Friday, February 29, 2008

Desmond And Penny

Those of you that follow "Lost" like I do will know about Desmond and Penny. Thursday night's episode ending was absolutely astounding! For those who have ever truly loved and lost will have enjoyed this scene. Wouldn't it be nice in real life to be reconnected to someone that you truly loved and lost like Desmond and Penny? Okay, it's a TV show. But we can dream can't we? I watched this scene five or six times in a row. This was a very moving scene!

There's a very old song called, "Where No One Stands Alone." Even though it talks about the Lord, I can relate it to this subject. There's a line in the song that says, "There's nothing worse than being alone." For those who are married, they may have forgotten what it was like to be alone. Single people know all too well about the solitude and the isolation it brings. Desmond lost Penny. It looks like he could get her back again. Enjoy the clip. What amazing acting. Plus, the music is absolutely incredible. Be well.

Desmond and Penny Talk

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Prodigal Comes Home

It's finally here. The new release from Michael English, "The Prodigal Comes Home." His book came out about nine months ago by the same title. I've always been a fan of Michael's music and this release is a special one. Those who know anything about Michael English knows he went through a horrible time years ago. Losing his marriage, the drug addiction and more cost him plenty. God is gracious and Michael has been restored. As the title says, "The Prodigal Comes Home", and he has.

There are ten new songs and one song that is re-released from his greatest hits CD. My favorites on the CD has to be, "Time", "Don't Think I'm Not Thankful" and "Sanctuary." Michael is singing better than ever. I know that this release will be a treat for those who really love English's music. I'm certainly one of them. It was a long wait for this CD to be released, but it was worth the wait. Check it out, I think you'll be happy you did. Have a great day everyone.


Saturday, February 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Roland!

True friends in this life are a real treasure. When you find a few, hang on to them. One of my dearest friends ever, is Roland Boyce. It's been an eighteen year friendship that continues to this day. Roland celebrates his birthday today and I surprised him with a phone call.

If you'd ever meet Rol you'd like him. You'd find a man full of integrity, kindness, and most importantly Godliness. To me, he is a trusted brother, mentor and friend. His characteristics shows me that he truly has the heart of a pastor. Beyond his ministry, I got to know a man that is full of caring, compassion and understanding.

You can gauge a person many times by their actions matching their words. He has been there for me so much. He always backed his words with action in my life. He told me that he would always be there as a brother and a friend. And...he has. Conversely, he said I have been there for him too. I'm humbled by those words he spoke. In my dictionary of words, if you look up the words "faithful believer", you'll find Rol's picture there. God, I believe, delights in the faithful that are in his fold. Those who walk the talk.

Happy Birthday my dear brother. I wish you the very best that God can give. I'm thankful that we are friends and I consider it a great honor. Have another slice of cake for me, okay? Again, Happy Birthday my friend.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


And all my days are numbered
All my steps are ordered
Every breath of every moment
I have now belongs to you
I belong to you

It all goes by so quickly. It seems like yesterday that I got my first bicycle. I even remember my first ballglove and my love of baseball. I remember the first time sitting behind the microphone of a radio station. The day I got married. The years of playing baseball, running, taking vacations and so much more. Plus some of the sorrows as well. My mother’s passing, relatives passing away, and now some of the problems I deal with.

The line of this song by Michael English called “Time” from his new CD coming out Tuesday hits home, “My steps are ordered.” This I do know: Jesus has been there through every step of the way. Even during my times of so-called self sufficiency, pride and self-reliance, it was still the Lord that provided any good gift that I experienced.

I’m no longer the kid running wildly through the fields of the old farm I lived on. But, inside, I know someday I’ll run, jump and dance in the presence of my Lord. Yes, all my days are numbered and all my steps are ordered. But that’s okay. Now, that I’m a bit older I lean on him more. He truly is all I can really trust and believe in for eternity. It says to remember the creator in the days of our youth. Now that I am older, I’m certainty glad that I did.

