A few years ago at Sunday Mass the priest gave a homily on the importance of sharing our talents. He told this story:
One day in orchestra practice, a flute player was feeling that she was unimportant, or at least non-essential. She played a piece along with the cymbals, brass, drums and loud percussion but didn’t think her small part added much or could even be distinguished from the stronger sounding instruments. She decided that at the climax, when all these instruments were at their height, she would just lift the flute to her lips at her cue but not play.
So the moment came and she only pretended to play. All of a sudden, the conductor yelled, “Stop, stop!” Confused, everyone stopped playing their instruments. “Where’s the flute?” queried the conductor. “I didn’t hear the flute.”
The priest went on to say that many times we think our talents are small and lacking value. So we hide them away, discounting their importance. But God asks, “Where’s the flute?”
As we play the part God has assigned to us, piping in our unique sound and music, we enrich others in ways we may never realize. A ready smile, a listening ear, a kind gesture, a hidden act of kindness, a monotonous and repetitive job done faithfully and well — all these things may not stand out but if left undone, our world would be a darker place.
The next time you feel small or insignificant or lacking in gifts, think of the flute. Your contribution may be just what is needed to make the song complete.
O sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord, all the earth.