community page by a woman who was starting her own cleaning business. I forget the exact name if it but it was something like HisGlory Cleaning, and on her add, she had the words “servant”. Clearly hers was a Christian owned company and she wanted everyone to know. I applaud her. I scanned through the comments and saw a lot of well wishes, and people tagging other people who might be interested… and then I saw a comment by a girl who graduated with my daughter (she was known to be a bit of a prima Donna). She said, “but why say servant, tho?” For all the world I wanted to reply to her comment but I knew it would not do any good. So I kept my real thoughts to myself and posted that I am not in need but wished her much luck and success.

Ours is a Christian business, and anyone who visits our website can see that, but we teach anyone. We have instructors and students of all ages and religious backgrounds. I don’t push my views on anyone, but am unashamed of the God I serve. I have signs and artwork in our lobby that clearly show who we serve.

I’ve had some reasonable success finding groups to post our events and workshops on. An upcoming workshop we have for the summer is called Bandwagonz.


We have two classes available, one a rock band and one a worship band. I’ve posted:

Good morning, friends! Our Bandwagonz program kicks off in June 1! Time is running out to register!

We’re looking for students who play instruments (guitar, bass, keyboard/piano or drums) to join our summer Bandwagonz program!

Bandwagonz is an 8 week workshop which forms a band and teaches students all aspects of being in a band together. You need not be a current 12th Octave student to pre-register.

We’re specifically recruiting guitar, bass, drum, keyboard and vocals! Have some friends who play but don’t have a full band? Pre-register at the link below! We’ll form the band!

Rock Bangwagonz will meet on Wednesday evenings through June and July.

Praise and worship Bandwagonz will meet on Sunday evenings in June and July. Both programs culminate in a concert at our studio and other locations to be announced!

For more information visit our website or contact us: 412-414-3051 or info@12thoctave.com

I’ve posted on several local town groups, business groups and musician groups . Today I found a new group that seemed geared to theater, but since there are often musicians involved in theater, and theater is part of creative arts, I thought “why not?” So I asked to join the group and then posted the same as I had in other groups.

Almost immediately, someone commented and said I should have said it was a church group up front. Well… it’s not a church group. It’s a music studio. Another person commented and copied verbiage from our website where we indicate we operate on biblical principles. They criticized that we should tell everyone we are teaching hymns…. We are not teaching hymns… we teach a variety of music!

Keenly aware that a gentle answer turns away wrath, the anger inside me welled up large enough that I knew I couldn’t reply right away but prayed that God would give me words to say in defense of myself and our Savior. In short both of the members of this group had a real problem that we used the term “Christian” on our website (not on the original post mins you, although one workshop is for a “worship” band.

The one member went on to say that whether I realize it or not, the use of the word “Christian” was offensive to him and to many. The other person said that I should be upfront about being a Christian business so that someone wouldn’t unknowingly come somewhere they weren’t welcomed because they don’t subscribe to Christian values. Um… do you mean like how I unknowingly stumbled on their group and felt unwelcomed because I do subscribe to Christian values?

Christian values screams “you’re not welcome here”???? Really? Well for my first time posting on this group I surely didn’t feel welcomed THERE! So these two individuals were assuming that because we’re a Christian organization we must be intolerant of them… but THEY were being intolerant of me… and didn’t even see the irony in it.

I was mad enough to spit nails actually but chose to wish them well and then left the group. The one member tried to backpedal a bit, acting like what he was doing was a favor to me to attract more people.. but the truth of the matter is that these liberal thinking people were actually doing the very thing that they were afraid I would do to them.

Why is this okay?

“You better let them know you’re Christian so some unsuspecting family doesn’t come in and feel unwelcome because they don’t live by Christian values.” Really? Believe me… it’s obvious from our website who we serve. If that’s not you’re interested, scroll on by… but to think we’d make someone feel unwelcome?

To be fair, I’m sure there are people who call themselves Christian who are intolerant… and I get it… they’ve probably been burned by something in the past… but THEY themselves were the intolerant ones!

I am committed to the Lord… and I am committed to the business He has brought me to, until He calls me otherwise. By that same hand that has provided this far, He will continue to provide.

2 Timothy 3 summarizes: I belong to the Lord and I have all I need.

3 Be sure of this. In the last days hard times will come.

People will love themselves. They will love money. They will talk about themselves and be proud. They will say wrong things about people. They will not obey their parents. They will not be thankful. They will not keep anything holy.

They will have no love. They will not agree with anybody. They will tell lies about people. They will have no self-control. They will beat people. They will not love anything that is good.

They cannot be trusted. They will act quickly, without thinking. They are proud of themselves. They love to have fun more than they love God.

They act as if they worshipped God, yet they do not let God’s power work in their lives. Keep away from people like that.

They are the kind who go quietly into people’s houses. There they get foolish women to believe them. These women know that they have done many wrong things. And they want to do many kinds of wrong things.

They are always trying to learn, but never able to find out what is really true.

Jannes and Jambres were two men who were very much against Moses. In the same way, these men I am talking about are against what is true. They are men who have wrong thoughts in their minds. They do not believe.

But these men will not get very far. Everyone will see that they are wrong, just as people saw that Jannes and Jambres were wrong.

10 Timothy, you know my teaching and the way I lived. You know what I want to do and what I believe. You know my patience, my love, and my strength to bear trouble.

11 You know about my troubles. You know what happened to me in Antioch, in Iconium, and in Lystra. You know how badly the people treated me. But the Lord brought me safely through it all.

12 Yes, all who want to live a good life in Christ Jesus will be troubled by other people.

13 Bad men and those who fool other people will grow worse and worse. They will fool other people, and other people will fool them.

14 But you, Timothy, must keep on doing the things you have learned. You know they are right. You know who taught them to you.

15 From the time you were a child you knew the holy writings. They showed you how to be saved by believing in Christ Jesus.

16 All that is written in the holy writings comes from the Spirit of God. The holy writings are good for these things: to teach people, to show them when they are wrong, to make them see what is right, to teach them to do what is right.

17 In this way a person who belongs to God has all he needs. He is ready for every kind of good work.

Be blessed today, my friends, as I have been blessed.