So listen to a clip of this new song that’ll be on Michael’s new release coming out Tuesday. All in all, Jesus is my everything. I wouldn’t have made it this far without him. I owe him everything. May the peace of Christ be with you all!

"Time" clip by Michael English

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Peter Strauss

Happy Birthday to Peter Strauss. Yes, my all time favorite actor turns sixty-one today. I have a fondness for many actors, but Strauss will be my all time favorite. My first viewing of his great acting was in the 1976 Mini Series "Rich Man, Poor Man." He went on to win an emmy for "The Jericho Mile." He also starred in some other great mini-series including, "Masada" and "Kane and Abel." My all time favorites though are, "In The Lake Of The Woods", "Trial, The Price Of Passion" and "Fugitive Among Us." Find more out about Peter Strauss at Wikipedia.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Beyond The "Seeker Movement"

Frankly, this article comes along at a very good time. After some findings, Bill Hybels realizes that programs alone won't get the job done. Affecting individual lives is what counts. Excerpt below along with the link.

(Start of quote)
Speaking at the Leadership Summit, Hybels summarized the findings this way:

Some of the stuff that we have put millions of dollars into thinking it would really help our people grow and develop spiritually, when the data actually came back it wasn’t helping people that much. Other things that we didn’t put that much money into and didn’t put much staff against is stuff our people are crying out for.

Having spent thirty years creating and promoting a multi-million dollar organization driven by programs and measuring participation, and convincing other church leaders to do the same, you can see why Hybels called this research “the wake up call” of his adult life.

Hybels confesses:

We made a mistake. What we should have done when people crossed the line of faith and become Christians, we should have started telling people and teaching people that they have to take responsibility to become ‘self feeders.’ We should have gotten people, taught people, how to read their bible between service, how to do the spiritual practices much more aggressively on their own.

In other words, spiritual growth doesn’t happen best by becoming dependent on elaborate church programs but through the age old spiritual practices of prayer, bible reading, and relationships. And, ironically, these basic disciplines do not require multi-million dollar facilities and hundreds of staff to manage.

Does this mark the end of Willow’s thirty years of influence over the American church? Not according to Hawkins:

Our dream is that we fundamentally change the way we do church. That we take out a clean sheet of paper and we rethink all of our old assumptions. Replace it with new insights. Insights that are informed by research and rooted in Scripture. Our dream is really to discover what God is doing and how he’s asking us to transform this planet. (End quotes)

I'm not fond of programs that just get people "plugged" into an area of service without ministering to their obvious needs. They said it best above with the comment that it really takes age old spiritual practices of bible reading, prayer and fellowship. I want to go on record and say that I believe that Bill Hybels is a decent upright Christian. I think his pragmatism was a bit off with the whole program and "seeker movement" mentality. However, to be fair, aren't we all supposed to learn? I'd rather have a few believers in a small church that are being feed, nourished and that grow than a big organization where a number is stamped on your jacket.

This world with today's technology too is causing more people to become lonlier all the time. Has it really gotten us anywhere? People don't call anyone anymore (for the most part), everything is done by email. Friends get dumped by the wayside because everyone is way too busy. I think a new priority of "people first" should come into play. Remember the scriptures say, "Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interest of others." (Phil 2:4) The message is clear. We need to be reaching out to individuals. And...programs for the most part, in my opinion, won't get the job done. I do give Bill Hybels credit for standing up and being honest. I've heard him speak in person many times. I believe he was doing what he felt was needed. I hope this report gives him clear direction as to what to do next.

As the end times grow rapidly upon us, it'll take more prayer, study of scripture and reaching out to others "one-on-one" to get the job done. That's just my take. I'll throw this in for free by the way. Don't put your trust in things like TV and TBN. Find a good church where people truly care. The TV guys won't be there when you get sick and need prayer. If we followed the example of the early church and how they met together we might be better off. Be well all.

