Friday, August 29, 2008

Music Memories

Yesterday, a friend of mine and I were talking about how important music is to our memory. Music can pack a great deal of emotion, but not always just because of the music itself - sometimes it's about the memories that flood our of my brain when I hear it.

I associate specific songs or albums (CDs for those of you 20 years or younger) with events or people or places... Here's a few that really get me:

  • "Out of the Blue" / Electric Light Orchestra / Denver, Colorado: Why? I had it on cassette tape and listened to it over and over again on the 1980 MDYC Tour (11th Grade). Whenever I hear any part of that album - any song - the memories of that tour flood into my head. To this day, the "city" in "Night in the City" refers to Denver. Released in November of 1977 / 9th Grade.
  • "Rumours" / Fleetwood Mac / Ray and Marsha Bone's basement & Melinda Bone: My brother, my mom and I spent hours and hours at the Bone's house. My mom and Marsha were great friends back in that day. So, Mark, the Bone kids and I would hang out in the basement and listen to music and goof around. If I remember it right, Ray and Marsha took the kids to see Fleetwood Mac and after that we played the grooves off of it. By the way, the Bone basement was also were I was introduced to Davie Bowie! Released in February 1977 (8th Grade).
  • Early Van Halen / Cedar Point: Every year our youth group went to Cedar Point during the summer - it was about a 2 hour bus ride. Inevitably, someone would bring a boom box and it seemed like through most of my high school years we were listening to Van Halen. Especially stuff like , "Panama", "Dance, the Night Away", "Light Up the Sky"...
  • "Exodus" / Bob Marley and the Wailers / Mike's Pinto and way too many other memories: Mike had a red Pinto hatchback throughout our driving years in high school (1979 - 1981). It wasn't much, but it ran and it got us around - the bottom of the doors were rusted away so that when it rained your feet got wet and at the drive-in they got cold - but, the stereo was probably worth more than the car... I believe that for at least a year the "Exodus" tape didn't even come out of the tape player. It was a big deal back then to have a player that flipped the tape side without removing the tape - we just left it in there and it played over and over and over again. Great songs like "Jamming", "Three Little Birds" and "The Heathen" still fill my head. Released June, 1977.
  • "Upstairs at Eric's" / Yaz / Scott Lanning and 1st year chorus tour at MCC: It turns out that Yaz isn't even their real name, it's Yazoo, but they released their music in the states under the name Yaz. Scott introduced me to them and I loved them immediately! I still remember being mesmerized by "I Before E Except After C"... Released 1982
  • "Make It Big" / Wham / Kiawah Island: The first time I went to Kiawah was with the Mills. Scott was already there for some kind of convention (I want to go to that convention!), so SueAnn and her kids and Stacy and I and Shawn drove down there in the Mills' van. I didn't bring any CDs and Scott had a changer that had about 6 CDs in it. I drove the second half of the way there so I chose the music and I listened to that CD because it was in there. I've loved it ever since - I couldn't get it out of my head the whole time we were there and I still think about it when we go. Released 1984.

More to come...

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Disenchanted Lullabyes

Disenchanted Lullabyes
Sing me yours, I'll sing you mine
Sing with me now what's a boy to do?
What's a boy to do?

Sing along for yesterday
Sing along my soul to take
Sing along another song for you
What's a boy to do?

I may be scattered
A little shattered
What does it matter
No one has a fit like I do

I may be scattered
A little shattered
What does it matter?
No one has a fit like I do

I'm the only one that's fits you
Whisper with me pass the time
Whisper for the days gone by
Whisper with the voice inside of you

Foo Fighters, "Disenchanted Lullabyes"

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Out Dirty Houses

When a friend calls and says they are going to drop by what is the first thing you do after you hang up the phone? If you are anything like me, you straighten up the house. You make sure that all the main areas are picked up, that the carpet is vacuumed – if I've been working on laundry it get put away. Stuff like that…

The older we get, the better we get at this – we understand what REALLY needs attention before our guests show up. If there isn't too much to do I might make some fresh tea or put some music on. I want the house to be inviting, friendly and as clean as possible. More importantly, I want it to look its best. Get rid of all the stuff that I don’t want my friends to trip over or deal with.

This makes sense with our friends, sometimes we may have friends that we feel close enough to that we don’t ALWAYS have to do all this, but it does make sense.

It DOESN'T make sense when “God drops by”…

I believe that one of the things that keep most of the people away from a healthy relationship with God is that they feel like they have to STRAIGHTEN-UP before He comes over.

Anyone that has come to a point where they even think that they might need God to be with them knows that God is an honored guest.

If the president of the United States were coming to my house for dinner I would use my very best china, have the carpets professionally cleaned, spend hours making the yard perfectly manicured (wow, that would take a while), dust every square inch of the house, fix all the little things that I live with but know need fixing, scrub the bathrooms from floor to ceiling… The list would go on and on – it would take a couple weeks at least… That’s a lot of work!

If someone is at a point where they see that they need God in their life and that they have to invite Him IN – sometimes they freak out! They realize that:

Their life is in disarray
There is a half and inch of dust on their Bible
They haven’t been good to their friends
They haven’t been praying,
Their language is slipped and needs some cleaning up…

SO – they start cleaning up BEFORE they call on Him. They want God in their life, but they want God to come into a clean house – one worthy of his presence…

Feeling that way is admirable – but not what God our Father or Jesus our Savior wants. Jesus came to this earth to seek and save the LOST. He came for the sick, He came for you and He wants to come in NOW – they way you are NOW! He doesn't want you to straighten up first, he doesn't NEED your best china – He just wants you to open the door and let Him in NOW. Jesus ALREADY KNOWS that your spiritual “house” is in disarray and straightening up before you let Him in serves no purpose. In fact, it may tend to put distance between you and Him – He wants you to drop what you are doing and go to Him – just like Peter.

Peter left his fishing equipment – dropped it and walked away from it to follow Jesus. In fact, NONE of Jesus’ disciples took anything with them but the clothes on their backs. They took all of their inadequacies, problems, faults and issues with them and Jesus used them the way they were – that’s the way He wants you…

Jesus wants you to open your heart to Him NOW – don’t hurry around and clean up first. He is knocking at the door (He didn't even call first) just go and let Him in.

HE will clean up the mess.
"...Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." 2 Corinthians 3:7-18