by Vickie Watson, Public Relations Specialist

Today, I had the distinct honor of attending the Countywide Gospel Singing for all of the Marshall County Senior Citizen Centers. What a joy it was to be in a room full of precious folks I consider my friends.

I was invited to sing with the Guntersville Senior Center, and we were the first group on stage (after a special guest group). As we began to sing, I looked out over the crowd and saw pure joy on faces all across the room.

I think joy begets joy. You see, I love to sing. and I fully believe music truly is soothing to the soul. At least it is soothing to my soul. Music moves me and speaks to me in a way like nothing else on this earth. It is a healing balm on a difficult day. There are times, as I am driving down the road and a song will come on the radio with the perfect message. Do you know what I mean? Perhaps I was struggling on that particular day about some aspect in my life, and the song by Mercy Me, Flawless comes on with lyrics such as, “No matter the bumps, no matter the bruises, no matter the scars, still the truth is the cross has made, the cross has made you flawless. No matter the hurt, or how deep the wound is, no matter the pain, still the truth is the cross has made, the cross has made you flawless.” Some days that is exactly what I needed to hear.

As I think about how music speaks to my soul, it brings me to reflect on the idea Music Therapy for our patients in Shepherd’s Cove. There have been times I have been asked to join my coworkers for an impromptu singing in a patient’s room. You cannot imagine what a privilege it is join our voices together for the soothing of a patient. I have seen patients’ faces relax, and a calm fall over their countenance as we began to sing familiar hymns. I can recall one specific time I was called upon to join coworkers to sing at the request of one of our volunteer chaplains. He had been spending some time with this sweet lady, praying with her, holding her hand and, well, singing to her. He took a moment to ask one of our social workers to call together a group of HMC staff to sing for this lady.

(Side note: You may not be aware of this, but HMC has an entire group of people who truly love to sing and have a really nice sound when everyone gets together.)

As we entered the patient’s room, a hush fell. Our CEO, Rhonda Osborne, approached the patient, took her hand and said, “Mrs. Smith (not her real name), we are all here to sing for you. Would that be okay?” The lady simply turned her head toward our CEO, and that was our cue to begin. I remember distinctly singing “Amazing Grace” among several other old, familiar hymns. It is times like these that emotions often overtake me. As I stood there in the presence of this precious lady, I was so humbled, and so honored to have the opportunity to share that moment with her and my coworkers. I was in tears, literally. I was singing with all of my heart, all the while with tears streaming down my face. Sometimes as we are ministering to others, we get ministered to in the process…joy begets joy.