Monday, February 18, 2008

What Can Be Found In "Lost"

Almost two weeks ago I told you about a new book called, "What Can Be Found In Lost." Mine arrived and I read it in one day! It's authored by John Ankerberg and Dillon Burroughs. It's less than two-hundred pages and it's a nice read. For any of us who are "Lost" fans I recommend this book. It does deal with Christianity as well. So the unbeliever might pick this book up due to it's subject with "Lost" and might get some spiritual insight about our Lord.

Each chapter deals with a different subject. E.g.: Lost on God, Lost on Prayer, Lost on Miracles, etc. The book's chapters are based in three parts: The authors discuss dialogues of the characters when they talk about spiritual issues. The second part shows what the scriptures really teach and the third part is "Lost Talk." Various questions you can use in a discussion group.

Ankerberg and Burroughs throw in a disclaimer. They are not saying that "Lost" is a Christian show. They say it addresses spiritual issues and they point out what the Word of God really says regarding these things.

"Lost" is my favorite show. Actually, it's the only regular TV show I watch. I do catch the news and weather but that's about it. So, I recommend this book. I hope everyone has a great week. Be well all.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Flashback: Sweet Comfort Band

The Sweet Comfort Band was one of my favorite groups in the eighties. Bryan Duncan's front man vocals were always mesmerizing to me. Bryan along with brothers Rick and Keith Thomson; and Randy Thomas formed a group that had a great appeal to me. Their music was unique in its style. My friend Marty and I would listen to their music over and over. Their final release as a group was my favorite as well, "Perfect Timing." Bryan went on to do a solo career and a great one at that. Plus, Randy Thomas became a part of the group "Allies."

I was always impressed with Bryan's voice. His solo career had one song that has become a staple for me called, "When I Think Of Home." Below, listen to samples of "Perfect Timing" and it includes my favorite song from the release, "You Lead Me To Believe." Also, a clip of Bryan's "Home" song that I admire so well is included.

Just for fun, here's a picture of Bryan Duncan and me in Nashville right after an interview. He thought it would be fun to look like we were being arrested and, hence, the photo. I still get a kick out of the photo and liked Bryan's humor! By the way, wait till you see the picture of Phil Keaggy and me dancing! That's for another day though. Sorry, you'll have to wait! For now, enjoy some clips as we look back to some great days of CCM!

Perfect Timing Clips

When I Think Of Home

Seasons Change

I posted this subject sometime back. With Joel's wonderful post yesterday I felt that my previous post fits well into his subject matter. For today, here's a relisting of my subject that seasons do change. Enjoy.

Ray Boltz

Seasons change, don't they? My concept for today is really nothing new I guess. But have you ever wondered about the changing seasons and the ones in our own lives? I've always compared the four seasons to the seasons in our life. Work with me a minute on this, okay? In spring, we are born. In summer, we are in our adulthood making a living, having a family and we are full of life and stamina. Then autumn comes. This is the third season of our life. We start slowing down a bit and the summer days of our life are over. Then finally, winter sets in, we leave this earthly life. However, I don't want to end this on a downer. When we see Christ, it all starts over and we'll be in the spring of our life again! No, I'm not espousing some new age belief. I just think that's the way it happens.

I've been listening intently to a favorite Ray Boltz song. This CD came out around 1992. It has always been a favorite. I can't help but get a bit misty as I listen to the title track. For you see, I'm not a young man anymore. I've technically entered the fall season of my life. There are those in their seventies that tell me I'm still a kid. From their perspective, maybe so. However, I'm not the twenty or thirty year old idealistic individual that I used to be. There was a day I thought I could conquer the world. To some degree, many of my dreams have been met, some have diminished and some never came to fruition. These days I'm more realistic. However, I still have dreams that I hope come about in the next few years if the Lord allows unless he returns first.

I can't help but think of King David in Psalm 37 where he said, "I have been young, now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his children begging bread." David had seen much in his life. He was the shepherd boy, the young lad that slew the giant, the mighty soldier going off to war, the servant running from the madman Saul, becoming King, and finally the old man that wrote those wonderful words in Psalms. I know I'll never be a King David. However, as I ponder on things these days, I just want to be where God wants me. I have three desires in my life. If God allows them, I'll be so happy. However, if the Lord never gave me one more thing, he has given me so much in this life I could never thank him enough.

