Sitting in the audience listening to the USC Group’s rendition of ’10’000 reasons to love our Lord’ in Barbados, many listening would be hard pressed to truly appreciate the challenges the group faced just to be present. This was Saturday 31st, 2018 at the East Caribbean Conference’s National Convention held at the Oldbury Campsite.
What were these challenges? Here’s just a few. Not all members made the trip, and some key members of the group were not there. Personal items for some members did not reach. Some equipment was left behind. Even before leaving some questions were raised as to whether some of the equipment could even be taken on the small aircraft. Traveling parents became team chefs by default and well laid plans seemed to be useless given the unexpected circumstances. Sure there were moments of frustration, but there were more moments where God’s amazing Providence shone through.
Put aside the challenges for a moment and take in the delivery of two items by the choir and orchestra during the Sabbath morning service. Sure the numbers were depleted but just listening to the two renditions, one would not know. The rendition medley ‘Bless the Lord oh my soul’ seems to have been delivered from the souls of musicians and singers alike giving thanks to their Creator for the highs and lows of the ongoing trip. The two pieces were rendered with gusto! They were well received by the packed congregation consisting of the main hall and two overflow tents. This was music, rather praise, not delivered with numbers, but with heart.
My mind reflected on the biblical story of Gideon, who to what seems like a humanly small number, delivered a great victory with merely 300 men. There were a few in the USC Trinidad contingent who’ve heard the full voice and musical complement. Amazingly, from the fifteen (15) choir members and musical ensemble members present, there was no difference! I think God understood, and angels helped out.
The USC Music group provided two pieces, the second immediately before the speaker of the day took to the podium. Barbadians love good music and the loud amens and extended clapping evidenced that the music was well received. Identifying myself as a group member many offered their thanks for the top class renditions. This was an opportunity to remind them not to miss the concert: there will be more!
I’ll share some comments from the local church members: ‘that music was real class’, ‘Hislop real like his music’, ‘boy dem people could real sing!’. But I like this one best, from a Barbadian with a ward presently studying at our main campus: ‘now THAT is what you call USC Music!”.