In the heart of Daytona Beach, Florida, an event took place that struck chords both musical and spiritual. It was the Barbershop Harmony Society’s 2023 Midwinter Convention, and the ensemble known as Party of Five lifted spirits through their resounding rendition of “What A Wonderful World” by Louis Armstrong. Their harmonious voices weren’t just melodious, but they echoed a biblical worldview that insists, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands” (Psalms 19:1).
Adorned in coordinated attire, the members of the quartet sang the iconic song, composed by George David Weiss and Bob Thiele in the 1960s. Originally an ode to unity and love in a time of political and racial tension, the song captured the spirit of recognizing the divine in the everyday. As the Bible states, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17).
The quartet’s take on the song was uplifting, leaving visible joy on the faces of both the performers and the audience. Music, in this moment, became a mutual ministry. As the Apostle Paul advised the Ephesians, “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord” (Ephesians 5:19). It was as if the venue transformed into a sanctuary, where people communed not just with each other, but with the Divine, feeling a gratitude akin to Armstrong’s lyrical words: “I see trees of green, red roses too… and I think to myself, what a wonderful world.”
Though the song met a humble reception in the United States when it was first released, it ultimately found its way into hearts worldwide, ranking on charts in various countries and even receiving a spot in the Grammy Hall of Fame by 1999. This longevity speaks to the universal appeal of acknowledging life’s blessings—something deeply ingrained in Christian belief. As Christ Himself assured us, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10).
So, listen to the strains of “What A Wonderful World” as performed by Party of Five, and let it enrich your heart. Allow the music to echo the everlasting words of the Scripture, resonating not just in your ears but also in your soul.