You Just Never Do Sometimes…

So today I played a funeral, it was good, but kinda surreal! As a musician(who never turns down work) I find myself in all kinds of company, today was proof of it. Picture this(insert Sophia from Golden Girls quote here),Slick (from WWF) doing the eulogy and the family of the deceased as musically rich as Fort Worth can get! As the family processed in, I saw a few familiar faces and immediately put the ‘tighten up’ on-you don’t want to get scooted off the organ seat! lol Anyway, the decedent’s brothers are musicians and singers I used to play with a few years ago. Better than that, her brother taught Kirk Franklin(his nephew) to play the piano…say whatever you want, that’s interesting! Anyway, her cousin was a recording artist and was on the Malaco record label for a few years. All in all, there were a few other people that I knew but I just want to mention these few. As you know, church is HILARIOUS and I just gotta mention this-At the end, I was playing I’ll Fly Away and then out of nowhere I hear this voice…(yes I thought it was coming from the casket :() but somebody in the church was singing a totally different song! They were so loud that I changed songs(By and By) for a chorus,pulled out a few more drawbars and proceeded with I’ll Fly Away. If you gon’ just burst out into song, please let it at least be the RIGHT song!!!!!

As the funeral concluded, another musician approached me and made a few comments…”I enjoyed your playing, etc.” Then blew away by saying “you’re a musician’s musician. I didn’t really know how to reply other than the usual “to God be ALL the glory” but it did put a minor spring in my step! lol So, we all know people we can bestow this compliment on so let’s take some time and share what we really feel about our fellow musicians! Quit hating, and quit holding back good words-they both equal the same thing!

I reached my tag limit, but I wanna shout out to all my facebook friends, true musicians-keep up the good work!

June 3,2009

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I’m Taking God’s Rainbow Back!

Ok though I am never for police brutality, I was angered at the name of the bar the TABC/FW Police raided(2009). The Rainbow Lounge…seriously? Now you may say, “well the rainbow is the symbol for the gay/lesbian community. But, really? When did we concede that? Last time I checked a rainbow was a sign from God that He wouldn’t flood the earth again.

So once again I’m asking my like minded peeps(hopefully I know who you are), when did we give the rainbow away? Was it when homosexuality, as taboo as it is got in our space, in our families, in our schools? Its as if we said ” take the rainbow, just stay away from us!” Well, I’m going on record that I’M TAKING GOD’S RAINBOW BACK!!!! Will you take your portion of the rainbow as well…?

Terrible Preacher Support Group…

I just had the funniest of thoughts! How many of us know preachers that are just horrible or morally despicable(my favorite Daffy Duck word)? I was perusing facebook and came across a few and I thought, what if we started a support group to get them on point…then I thought, what if the support group was just a rouse to get them all in the same place and then kidnapped them? Where would we take them? How would we even get away with it? I don’t have a clue, just too busy trying not to disturb anybody as I laugh at myself being so silly!

Maybe we could fly them to a remote, desolate place. Then they would be forced to get to know God for real praying “Lord get us out of here!” Funny, just a thought. As I type, the Spirit has reminded me that the day will come when those self same false preachers and teachers will be victim of another rouse…that trip to Heaven only to hear “…depart from me ye workers of iniquity, I never knew you!” I guess we should stop laughing and pray for them before its too late.

PROOF!!!

I had a thought the other day. Of all the religions in the world, isn’t it amazing that only God has taken credit for creating the world? I mean Darwin and others are on the evolution thing, but over and over God questions His people…”where were you when I…”? I think that just about settles it for me!

That was my status the other day, did you see it? Well, I want to expound on that for a second. Recently as I have seen people straying from the faith I revisited my own doubts and dilemmas. Yes, I too questioned ‘GOD’ and what we call following Christ. I was stuck face down in the mire of my sin. Not only was I stuck, I really didn’t want to come out. This lead to a most profound experience with God himself. I asked myself the question: “why do we have to be saved?” I didn’t even ask to be born and now that I’m here I have to abide by these rules set by God…or go to hell? THAT’S NOT FAIR! I hated that premise and even attempted to let that disdain lead me away from what was instilled in me from birth.

My attitude toward God changed and right before I ‘left’ I asked God about Himself. Who are you? What gives you the right…? His answer? “LOOK UP.” Two words…not in the form of inspiration, but He asked “where does the sky end? What is keeping everything up there from falling down? Look all the way up here…you can’t see it can you…? That’s who I am!

You would think that I would’ve found the nearest monastery and apply for the lowest position available! Right? NO! I put the questions down and left it alone. But, we’re human and questions come back. I’m inquisitive and I like to rationalize things ll the time…this by the way is not faith!

