The Magnum Opus

With gravity in His gaze, the Conductor raises His baton. Tap. Tip. Tap. Are the musicians ready? Yes, they poise, bows above strings, deep breaths in lungs, inclining toward the Master, eager for this grandiose adventure. The wand lifts and drops, bringing the strings to play. Horsehair and rosin vibrate soft and slow in a sweeping melody, ebbing and flowing. Then, gently, they approach like the waking dawn.

In come the woodwinds with their playful counter, complimenting their neighbors with the sounds of birds, twittering in treetops. Here and there, they innocently flit, lighthearted and free. Next, enter the shining horns; their arrival vibrant and full of life, with the push and pull of action.

All musicians have their part, and all play it well in an intricate tapestry of sound. They know the music well; they have read it every day. They read it now, finding new gems of expression secreted within its depths. They follow their Leader, their Shepherd, as He guides them through the masterpiece written by His own hand.

The symphony’s crescendos are building, building when discord enters in. Some players are not watching the Master with a keen enough eye. Others neglect the black notes upon the crisp white page. Both stray, some from the tempo, thus losing the music’s heart, and the others take too free an approach, wandering in their own tune. Notes clash, grotesque, churning, an agony to the ear. The cacophony seems endless, beyond hope of redemption.

When suddenly, guided by the Conductor’s hand, a single, salvific line enters. Its clear voice carries above the rest, pressing against the tide. In its sound is a sadness, bittersweet, but firm in its conviction. The other musicians wrestle against it, against one another in futility, still lost in their way, but the lone voice toils on with righteous rage, its conviction ever increasing. The drums pound, the timpani thunders, and the tumult grows until it cannot grow more. The pure instrument, leader of the lost, hope to the hopeless, is stabbed through with a maelstrom of hate unto death. It vanishes, finished. Reeling, the music dwindles and dies.

One beat, two beat, three beat. Wait. Is that the lonesome player singing? The same from before but changed. Quietly, so quietly, it re-enters, restarting its perfect tune. The other musicians listen and wait until its joy is too strong to ignore. They join in unison, one after the other, growing, building, blowing, pealing out the triumphant anthem, declaring the victory over chaos. All come together, and a beautiful harmony erupts. Glory rises, magnificent and complete, powerful, wondrous, compelling.

And the Master smiles at His unparalleled story, now resolved, despite wind and woe, to a heavenly perfection for all to enjoy, forever beyond end of time.

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