Simplicity of Legacy

This is me and my chubby partial feeling fingers. If you can wiggle your fingers you can make music….eventually

Mom was a beginners piano teacher. She influenced the world. I will use myself as an example as all 7 of us siblings took lessons and I qualify as the least talented in my eyes. While you read, please put on this youtube video of me playing my rendition of moms favorite old hymn. This is a bit of an unconventional way to blog so let me know if it was worth the effort to play and read at the same time.

Now this is important! Please Open another window on your computer, go here Click and start Video, then come back to read the blog while playing…trust me it will make sense later

VS 1 “Tis so Sweet to trust in Jesus, Just to take him at his word” (Musically hesitant)

Well mom thought so all her life. She told me that God had a plan and could be trusted completely. I was 11 years  lying in the hospital, both arms in casts after a saw blade came off a machine and cut both my arms to the bone on the inside near the elbow crease where arteries and nerves are housed . My median nerves were completely severed (a specialist tied them together). I couldn’t feel below the elbows on both hands.

“Just to Rest upon His promise, Just to Know thus saith the lord” (Musically slow but getting there)

Mom did not waver in her faith and trust in Jesus even though the hard times were sometimes very hard. She loved us and sometimes would cry when trying to discipline us (for our good, but didn’t seem so at the time). She had God, her huge garden, a piano, a community full of kids needing lessons and seven kids who ate very well off her cooking.

Chorus: “Jesus Jesus how I trust him” (Musically a little more sure and quite simple)

Even when we seemed to be wandering down the road away from God (she was not silent here). My siblings each have their own decision making and Mom stories. We would need many a week of campfires to sit around and tell those tales.

“how I’ve proved him o’er and o’er”  (musically a few extra notes added)

I was mad at God. I blamed God for allowing my hands and arms to be useless, have no feeling or cramping phantom feelings. My muscles acted as if there was no one in charge. it would take 3 years to do a push-up and pull-up in gym class. I hated the doctor for telling my mom (which gave her way too much leverage) I would have clothes pins for fingers if I did not learn to play the piano or learn how to type.


“Jesus Jesus precious Jesus, Oh for grace to trust him more” (Musically ending a thoughtful phrase)

Mom was gentel, kind and cruel all at the same time. I sat at the piano for hours it seemed. “God has a plan” she would say. I was good at saying “ya” a hundred different ways. I didn’t see any plans coming down the pike anytime soon. I couldn’t feel the keys. My fingers didn’t really work. It took me 10 hours to play a little tune when others could do it in 20 minutes.

VS 2: “I’m so glad I learned to trust him, precious Jesus, Saviour, Friend” (Musically changes keys and begins an uplifting era of life)

I began to test the waters of life and one day made my choice. As a teenager I Chose to Follow Jesus. I knelt on the floor of our barn and told him I was all in. Like Mom and Dad and a few other people I knew, I was all in.

“and I know that thou art with me, wilt be with me to the end” (Musically sure, ready to run off a cliff with the music)

It was a learning struggle more complicated than cliff diving (which I would later try); it was more like making a run off the cliff in order to clear several boulders below and reach the deep safe water 50 feet below (tried this also). God proved himself in countless ways. Like Mom I was learning how to fly with trust even in the crashes.

Chorus: Jesus Jesus how I trust him, How I’ve proved him o’re and o’re (Musically marching through life) 

We all got older. Mom began losing her memory. Quietly memories were stolen as the world marched on. I began to renovate this old hymn to play for mom, hoping she would be proud of her son.

“Jesus Jesus precious Jesus, Oh for grace to trust him more.” (Musically challenging and dynamics added for the massive ups and downs of life)

Mom got a fast acting cancer. Her prayers had been that she would not forget her kids and grandkids before she died. She didn’t. I played this song for her as she was in her wheelchair by the piano. She was all there and more. It was not just a “favorite” hymn. It was a lifes song, unwavering in a dimming body.

