As we piled into the bus early that Sabbath morning, I wondered if we were ready. Weimar Academy was presenting its first concert at Sacramento Central SDA Church. In addition, we were going to sing for Sabbath School, church service, as well as an evangelistic meeting. And we weren’t ready. We had worked hard to learn our music, and the Lord had already blessed us with focus and efficiency. But there was still so much we could improve.

Sabbath School and church passed. God’s blessing had been with us as we sang, but we still had work to do before the concert. After potluck, we toured Messiah’s Mansion, a life-size model of Moses’ Old-Testament sanctuary. We learned about how it symbolized the heavenly sanctuary and how it demonstrated God’s sacrificing love for us. The whole time, my mind still pondered over the concert looming ahead. Were we ready? Would an hour of practice be enough?

The tour took longer than expected. We got back to the church with less practice time than we had planned for, and we weren’t able to go through every song. During the prayer time that we were given before the concert, I poured out my heart to God. “Lord, You know that we’ve done our best, but we are far from ready. Yet, when we are weakest, You shine through brightest. Please work through our meager efforts and use us to touch lives tonight.”

The Lord blessed abundantly. Our rough spots smoothed out perfectly. God’s presence guided us to hit the high notes. The choir, orchestra, piano, and percussion all stayed together. It was a beautiful first concert. But more importantly than anything else, people were blessed immensely by listening to the message of Christ in our music.

As we piled into the bus late that Saturday night, I reflected on how God had worked through us despite the fact that we weren’t ready. Instead of sending up pleas for help, I was now breathing prayers of thanksgiving. God had made everything come together both for us and for the people we touched. When we were weakest, God had shone through brightest.

– Zoe Shiu