Grade school in retrospect is like looking through a kaleidoscope of tumbling images. Memories fall chaotically around each other as I turn and turn that little cylinder filled with 24 crayon colors, autumnal fragrances, VCR’s, and Christmas pageants.
I remember standing in the school sanctuary, afternoon light floating in from above, as my first grade class tried to sing on key to the tune of “Lamb of God.” We were doing our best, although the transition from recess to organized singing significantly slowed down the efforts of our ever patient teacher.
When you are singing in a group, especially a group of 6-year old kids, it can be a real challenge to find your voice. You may think that you’re hitting those notes but in fact are probably, most certainly not.
Fortunately, I happened to be standing next to one of my friends whose talent for singing was already beginning to show, and I was spared the erroneous pride of success.
This friend of mine would continue to pursue and develop her talent throughout grade school. We even played in the school talent shows together; me, on my harp, and Ashley with her voice.
I’m slightly giddy to say that Ashley Kisner has continued her singing into high school and now performs and produces her own music. Is this a shameless plug? Yes, yes it is.
Sure, her voice may sound like the voice of a very hip and cool angel, but I’d like to focus on her determination. There are not that many first-graders who know exactly what they want to do with their life — and then stick to it for 13 years.
Sometimes it’s hard to find your own voice when there are so many others searching for their own. If we go back to the sanctuary that day, all those years ago, when my class was trying to sing the same notes at the same time, little did I know that there was a greater voice inside of all of us.
For some of us finding our voice may not be as straightforward as having an actual (fantastic) singing voice. My hope is that from Ashley’s story of self-determination, it might inspire some of you to take a leap of faith.
Pursuing your dreams is a terrifying and exciting adventure. However, with faith, courage, and determination we may all one day overcome the precipice of fear, free falling into the full expression of our own unique voices.
Although we have gone our separate ways some of Ashley’s recent work has caught my attention and I’d like to bring to all of yours today.
Below are two links. The first is of her official website and the second is a sample of her Christmas EP that is coming out over the holidays.
Check it out! If I didn’t say so already, she’s very talented 😉
Have a great day!
“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi