>> 160 choir members, lined up against the walls of a huge room, praying before we went onstage. “Lord, thank you for this joy that we are experiencing right now…”
>> 160 choir members walking down a long hall in two rows, parting ways at the end of the hall, one row going to stage left and the other to stage right. The energy at that moment, right before you go onstage, is like nothing else. No butterflies, no shaking hands, just this feeling that at this moment, you could easily run a marathon and then some, but you don’t want to, because what you are about to do instead is SO much more fun!
>> We joined the St. Louis Jesuits on the chorus of the opening piece. The joy and energy flowing through me and around the hall as we opened our mouths and sang, “Let us build the city of God, may our tears be turned into dancing…”
>> “When the darkness falls on my final days, take the very breath that sang your praise. Give me nothing more than your love and grace. These alone, O God, are enough for me.”
>> “Lift Up Your Hearts to the Lord,” starting with a drum solo, followed by an electric guitar and instrumental intro, and then a flood of choral sound.
>> People in the audience standing and reaching their hands up to God as we sang “There is a River.”
>> The entire audience standing, swaying, and singing the final verse of our final encore, “Holy God, We Praise Thy Name.” Even more people putting their hands up. Building and building through the final chord.
>> Applause, cheering, standing ovations…and not a single person accepting the accolades for himself, but every person reflecting it to the others onstage, and offerring it all to God. For He can “take the very breath that sang His praise,” because His love and grace are all we need.