When the Rocks Cry Out

Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

Hector Berlioz was a freethinker. Born in 1803 near Grenoble, in southeastern France, by nature he was highly skeptical, even an agnostic. Yet, as one of history’s most innovative composers, he understood the significance of the church, and wrote several pieces around Christian themes. He usually wrote to fulfill a commission, but there was one notable exception: his Te Deum (which means “Glory to God”).

Berlioz seems to have written his Te Deum hoping the Emperor would order a performance. When there was no order, Berlioz decided to debut the work for the inauguration of a new organ in the Church of Saint-Eustache, near Paris. He still hoped, in vain, that the Emperor would attend. The Te Deum debuted in April 1855, its only performance in Berlioz’s lifetime.

Heard today, this magnificent composition requires enormous forces, including an organ, three choirs, and a huge orchestra. Listeners are rewarded with an overwhelming experience—words focusing on God’s glory, declaring, “We praise Thee, O God; we acknowledge Thee to be the Lord…Day by day we magnify Thee.”

Listening to this towering music, it’s hard not to think of Jesus’ comment when the Pharisees tried to silence the crowds: “If they keep quiet, the stones will cry out” (NIV).

Paul wrote, “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise” (1 Corinthians 1:27 NIV). He can inspire even a skeptic like Berlioz to write music like his Te Deum. God can make the rocks cry out, but He delights when people praise Him of their own free will.

Lift your voice and praise Him right now! Don’t wait for a church service. Remember: He delights in your praises!