Team Italy’s first worship session was 2-4 AM on the first night of the Feast of Tabernacles. Here is our team:
Giuseppe – Bass player and musical director of the worship team
Roberto – Drummer and Giuseppe’s very talented son
Daniele – Electric guitar player
Felicity – Acoustic guitar player and worship leader
Bethany – Chorus and intercessor
Me – Chorus and intercessor (and possible dancer), also team leader in things non-musical
Upon our arrival, one of the German teams was playing. Not being a musician, I didn’t notice anything wrong until our bass player came to me and pointed out that there were no guitars, and three members of our team play guitar: electric, acoustic, and bass. What to do?
I sent the drummer up as our first musician to take over while we figure the rest of it out. He went up on the platform and behind the drum partition. The German drummer refused to let him slide in and take over. It was a surreal moment. Meanwhile the rest of the team began pacing in various parts of the room, while the German team played some soft background music, just right for making the changeover.
Just then the techie arrived. He told me that they don’t have any instruments to loan, which is not what I had been told. He made a call, and found us an acoustic guitar, which we put into Daniele’s hands. Giuseppe, clearly unhappy at first about not having an instrument to play, began to pray and worship from below the platform. Soon his worship became truly joyful.
So with drums and guitar, we made music for the Lord. Believe it or not, it was really nice, too! We (the three females) did a lot of riffing, which turned out really nicely. There were a couple of songs that Felicity launched into that were either not in the songbook or were too unfamiliar to me. At those times, I stepped from the platform, grabbed an Italian flag, and started dancing. By that time only team Italy was in the sanctuary, so that gave me a great deal of freedom.
Giuseppe stepped onto the platform and using Bethany’s microphone (the closest one at hand), prophesied that he now had a bigger vision than Italy, and that all this—even not having all our instruments—was a part of God’s plan.
At one point, Felicity had been riffing for a while in a very mellow mood, and I thought it might be too mellow for the hour. So I stepped back up onto the platform, riffing the title of a lively song that she had planned for our first session, but perhaps had forgotten about. She gave me a big grin, and launched right into it, which gave Roberto something to really sink his drumsticks into.
Before I knew it our replacements were in the room, dancing joyfully to our music and preparing to take the platform. I don’t know how two hours passed so quickly.
On the way out of the church building, Giuseppe told me, “We need to get instruments somehow.” Yes, somehow, we do need to get instruments. But thank You, Lord, for this first session and what it taught each of us about the heart of worship. The heart really is more important than the music, and we had plenty of heart. God is good!