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Beautiful Music, Beautiful HeartBeautiful Music, Beautiful Heart
by Mike Ellis

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To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. (Romans 2:7)

    An old friend called me the other day. A great servant and super dad, his kids were “Suzuki Kids.” They began learning violin as young as 2 or 3-years old by holding a cigar box with a neck attached. Painted and filled with candy, once the children mastered holding it correctly, they could open the box, filled with a feast of surprises.

    If Shinichi Suzuki — the man who thought up “Suzuki Kids” — were still alive, he would be 104. Shinichi died in 1998 at the age of 99, but his methods of teaching music and good deeds have given him a legacy that will last long into the future.

    Suzuki’s father owned a factory that manufactured violins. As a young man, Suzuki just thought of them as toys, but one day his heart was touched by Schubert’s “Ave Maria” played by Mischa Elman. That compelled him to learn to play. By listening to recordings over and over and doing his best to imitate them, he taught himself to play the violin so it wouldn’t sound like a toy. He quickly learned it took more than a good ear.

“Wish for a beautiful tone, for a beautiful heart.”
    Suzuki’s philosophy, summarized in this translation of his Japanese poem, flourishes all over the world: “Wish for a beautiful tone, for a beautiful heart.” He believed all children could learn music if they were immersed in it the way they are immersed in language. He also believed that beautiful music arose from a beautiful heart. He was confident all children could develop that, too.

    Whether he knew it or not, Suzuki was forwarding a concept that is repeated often in the New Testament. God has blessed you with many talents. He has a high calling for you. You are special. You are important. But to fully realize God’s purpose for your life requires concerted effort, much practice, and a willingness to listen as God makes a beautiful heart in you.

    Seek out a beautiful tone in your life. Seek out a beautiful heart. By persistence in doing good, seek glory, honor, and immortality. In the end, you will receive the best surprise of all, an eternity in heaven with a Father who loves beautiful music and beautiful hearts!

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      © Copyright 2002, Mike Ellis, used by permission.

      Title: "Beautiful Music, Beautiful Heart"
      Author: Mike Ellis
      Publication Date: October 22, 2002


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