Bad Cat

“It began during Sunday morning worship, as my voice crackled, not just once or twice but numerous, uncontrollable times. Every time I opened my mouth, my voice cracked.

Then, I heard the question from God. He said to me, “So why don’t you want to take the gift of sound – your voice, the voice I gave you – and learn how to use it?”

Let me go back for a quick moment:

Earlier that morning, I had asked our Pastor, “Do I have to be there on Friday for the Freedom to Worship Workshop?” My thoughts were, “Well I know my voice isn’t pleasing to others, but I know You, God, created it, so it must be pleasing to You. Plus, I sing without any hang-ups!. I sing and twirl and praise and love You, Lord! Also, I have the kids and I don’t leave them at home by themselves after dark.”

Our Pastor’s answer was that no of course I didn’t have to be there, and he briefly described the class. “Good,” I thought, “I don’t need to be there!”

So now back to the statement God had said to me: So why don’t you want to take the gift of sound – your voice and learn how to use it?

Complete silence…and my heart replied, “Yes, Papa, I will go.”

During the beginning of the class as Joanna was speaking, I felt pain and tears just started rolling down. “Great,” I thought, “Now I need a tissue and the tissue box is way over there at the end of the row!” My second thought was, “Now I have to get up and get them and I hope no one notices how distraught I am!”

Why I was so upset, was that God was revealing new land mines, actually buried land mines. Land mines stemming from as early as first grade. You see, for 6 years I spent a few days a week in school, during a full class period, with a speech therapist one-on-one, as well as in a group session. I so hated (yes, hate is a strong word) being called out of class to go work with the speech therapist. I spent many hours in school, and at home, looking in a mirror forming letters: S, L, R, TH, O, OO and the list goes on.

With Joanna’s kind and loving voice, God was reassuring me that it was going to be alright. Then, God brought me through another hidden land mine: nasal.

I recall, during my freshman year of high school, my mom took me to a specialist because, after all those years of speech therapy, my speech still didn’t appear to be good enough. Who’s idea that was, is beyond me. The specialist asked my mom to leave the room so he and I could have a conversation. The doctor apologized to me, saying that the only reason he agreed to see me was that it was implied that I had a serious speech problem, due to being slow. The diagnoses was that I sound as I do is because I speak thru my nasal passages. So all those years of speech, and all those moments of feeling less because I sounded, and still sound, different than anyone in my family, is because I am different.  Hey, we all are different!

God has revealed hidden treasures within me. He has released  beliefs and lies that I had allowed to take me captive. He has given me hope to want to learn more about my vocal instrument.

I  praise the Lord and thank each and every one that was a part of the Freedom to Worship Workshop for your shoulder to weep on and your hearts to rejoice with. For me, it was certainly humility on the line, trusting in God’s release.”

-“Bad Cat” by Janine Knecht, 12/13

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