Chorus again:  Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!          (Musically recapping moms life. I end with the final resolve chord then a little run up the piano as she leaves us to be with her Jesus, savior, Friend.)

I am not an accomplished piano player. My fingers can play some music and I have partial feeling in my hands and arms. This blog is not just about mom or about me playing the piano. I would like it to be a challenge to you the reader and listener in this way: that you would consider living your life all in. the only way I know how is to walk, listen and talk with Jesus, Savior, Friend daily. The proof is in the consistent upgrades that God’s Spirit brings about in our thoughts, speech and character of our being from within. This is The Simplicity of Legacy. 

I hope this in a small way can be a part of Gods Legacy in you. get to the deep and safe waters my friend! Eternity awaits us all, choose and follow Jesus. No hesitation, no excuses. No wallowing in the “this happened to me stuff”. Tis so Sweet to trust in Jesus (till you close your eyes the last time sweet).


Disclaimer: I do not have video capabilities with WordPress which made this a little harder for you the reader, sorry. It was an experiment, let me know if it kind-a sort-a worked. I tried it on myself but I know the song too well. 

28 thoughts on “Simplicity of Legacy

  1. Listening to you play makes me miss you guys more, and reading your blog makes me remember God has a plan even though we don’t always understand it. Bit we need to trust that he knows what is right for is. Thanks again for teaching and reminding me of this.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. One of my favorite songs in the whole world. I’m impressed–and thankful–that after such injuries you are able to play like that. Just beautiful. Thank you for visiting and subscribing to one of my blogs……..Blessings always.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Shirley, You have no idea how pertinent your blog was. perfect timing, Gods timing. I had to write about it and I hope you don’t mind me putting a link to your blog on mine on “being intentional”. Thanks also for your kind words on my playing.


  3. Gary, you play beautifully!! Watching and listening, no one would suspect the super-human perseverance it took for you to achieve such excellence. Praise God for your mother! Thank you for sharing your story and her influence in your life. Through your post, she is now an inspiration and encouragement to many others–including me!


    1. Thanks you so much nancy, I am very humbled. I think someday we will get to see the threads woven from the beginning of time that we were privileged to be a part of.


  4. Gary, I absolutely loved it! I could not do the piano listening and the reading at the same time, though, not because of technical difficulties, but because I can’t do words against words. Since I know the words to this hymn, since I grew up singing the hymns at home, in the car, and at church, I can’t read the blog and listen to the song at the same time. So, I listened to the song first, then read your blog post, which was beautiful!

    Your playing reminds me of my mom’s piano playing. I don’t have a recording of her playing the piano, though I wish I did, but I found this lady on YouTube who plays just like my mom did. My mom used to play this song every Sunday morning when I was growing up, and this lady plays it almost exactly the same way that she did.

    If you record more of your playing, let me know. I would love to listen to it. I especially like watching your fingers on the keyboard as you play.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Gary, this was beautiful ~ your music and the tribute to your mom. I do not see a picture here. If you go to your YouTube, click on Share underneath, copy the link, then you can paste it here. Subscribed to your channel. This hymn is an old favorite. I am using it as the music to my hymn “A Sinner’s Prayer.” Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I think I have 3 accounts or something on you tube. Each time I record something I cannot log in so I create another account. For instance, in January I created a video because I had posted song lyrics and a story about it…several wanted to hear it so the link was put at the end of the blog… It’s somewhat contemporary.

    Song on you tube…
    Someday I hope to learn how to put them all together. Maybe


  7. Not sure how I missed this Gary but I saw it tonight and I had your music going in the background. As I was reading and hearing you play I couldn’t help but think of the countless hours and the faith that were behind all of it and I would never have known, had you not shared it. And how God honoured that faith. Really amazing. Thank you and praise God for His faithfulness.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thank you Bruce. Music was God’s tool to save my fingers from being like clothespins with not feeling or usefulness when I had both arms almost cut off at the elbows from an accident…It’s strange how god allows such things and then uses them in our lives.


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