Musicians converged from all over in the Cotswolds last weekend for a time of remarkable blessing on both music and fellowship levels. The Lord had to overcome some remarkable challenges! We had mentioned the clay pigeon shoot last week: but there were additional challenges to face.

Lufthansa flights to Birmingham airport had been cancelled due to industrial action – and we had four people booked to come from Germany with them. One had to drive through the night to Frankfurt to catch a connection from there. By the Lord’s mercy all arrived safely, as did Francis from snowbound Scotland, though very late at night, when he was met by Ros who had stayed on in Birmingham after work.

When I made my way into the beautiful tithe barn at the House of the Open Door Community, I was dismayed to hear a continual roaring sound (it was like a train!) which the wind was making as it buffeted the high rafters. It was like being on the poop of a galleon in a storm, and quite impossible to record in. With considerable ingenuity we shoehorned ourselves into the beautiful Pottery Shop, which makes such delightful creations for the Lord, and we reassembled all the recording equipment in there, including a full-sized harp. It was a great success and we were more than intimate together!

People from the community told me that they have never known it so noisy in there before. Mercifully the wind had died down by the following day, enabling us to move back into the barn in time to receive the huge marimba and other musicians with it!

Meanwhile the sons of two of our string players were taken ill, which left us with a critical hole in our forces. (The way we were set up, one person’s absence was enough to cause major problems). Once again, the Lord came to the rescue. Unbeknownst to me, the son of the couple who were hosting seven of our team, Matthew Deakin, turned out to be a Grade 8 violinist who plays for the Oxford University orchestra, and he stepped in at no notice to play for us for a few hours until the regular players turned up. Another of the violinists was more than adequate to take the viola part, and we were covered.

The Lord is so ingenious – as indeed He needed to be. The weather conditions were so extreme that the water table and sewage flooded, meaning that no running water could be used in the Guesthouse we were staying in for the whole of Saturday! Praise God: that got sorted too.
We had been aiming at the stars, and if we didn’t quite reach Sirius we most certainly soared a long way beyond the planets! You are in for an enormous feast of music and worship in the months ahead. Our repertoire ranged from beautiful harp concertos (and individual pieces) through Brahms’ stirring string sextet, to exquisite piano pieces, to Scott Joplin and very moving pieces by Linda and Carol.

The first piece we are releasing from the weekend is an instrumental version of a beautiful song that Lindsay Cummings, Francis’s wife, sang impromptu in the Spirit at a conference back in 1990. The words are moving: ‘To those who seek my face. I will reveal my heart.’
Instrumental Version
We are also attaching the original song.

To those who seek My face
I will reveal my heart
Come see with my eyes
and let me give you tears

Take my hand and let me show you
Those who suffer in the dark
In silence and confusion
innocent lives torn apart

To those who seek my face
I will reveal my heart
Come see with my eyes
And let me give you tears

Let me forge in you a sword
To set the captives free
Be a channel of my power
And my love to those who are bound by fear

To those who seek my face
I will reveal my heart
Come see with my eyes
And let me give you tears
Come see with my eyes
And let me give you tears