Your voice is meant to be your voice.
Let me repeat that for us both:
Your voice is meant to be your voice.
Did you know, the way the air moves past vocal cords is no different from one person to another? I used to work as a nurse in a department where I cared for patients as they had a test done that involved a small camera scope passing through their vocal cords to their trachea and on down to their lungs. I have seen dozens of vocal cords this way, and they all looked unremarkable for the most part. No gold-gilded cords to indicate a powerhouse vocalist, no “mediocre singer” vocal cords, and no raggedy-looking cords that were dead giveaway of a tone-deaf individual. Nope. Barring any sort of illness or abnormality, they looked all about the same. So what makes each voice different?
Could it be that your voice is connected to your soul and spirit by the Creator for exactly the intention and purpose He has ordained for your life?
Even if you consider yourself an “I can’t carry a tune” person, you STILL have a voice. No, maybe it won’t lead you down the path of a musical career, but it is still YOUR voice. God listens from Heaven to hear your unique voice as you call on Him, as you praise Him, as you thank Him, as you cry out to Him. It is not for our own glory, you see. He made us to sing, to talk, to laugh, to cry out.
A voice is not merely for entertainment, it is for communication.
It’s time we moved some air and brought the Kingdom of Heaven to earth through our songs and through the words we speak. “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over the present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12). Friends, what comes out of our mouths and enters the air around us matters. What and how we communicate matters. The words we speak, the songs we sing, they matter.
Why is it then that I hear over and over again from vocalists and musicians: “I hate my voice” or “I can sing but there’s nothing special about my voice” or worse yet, “I can’t sing like her/him”. The thing is, I am right there in the mix and have been one of the worst to discount my own voice and allow pride and vanity to keep me from singing because I don’t “sound” like someone else. It has caused me to drag my feet and blatantly rebel against the quiet whisper that has been nudging me along for the past decade. Just last night I started to cave back into the “maybe I’m not meant to be singing because my voice doesn’t sound like it should if it’s supposed to be good enough to be heard by others”. OoOf. I was overwhelmed by the shame of having fallen for the comparison game once again.
I am painfully learning that the comparison game is a waste of time. But I think it goes even deeper than just comparison. Stick with me for a minute more: if our voices are connected to our spirits and souls, and we display God’s beauty and glory when we pour ourselves out in song and in the words we speak, then it makes sense that the enemy of God’s glory, the devil, wants to keep us consumed with “how we sound”. He wants to keep us fixated on what we don’t have or what we think we need to be able to carry out what God has designed for our lives. Read that line again. If God has made us a unique way, with specific plans for us, and goes with us each step of the way, how can we discount what he has equipped us for, what he has entrusted us with, and moreover, how can we tell him that he is not able to fill in where we think we lack or worse yet, how can we not work diligently to do our best with what he has given us?
I tell you all this to humbly point out the tough lesson I am learning: if God has been calling me to something and I have been fighting it with doubts and excuses because I don’t think I’m “good enough”, I need to just stop. Stop fighting it. Stop running from it. I need to open my eyes and see that I am simultaneously “not good enough” and absolutely exactly good enough for what He has called me to. He fills in the gaps when I let him, when I step out and trust Him, and if he has called me to it, he will equip me for it! And He wants to do the SAME for YOU, whatever it is that you have been running from!
It’s scary to consider letting our walls (doubts) and crutches (excuses) be stripped away, because then we might actually have to do something with what he has given us and put our faith into action. Singing even when we don’t hear it in our own voices is the sort of surrender God wants from us. Let me tell you, it’s in that surrender that God shows up and makes something out of “nothing”.
So, what do you hear God calling you to do with your voice?