I've had my fun in the summer sun, enjoyed years of fruitful ministry, known love and even lost love, but ultimately I know a God that loves me so. Yes, our seasons change. However, our God does not! He is the same, wonderful, kind, gracious, loving God through Jesus Christ. Seasons change. They are meant to be that way. So it is with our lives. I hope I come to a point that I don't despise the autumn season of my life, but embrace it fully. Ray sings in the song, "the blessings are worth the pain." I wouldn't want to relive some of the hard lessons I've had to learn in life. Especially this last decade. So, friends, remember the seasons come. And...each one has their own special blessings. Be well.

Seasons Change

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Autumn Of Life

Sometimes a friend can say it better than I can. Below I have reprinted my friend Joel's post on the "Autumn of Life." He spoke what I so fequently feel. I know that my blog is a big maudlin and sad at times. I know most people probably prefer frivolity and fun, but this just happens to be where I'm at with my life right now. I do love to laugh, play pratical jokes on people and have fun like anyone else. However, Joel's post is a sobering reminder about what life is about. Be well all.

"The Autumn of Life" by Joel Griffith

I've been to quite a few funerals in the past few years. I preached two of them and served as a pallbearer at my aunt's funeral last Tuesday. It's got me thinking a bit about how quickly life passes by. Scripture paints the picture very vividly.

Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away (James 4:14).

As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. When the wind has passed over it, it is no more, And its place acknowledges it no longer (Psalm 103:15-16).

There are many more Scriptures I could cite, but you get the idea. Of course, those of us who are believers in the Lord Jesus Christ have the hope of resurrection and eternal life. We know from the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians that to be absent from the body is to be at home with the Lord. These promises are comforting, but I think it's healthy and good to ponder just how quickly our lives pass by, and to consider just how we are spending the time God has alloted to us.

I am in my late 40s. It doesn't seem like it's been 30 years since I graduated from high school. It doesn't seem like 30 years since I sat behind a radio microphone for the first time. When I see people with whom I grew up, I am stunned to see the effects of time's passage. Some of us are a bit better preserved than others. I am often told I don't look my age. My bald head gives it away as my face is unlined. I only recently began to have grey showing up in my beard and temples. However, my body tells me of advancing age. I have arthritis in my neck and lower back. I tire more quickly these days. I'm a bit more irritable than before. And so on.

It amazes me that the children I used to take care of now tower over me and can pick me up. They are marrying and having children of their own. My oldest sister will be 64 this year. My mother will be 85. I left full time radio 15 years ago. I have been with my present employer that long. Where does time go? That's another thing about advancing age. Time used to drag on and on when I was younger. Now it seems to race by at warp speed. My joke used to be "Auntie Em, Auntie Em, the hourglass is almost empty." Now it's not as much of a joke.

Will I live to old age? Will I be around to see the return of the Lord, or will I be among those who return with Him? Will I continue to live in a land with relative freedom, or will I witness the onset of persecution and oppression? Will my church continue on the path of biblical truth or will it join so many others these days and plunge into apostasy? I don't know. I just pray that I will be found faithful no matter what happens. Psalm 90:12 asks the Lord to teach us to number our days, that we might present to Him a heart of wisdom. That's a good prayer to keep offering.

I guess my last comment is this. All of us who name the name of Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior would do well to keep time in mind. I've certainly wasted enough of it. I don't want to waste any more. May He redeem the time I have left for His glory.

Thanks Joel, it was well written and very timely.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Weather Déjà vu

It's ironic that it was exactly the same time last year here in Ohio that we got dumped upon with the snow. I don't think it's as bad, so far anyway, as last years but I've had about enough of it already.

We went through a week or two of cloudy days, no sun shining and then to this. As you have gathered, I'm not a winter person. If I had my druthers, I would much rather live in North Carolina or South Carolina. I hope I can retire there someday.

