Monday, April 28, 2008

"back in the sadde again..."

WOW...what a great time leading worship this weekend. I haven't "technically" done it since July 1, 2007 at my old church, so it has been a while. It was just so comfortably exciting up other way to describe it.

The first couple songs rocked: "The Difference" and "You Are Good"

The morning crowd was hard to get juiced up. When you're doing a song that involves congregational participation, it helps to have people participating. The second celebration was off-the-hook. To be able to just hold the mic out and really feel the people worshiping is something I'll never get tired of experiencing.

The Crowder song "Wholly Yours" is great in the chorus, but parts of the verse and the pre-chorus are tough for folks to sing unless they know the song really well. "Once Again" probably wouldn't be in my short list of songs to select, but it was a perfect fit during communion.

Since I have started taking guitar lessons, I notice my left hand moving into chord positions while I'm on "Wholly Yours" during the chorus fingering the "D", then to the "A", then "E". It probably looked strange, but I'm starting to feel it!

Looking forward to doing it again soon and rocking out with my new friends.

Monday, April 21, 2008

muscle memory

My fingertips are numb now and forming callouses. I play an hour every night and my muscles are getting quicker about changing keys and remembering where G, C, D, Dm, A, Am, E, Em, and F hide.

Our worship pastor asked me to lead this weekend, so I'm going through the songs making sure it's all within my range. Excited and anxious about it since I haven't lead worship since July 1 last year at my old church. Maybe this will be the last time I lead at our new church!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

1st Lesson

I made it through my first guitar lesson. The format is going to suit me just fine. The plan is not to walk through beginner lesson books like Mel Bay or Hal Leonard, but to work on getting me to play songs as soon as possible. So, I learned two chords (Em and D-6/9F#) which are two finger chords. The very cool thing about these two chords are the fact that they are the only chords in the song "A Horse With No Name" by America (one of my favorite songs).

My instructor has been playing for many years, has a few albums out, and is also into Christian music. He taught me a couple other chords that are used in many songs, so this week I am working on G, D, and C. I think 90% of Neil Diamond's songs use these three chords, so my brother will be pleased!

I spent the past couple nights working out "This Is Love" (Terry Butler/Mike Young), "You Are So Good To Me" (as done by Third Day), "Communion" (Third Day), and "You Are Worthy of My Praise" (Jeremy Camp). There are some books and DVDs at the library I have put on hold to supplement my lessons with, so I'm psyched about absorbing as much as I can.

My brain is already changing. I typically will either sing or watch the drummer play during the worship set. Today at church was different. I found myself watching all four of the guitar players looking at their hands and checking out techniques. Hopefully the light will pop on in my head (and hands) and playing will eventually be second nature to me.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

i bought a new friend

I finally did it! It took two shopping trips a more cash than I thought it might, but I finally found my new friend. I bought a guitar!

Not just any guitar. It's an Art & Lutherie. Made in Canada, eh? I looked at Taylor, Takamine, Ephiphone, and Seagull. The Art & Lutherie is made by Godin who also makes Seagulls. Not high end, but in came down to feel and sound quality. I'm not sure why, but I was drawn to it.

A man came in with his two young sons, had them strum a couple (they didn't know how to play) and bought a $1800 Epiphone. I bet they shopped for a total of 6 minutes. Maybe I was being a bit analytical or over thinking the whole thing, but I took my time.

The store is also where I'm going to take lessons, so I'm waiting on a call today for them to pair me up with a teacher. I can't wait to get to know my new friend.

Monday, April 7, 2008

...the call

i had prayed boldly about my family's health
and all of those things that so easily
fall from my lips

a continual stream of the familiar
having seen Him come through time and again
afraid to challenge something new

the weakness was in me bound in silver chains
of my own inability to see the treasure just
outside my cell door

even behind my eyelids in my dreams i felt His hand
but in my physical shell where numbness barely
allows a tug from the supernatural i heard the small ring

awoke to sunlight, smiled and lifted my face to the Son
turned my head and as I glimpsed the phone
it rang

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Robe Rules

Not sure what category this thread falls under. It should probably go with personal hygiene, fashion, or perhaps personal consideration of others.

As the alluring title suggests, I am in need of either formulating or being made aware of some rules regarding robes. I understand and have adhered to certain rules such as not drinking (heavily) before noon, not wearing white before Memorial Day, and not filling up the pool until after the first frost. Having the opportunity to work from home typically four out of five days per week, I find myself rolling out of bed, grabbing a cup of coffee, and spending most of the day sitting in front of my laptop in my robe. The issue comes from the looks I get and sometimes the feeling of scumming around.

I like showering as much as the next guy, but I typically work out in the afternoon or very late at night. Showering in the morning and again later just seems like a waste. I'm fairly new to the Green Living movement, so I can use water usage as an argument for staying in my robe.

One of my Twitter pals @Worshipcity suggested that a robe can be considered an "indoor jacket". According to him, "you can wear it all day long...inside. You step one foot outdoors in 1 and it's to the Looney Bin!". I like that rule...except it gets broken when I go to grab the paper or the mail at lunch. Look left, look right, look left again -- then sprint to the mailbox before the neighbors catch a glimpse of a green flannel blur.

Rules are made for breaking. ROBE WEARERS UNITE!!!