I also had the question: “where did God come from?” Remember the children’s book “Are you my mommy?” Well, I was wondering who God’s ‘mommy’ was and I was led to ask other questions. Could it be that God created himself? Could it be that God was so fed up with Lucifer, ruler of the Pre-Adamite world that He fully destroyed it with a flood and led Himself to create a new earth and form man from dust? Could it be that hell is not intended for His human creation? There are many other questions out there and maybe you readers have other, more interesting questions but I think the more you ask, the more you’ll know. Of course the answer to all the above is…LET ME HEAR YOU SAY IT…!

I have a saying that if you ask the right question/pray the right prayer, you’ll always get the right answer. So, all of the searching I’ve done over time has lead me right to the foot of the the throne of grace…humbled because I am amazed the creator cares about His creation.

I didn’t care to proofread this, I just kind of put thoughts down as they came to me. Feel free to add/converse freely as you are lead. In times like these, it is the knowledge we the Saints of God have about God that will keep us stable in the face of the turmoil that is up ahead

Words of Wisdom

Having a conversation with local choir music legend and choir director Charlene Ayers after a concert and television taping, she made one of the most profound statements ever. She simply said ‘take what you have and make it what you want!'(paraphrased) This is profound because many aspiring artists and musicians need to hear this and put it into practice. As the Sunday Best production entourage left town, singers were left wondering what they were missing that caused them to not be selected to make the show. Truth is and as Antonio Johnson, who was a preliminary judge put it in his note ” Sunday Best will not keep you from shining. It just wasn’t your time yet.” What does one have to do with the other?

Well, when will you have a time? What can you do to ‘create’ a time for yourself? The bible does say that our ‘gift will make room for us'(Prov.18:16) but have you really taken a look at that passage as it pertains to yourself? The gospel message in song is broader than the recording industry itself. It’s broader than the thousands of prospective church audiences and millions of listeners. Additionally, what ‘room’ is there for you? Many aspring gospel singers and musicians struggle in this very area and have found little solace in the word.

Solomon offered this piece of advice in Proverbs 22:29: “Do you see a man diligent and skillful in his business? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men”(Amplified). What Solomon declares is that there is certainly work involved in whatever we do! In Proverbs 18;16 Solomon says that ‘our gift will bring us before great men’ but in 22;29 he says that diligence and skill will bring us before Kings. Psalm 75:6,7 tells us: “For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.” Ultimately, God is in control but we certainly have a responsibility in the matter,which goes back to Johnson’s words of wisdom!

In Matthew 25 14-30 Jesus tells a familiar parable where a man hid his one talent because it was less than the five and ten talents given respectively to the others. This is so much like aspiring artists and musicians in the gospel arena. We have to use what God has given us in order to get the fulness of it! How can ‘burying’ it make it greater?

Singers and musicians, seek God to bring out the best in you! Maybe you don’t consider yourself the best singer or musician. Maybe you don’t sing your best around other singers. Maybe you simply refuse to share the gift you know God has placed in your life. For others, the anointing rests on their life, but they refuse to cultivate the gift or even pursue God to learn how to be led how to flow in the fulness of His anointing. There is work to do and only the enemy is glorified when you fail to ‘put in the work’!

David said in Psalm 33:3: “Sing unto him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise.” This can only be done when a connection is made with what we have,what we aspire to have and what God’s purpose for our life is! “Take what you have and make it what you want!” Bring those requests to God and get  busy!!!! Keep those things lifted up in prayer, and the Lord will answer them(Matt. 6:6). Artists, it’s not enough to ‘shed’, rather make sure you have the right ‘tools'(God’s guidance, prayer, work ethic, etc) in your woodshed!

Lord,we need a plan!

This morning as I was praying, I asked God to give us a plan! Tired of the current financial situation and dismal job outlook I asked God to give us a plan. I didn’t even specify which kind of plan I was looking for. It’s just that bad…any kind of plan will work!

Mainly, we need a plan for how to proceed through the remainder of this season of life. Times are hard, school is an inconvenience(driving 40 miles each way) and music ministry is unfulfilled at the moment. I do believe God and I do know that He will take care of us. What I am unsure of is exactly where I took a wrong turn! God told Jeremiah that He knows His plans for us, plans to prosper us and not to harm us, but sometimes it’s hard to see just what His plan really is!

Taking care of my family is paramount and I shudder to imagine the day that I should fail them. Two children and a wife that loves (nearly) everything about me…yep, I need a plan! Scripture says ‘that without a vision, people perish'(paraphrased). Some commentaries specify that w/o a vision for following after God, people perish but both interpretations speak volumes! It has become clear that we need a vision moving forward. The original vision has undergone tremendous revisions but even those revisions don’t seem to be holding up in this season.

So as I told the Lord this morning, it’s time for a (new) plan! However the ‘plan’ manifests itself, we need it. Whether it’s revisiting the original ‘plan’,renewed dedication to a strict budget, whether it’s a ‘plan’ to pack up and relocate, whether it’s a plan to simply wipe out the old plan and start over…it’s painfully clear that we need a (new) plan!