I had a chance to work outside of Raleigh NC a few years ago. I was offered a voice-over position for an agency that produced church radio programs for radio stations. I didn't take it. Kick me now! Then, I was offered a Station Manager's position of an Adult Contemporary Christian station in uppper New York state. I declined. This is as far north as I ever want to go again.

My friend Roland of eighteen years was a senior pastor in Dallas Texas and hated the weather. When I visited him, I thought, "I could live here." Now, he is in Northern Minnesota. He wants me to visit. But, it'll be in the summer. The older I get the more I hate ice, snow, sleet and anything under 50 degrees.

It seems here in Ohio that our summer months are fewer and fewer. And...they talk about global warming! Yeah right, pull the other leg. Ha! For those of you who love the cold, have my share. I'll gladly give it to you. If it stayed summer all year long, I'd be a happy camper. If I never saw the leaves change, fall or winter take place ever again, it would be way too soon. I normally place a picture on my posts, but I will refrain from it today. It's just too saddening is all.

However, this just happens to be where I am at right now and have to deal with it. Of all days I have to go out of town, it is today, with the freshly fallen snow. I know the scriptures say to be thankful in all things. Well, this one is of such magnitude I think I'll have to pray extremely long about. I sure can't wait till I can don the denim shorts, T-shirt and ball cap for the summer. Till then, God is still good. He is on the throne and we are blessed indeed. Snow or no snow. Be well.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Facing The Giants

What a wonderful movie. At first I was a little bit reticent on watching it. I don't watch a lot of movies that deal with sports. I also felt that this movie might be a bit of a "b" type movie. Boy, I was wrong. It was a very moving story.
We don't always have to have high-tech graphics and sound-effects for a film to be good. And this movie was very good.

This story deals primarily with Grant Taylor. He's a losing coach with an underdog football team and he faces the giants of fear and failure on and off the field to surprising results. Secretly, people are trying to replace him as coach, his car is broken down and he cannot give his wife children.

This movie had some comical moments that got me to laugh. Most importantly, it caused me to reflect and taught me that we all can face our giants and know that our God can carry us through. I put two clips from the movie on this post. I so related to Grant as he told his wife Brooke about how bad he felt about losing at everything. When he put his head in his hands and wept it really touched me. I think it will do the same for you. The second scene has him reading scripture and giving a heartfelt prayer.

By all means, rent or buy this movie. You won't be sorry you did. At least I think you won't be if it touches you the way it has me and many others. Be well all.

Grant and Brooke talk at the table

Grant Prays

Friday, February 8, 2008

Flashback: Grand Opening

One of my first introductions to CCM music was back in 1977. It was Andrus Blackwood and Company. The release was "Grand Opening." And not to sound too much like a pun, it was a great grand opening to me and the world of Contemporary Christian Music. Sherman Andrus and Terry Blackwood were former members of The Imperials at different times before becoming the duet of AB&Co.

Two of my all time favorite cuts from the LP are "I'm Gonna Rise" and "Never Be." These songs still bring back good memories. They also went on to do some more projects and one of my favorites from the "Step Out Of The Night" project is a brooding, intensive song called, "Wake The Town." Below is a clip of two favs. Enjoy and have a great weekend everyone.

I'm Gonna Rise & Never Be

Amass Appeal

"What's the deal with collecting? Why do so many go so batty over stamps, coins and just about anything else?" That quote starts the article "Amass Appeal" in the latest edition of AARP magazine. It really caught my interest.

I've never been a pack-rat. I don't really collect anything. There was one guy by the name of Barry Levenson that was downtrodden about his beloved Red Sox losing to the New York Mets in 1986. Standing in a market he was looking for something to ease the pain. He started staring at mustard! He also went on to think that if he collected mustard the Red Sox would eventually win. I think it is coincidence, but since then the Red Sox have won twice. Now he has a museum to house all his mustard that he has collected from all over! Picture to the left.

It does amaze me at the things some people collect. Some of my relatives collect all kinds of items. One collects dolls, another will collect porcelain angels and so on. Some people I know have so many things that it lines their entire walls. What do you do with all of that stuff? Just look at it? Or, maybe if your industrious, dust it. Others collect stamps, coins, you name it.

