All God’s creatures got a place in the choir
Some sing low, some sing higher,
Some sing out loud on the telephone wires,
And some just clap their hands, or paws, or anything they got.
We emphasise differences – black or white, child or pensioner, sick or well, protestant or catholic, straight or gay, overweight or fit, well or sick…
This song recognises differences; differences are good; all have a ‘place in the choir’.
Listen to the top where the little birds sing
On the melodies with the high notes ringing,
The hoot owl hollers over everything
And the blackbird disagrees.
We’re not very good at differences. Some who are different make us feel uncomfortable; others make us feel threatened, angry, inferior… Some we just know – they’re wrong! We want everybody to be like us, think like us, act like us. It’s more comfortable, more convenient.
The Christian church has never been good at differences. It can’t cope with those who believe differently, think differently or practice their faith differently. If it can’t persuade uniformity it excludes and demonises the ‘different’.
Singin’ in the night time, singing in the day,
The little duck quacks, then he’s on his way.
And the otter hasn’t got much to say
And the porcupine talks to himself.
Jesus was outrageously inclusive. He welcomed the dishonest tax-collector, the religious-but-uncertain, the woman with a bad reputation. He deliberately chose outspoken Peter who would let him down and scheming Judas who would sell him out.
Musing… It isn’t that hands must be clapped in a particular acceptable rhythmic way; ‘paws and anything they got’ are welcomed. I’m wrong if I think that braying donkeys, croaking bullfrogs, mooing cows and sly weasels should be excluded for their tuneless contribution.
All God’s creatures got a place in the choir!