Uncomplicating Your Calling

Uncomplicating Your Calling

"You want to learn drums, right?"

I eyed my youth leader wondering what question might be lurking behind this question. It was a regular old Sunday morning in my early teen years and I was wandering around waiting for the church service to start.

I nodded hesitantly.

"How about today?"

The service was starting in approximately ten minutes. He lead me over to the drum set that had been vacated by whichever more talented and experienced drummer had been scheduled to play that day. He proceeded to show me the basic four counts of a rock beat I was to play on repeat, and assured me I would be fine. 

He took his place behind the mic, guitar in hand to begin the service and I wide-eyed with intense focus behind the drums. I assume there were other musicians but I don't really remember. All I remember was trying not to look and sound like it was my first rodeo and somewhat stay in sync with the rest of the instruments. 

I knew nothing of technique, fills, counting in, specific rhythmns in different songs or how to end a song. I knew only my newly acquired basic beat that I pounded out with the rigidness of the sticks I held. And, I knew the one who held out the sticks to me had more confidence in me than I had myself. 

That Sunday is set apart from a thousand other Sunday's in my memory simply because it was the day I said yes. I was no star, but it was the start.

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Rock Solid Faith and Fences

Rock Solid Faith and Fences

The summer after we moved into our first home, we built a fence to enclose our yard. The majority of our fence faced west and our windy city was no stranger to 100km/hr winds which often blew furiously from that direction.

To combat this frequent force, we knew we'd have to build something solid.  Nine foot steel posts were secured with concrete into three-foot deep holes. The fence boards were screwed onto three beams that ran horizontally across the top, middle and bottom of the posts and were secured by 3 more horizontal beams on top. It was solid. It probably could've withstood my car ramming into it but I didn't test my hypothesis.

Shortly after we had finished most of the fence, we had one of those terribly windy days. It howled so loudly I feared if I stepped outside it might have carried me to Saskatchewan.

It came with little warning. The day before it was like summer and then... BAM. The biting wind made summer seem like a distant memory. 

I was thankful that the majority of the fence was done. I tried to imagine how crazy it would have been to be screwing in fence boards on a day like that.  I can imagine what our neighbor would have said if (when she approached us about starting our fence in the summer) we had said, "Actually, we're waiting until the wind is blowing 100km/hr. We won't really need the shelter until then." She probably would've put her house up for sale. No one wants to live next door to crazies.

It would be foolish to wait for a storm to start building. 

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The Truth About 2 Years

The Truth About 2 Years

As I turned off the lamp, I thought about how my word for 2017 was discipline and I still felt so far off the mark. I can set a goal like nobody's business but my distractibility, driven by fear, keeps me from faithfully following through. God had been stirring my heart to enforce the margin and boundary around the time I'd set aside to be obedient to what He has called me to do.

My typical response at this kind of crossroads would've been to strive– to promise to try harder and do better– only until I grew weary. Then I would switch to slip out mode– engaging in mindless activities to numb my sense of overwhelmedness, guilt, and failure. Thankfully, God has shown me an alternative– surrender.  

Before drifting off to sleep, in the quietness of my heart I told Him, "We both know how easily distracted I am. I need Your help."

The next thing I knew, my eyes startled open. I found myself awake in my own bed after having the most intense dream. The confusion settled as my dream replayed with clarity. Driving. Dying. Falling. The most vivid, vibrant, beautiful and brillant setting. Dad and his words: two years.

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With Perfect Clarity

With Perfect Clarity

Suddenly, we were stopped outside of the most vivid, vibrant, beautiful and brillant setting my eyes had ever seen. My senses were heightened to a level they had not yet experienced. It was bright without the heat of the sun. I had never seen greener grass, bluer sky or lusher trees. Birds were singing beautifully. I was taking it all in with perfect clarity. There was no noise in my head or around me.  I was utterly overwhelmed with peace. There was no fear or guilt. Only peace. I had a strong suspicion about where I was.

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The First Place to Follow Him {A Bit More About How}

The First Place to Follow Him {A Bit More About How}

It started with chopsticks and coasters then quickly expanded to include corkboard hot pads. My little man found has taken to dwumming. Any song in our house now has a little extra percussion whether by chopsticks, pens, or the little palms of his hands. He was recently upgraded to a practice pad and his own set of kid-size drumsticks by our friend Dewwick who was kind enough to also throw in some lessons. The smile on my little man's face was bigger than every Christmas morning combined.

Derrick’s teaching strategy aimed higher than simply rudiments. He started out with the goal to instill a love for music in my son. His little hands have already drummed along to jazz and rock among other things. Derrick’s reasoning is that without a glimpse of the bigger picture he will lack the motivation to learn, practice and master the rudiments. 

Too often, we approach Bible study with only a rudiment mentality. It’s necessary and you should do it. The rudiments have become primary principles instead of building blocks of music.

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Starving, Hunger Signals & Stools {A Bit More About How}

Starving, Hunger Signals & Stools {A Bit More About How}

Breakfast is not something I normally skip out on. It's part of my daily routine and I'm not one to forget to eat... except for this one particular day. And boy did I ever pick the wrong day.

A few weeks ago, my mom picked me up before the sun was up. We were off to the airport to teach at a conference. I wasn't quite feeling ready for food at that hour. I told myself I would eat later. We arrived at the airport, checked in, and went through security. We walked by a couple of restaurants but I told myself I'll eat later. I don't feel hungry yet. 

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I Don't Have Time to Be in the Word {Beginning With Want}

I Don't Have Time to Be in the Word {Beginning With Want}

As we gathered around the table, our leader read one question aloud, "What would you say to a young mom who says she doesn't have time to be in the Word?" All eyes shifted to me, a young mom who has often thought, when in the world am I going to have a quiet time when there isn't even any quiet?

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