The article's bottom line is that people just love to do it. Every week you'll find people on Ebay searching to increase their collection. You'll find flea markets crammed with buyers and sellers of just about anything imaginable. Maybe I just don't get it.

As I said before, I'm not a packrat. If I don't need something, I get rid of it. I don't like clutter and I'm pretty well organized. Now, I do have some things that I wouldn't part with. I have a box of old cards and letters that loved ones and friends have written to me that have sentimental value. Those are priceless. It's like the song by Wayne Watson, "Watercolor Ponies" that talks about the special picture his child had drawn for him. But, I don't see that as collecting. I see it as a sentimental reason for holding on to something.

Yes, I have some odds and ends that are special to me. I won a tie that Peter Strauss had worn in one of his movies. That is special to me. But, I don't collect everything on this one actor. I also have a 45 rpm record framed. Why? It's the logo on the 45 by RCA. It takes me back to my earliest days of music that came on 45's. My first music purchase ever was B.J. Thomas' "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head" on 45.

So, yes, I have some things that are special to me. But, again, I'm not a packrat and don't collect any "one" thing. I hate clutter. Especially paper clutter. If I don't need it, it goes. I have one friend that collects hundreds of DVD's. How in the world will he ever have time to watch all of these movies? I have a small collection (if you want to call it that) of favorites that I'll watch from time to time. But, collecting is a lifestyle to some.

My final take is this: We'll leave it all behind anyway. What good is collecting and hoarding going to do anyone? I did collect the state quarters for awhile and finally stopped. I was getting less-than-mint coins and it would take so long to get them all. Then, what would I do? Sit there and stare at them and then put them away? Sure, I have some things I'd not want to part with. But, I don't consider them collections. They are just sentimental items that really only mean something to me. However, we are all different. To be fair, maybe I just don't understand the thinking of a collector. To put a spiritual spin on it, do some people collect because there's an emptiness inside they are trying to fill? The old song says, "The world may try to satisfy that longing in your soul/ You may search the wide world over but you'll be just as before/ You'll never find true satisfaction
Until you've found the Lord/ For only Jesus can satisfy your soul." In the long run, all things will turn to dust. Sure, God does give us special things to enjoy in life. I have to admit though, I don't understand the whole collecting thing. Be well all.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

What Can Be Found In "Lost"

There's a new book out! Okay, new revelation, right? To the writing of books there is no end. King Solomon had it correct. Even though I don't read as much as I used to, I have ordered this book! It's "What Can Be Found In Lost."

Here is part of the editorial review from Amazon. (Start of review.)

What can Christians learn from one of the most popular TV series of all time? The show features a cast that struggles with the eternal issues of identity, conflict, relationships, and spirituality. Though the show does not have a Christian foundation or theme, there is much believers can learn about social and cultural attitudes and perspectives through its episodes such as...

The selfish bent of human nature
The darkness of evil
The hunger people have for acceptance and success
The realization of our need for God
The hope for a positive future

Many of the problems and difficulties of everyday life are captured succinctly in LOST making it a useful point of reference for understanding how different people view issues of a spiritual nature. (End of review.)

Obviously as a fan of "Lost" I'll find this book to be interesting. Even if it isn't "as" spiritual as I might hope it'll be (but it could), I'll still find it an interest as I cannot get enough of the show. It's written by John Ankerberg and Dillon Burroughs. I used to watch John's insightful program years ago as he dealt much with spiritual issues as the dangers of cults in America. If it ends up being just a "fun" book, it'll still be worth some light reading. Be well all!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Way Beyond The Blue

Way beyond the blue, where the Father is calling
Let Him take you to a life beyond compare
His love is wider than the skies above you
And He has plans for you, that go way beyond the blue

By far, Steven Curtis Chapman's definitive work in music is the CD "More To This Life." It is one that I treasure the most. Particularly the chorus to the song above, "Way Beyond The Blue."

