The title of tonight’s post is the title of one of the songs in a very famous musical made in the 1960’s – you have probably guessed it by now – “The Sound of Music”. It was the story of Maria von Trapp and her journey from a convent to become the caretaker of the von Trapp children and, eventually, the wife of Georg von Trapp, patriarch of the family. The reason that all this is noteworthy this evening is that Maria was born 109 years ago today – and as you will see, she really did have to climb a few mountains in her life.
While many of us have become familiar with the family through the movie, starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer, the reality is quite different from the depiction in the film. Maria was to stay with the family for 10 months and left the convent to take care of one of the children who was ill – not the entire family. But after 10 months, she had hopelessly fallen for the children and Georg had hopelessly fallen for Maria. While it is true that he proposed to her, Maria was not apparently in love with Georg quite yet but eventually came to love him more than any other man before or after in her life.
It is also not widely known that Georg and Maria had an additional 3 children together, bringing the family to 10 children total. By the way, the names and sexes of the children were changed for the movie! Also, the family did perform together for quite some time before the Nazi occupation and they eventually fled to Italy and, then, America. Many members of the family became citizens of the US in 1948 and somewhere along the line, Georg was offered the chance to sing at Hitler’s birthday party but declined the invitation.
When you read the history of the family, it becomes quite evident that they were quite a religious group of people. Maria was destined for the convent before falling for the von Trapp children and Georg had a very strong faith, leaning on God for many of the decisions that the family ultimately made – including their coming to America and putting down roots in Stowe, Vermont.
Certainly, life would have been easier for all of them had they just followed the path of least resistance. But that’s not the kind of people they were. Georg and Maria had very strong faith convictions and many times in their lives, they stood on what they believed God wanted them to do rather than follow the easy path. Several of their children did extensive missionary work and major decisions in the lives of the von Trapp’s were always put before the Lord. So even when they wanted to take the easy way, they consulted the Lord – it is difficult to not admire their loyalty and conviction to God.
And God got them through. The verse for this evening is from Proverbs 3:5, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding…” It worked for Maria and Georg and can also work for you. My encouragement this evening is that God wants us to depend on Him and consult Him for the decisions in our lives. My prayer is that you will prioritize your life in such a way that shows others how much you value the word of the Lord. It is just one of the ways that you can live your faith – just like Maria did. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…