At My Command


When I was a senior in high school, I entered a talent show. I had a good voice and I chose to sing “People” from Funny Girl. The room was loud with applause when I sang the last note. I didn’t win. The award went to a pianist. They told me that my talent was natural and, apparently, this girl had worked very hard to master the piano. At the time, I was a little bitter about that decision. However, I see it all now, as my life has unfolded from a vocal point of view.

I went on to study voice for many years. I became very much in command of my naturally good instrument. For the most part, I could depend upon it, although there were a few areas, where I still had doubts, my very high range being one of them. Still, I kept going to master myself. For many years, I sang with ease and grace. In some ways, I took for granted that my voice was just there.

Then for a about ten years, I gave up singing as a part of my life. Although I sang on occasion, other things were more important to me. I also had lost my confidence due to the opinion of a few people whom I held in high esteem. No one had never not liked my voice. I’m not sure which came first, but the result was I just stopped singing.

When I moved here to the Island, I sang on occasion at the Center. People seemed to appreciate it and encouraged me to sing more often. I even went as far to produce two cabaret acts with my husband. However, I never felt in command of my instrument as I did long ago. I was in fear of cracking and not having enough breath to hold a note, etc. Then, one day something changed.

I decided to do my own one person show to heal my voice and my life. It was one of the hardest things I every did, because I had to overcome all my doubts and fears. I had to jump into the abyss of my life and trust that I would rise out of it. I went to work. I practiced every day just like back in my younger years when singing was so important to me. I put everything I had into it, including a tremendous amount of prayer work, meditation and visualization. I slew every dragon that showed up in the guise of insecurity, old voices, doubts and fears. It was one of the loneliest journeys I’ve every taken. I was alone with my voice. Could we become friends again? Could I trust it?

Well, finally, on August 29 and 30 of 2019, I proved that spiritual thought force was more powerful than material resistance. I, once again, had command of my instrument. Now, I do not want to lose that again. I don’t know what the future holds, but I know right now that I am being inspired to keep singing, to keep practicing, to keep on top of my voice, and to enjoy the journey.

The judges of that talent show told a truth. There is a difference in having a talent and actually mastering it. This is true in all our spiritual work. We are all born the same with the same innate power to express life. The same laws of cause and effect govern us. It is the use we make of them, the practice we put in to ourselves, the mastering of our minds, the moving from our minds to our hearts that determine our destiny. Are we in command of ourselves? Are we well practiced and prayed up? Can we depend on ourselves in times of challenge? Do we know all we require is right here ready to be used at our command?  Do we know that we know?

If we do, that’s great. Then, all we have to do is stay warmed up, just like I have to keep my voice warm. However, if the answer is no, we have work to do. We are either going to be in command or the outside world will command us. It’s our choice. It’s a practice that we are all capable of. The time spent practicing can be lonely, and we can only do it ourselves. However, the journey and the outcome is the life of a powerful spiritual being who knows who she is no matter what life presents. The reward is a spectacular life.

We are each our own genie. Our wish or dream is at our command. It lies dormant in the recesses of a mind that we have yet to tap. That mind is unlimited and at our command.

Love and Aloha,

Rev. Rita

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