Everytime I fly, that song always comes to mind. I'm just like a little kid getting candy when I get to fly. I have to have a window seat. I love everything about flying. The takeoffs, the flight itself and the mixed-feeling I get about landing. Oh, yes, I love the landings too. The only sad part about it is that I know the flight is over.

I'm not afraid of heights and flying just seems so natural to me. When I'm seated there looking out over the vast horizon I am just in awe as I take it all in. I savor each minute soaring above the clouds and looking, "way beyond the blue." Sometimes I wonder though: How can I be so brave when others have the "white-knuckle" syndrome when flying? One person I know took a flight and the air-line attendant had to calm him down from the panic. Me, what an upper! I can forgive the stale air and the bad food just for the pure enjoyment of the flight.

When I went to Germany twice, I slept soundly. Turbulence and air pockets didn't even seem to bother me. However, most of my flights have been really good ones. So, the caveat, if there is one, is if I had a bad flight maybe my tune would change.

This brings me to today's point. Why is it that I fret over little things in my life? The seemingly insignificant daily irritations and fears I deal with. I'll worry over something that never happens, fret over an incident that has no merit and at times, to my broken heart, don't trust my Lord enough. But, I can board a gigantic piece of metal traveling at 5 to 600 miles an hour at an altitude of 30 plus thousand feet and be calm! I see people downing motion-sickness pills, some nervously talking and others hanging on to the armrest for dear life and I, well, just lazily look out the window and take it all in. What a contrast!

Some of my happiest dreams revolve around flying. I'll have my arms stretched out like wings soaring over the tops of trees, farmland that look like quilts and manuever my way through the sky gliding and smiling the whole time. Then, I awake. Sadly, my dream is over.

However, even though I don't trust enough in my Lord at certain times and I tell him how sorry I am, I know he still loves me "oh ye of little faith." Someday, unless I pass out of this life first, the Lord will come back, and I'll take the ride of my life! I'll truly go way beyond the blue where the father is calling! I wonder sometimes: Have we heard it for so long that it's just become a song? The Lord is coming back to this earth again. So, until he comes, I'll look out over those blue skies and I know that someday he'll take me "way beyond the blue!" My ticket was purchased 34 1/2 years ago. Bought and paid for by the blood of my saviour! Even so, Lord Jesus, come! Be well all.

Way Beyond The Blue

Friday, February 1, 2008

Flashback: David Meece

The very first time I heard David Meece was on a local radio station. I remember the announcer too. He worked here in Ohio and ended up at the same station I did years later in Illinois. Small world. Gene played David's "God Holds The Future." I was hooked on Meece's music ever since. I don't quit remember it too well, but I think the LP (yes kiddies, LP) cover, he was in a jogging outfit. I couldn't get enough of that song...until, this one came out, "Are You Ready?"

Of course David may be remembered more for "Seventy Times Seven" and his signature song "We Are The Reason." However, I could never get over the saxaphone and the somber feel of "Are You Ready?" That was back in the early eighties I believe. The truth of that song is as real today, and maybe more so, than ever.

In the nineties I helped coordinate a "listeners meet the artists" contest for a few years. Two fortunate people would be flown to Nashville, round trip accomodations, and have dinner with some of the popular CCM artists of the time. I don't remember the exact year of this picture, it may be circa '93 or '94. It was great to spend time with the artists and our winners were thrilled. In the picture is the group Sierra, David Robertson and of course David Meece. I was glad to finally meet David myself and tell him how much his music has touched me through the years.

Bottom Row, L to R: Wendy of Sierra, David Robertson and Debra of Sierra.
Top Row, L to R: Yours Truly, Jennifer of Sierra and David Meece

So, below is a sample of one of my favorites. I know that music is progressive and that new styles are developed but I sure do miss some of the old classics. Well, all, that's it for another week. Let's remember that God is truly good and he "does" give good gifts to his children. Even at times when things are hard, our Lord will never leave us or forsake us. David's song is apropos "Are You Ready?" Be well and have a great weekend.

Are You Ready?