Month: October 2012

Sunday Tunes: Forever Jones

I am a music junky. I listen to music almost as much as I breathe. I love lyrics more than melodies and baselines, A minors and drum solos. The lyrics are what determines if I love the artist enough to come back and today’s selection does just that. It keeps you returning for one more listen. Forever Jones is a family band of 7 from Shreveport, LA creating soulful gospel music with influences from pop to rock. My wife was singing ‘He wants it all’ one day and I asked who sings that? Well, the rest is history and I’ve been a fan ever-since. Only stepping on the music scene in 2010 and having a Grammy nomination and 3 Dove Award nominations. The Forever Jones family is a forced to be reckoned with.

My favorite verse in ‘He wants it all’ is:
“there’s a voice that cries out in the silence,
searching for a heart that will love him”

I truly believe that the God I serve speaks in the silence as well as the chaos. But for me, it has always been in the silent moments of tuning out the rest of the world, that he breathes wisdom into my life. I hope you enjoy Β them as much as we do.
My Forever Jones faves
He wants it all
Every Moment
Heaven

Grocery Shopping = Relationships

It’s funny, this conversation was spawned by talking to a friend at work. I’ve always had a thing for getting involved in the lives of others, thinking that I had some advice to offer. I always felt I was calibrated to be a 45-year-old who man who sat on his front porch, singing old hymns, accompanied with a glass of lemonade awaiting locals to come down the gravel driveway seeking tutelage. Right now, you’re thinking, what a freak! But hey, here you get the truth and nothing but. But anyways something urged me to ask her about her dating life.

I’ve always found myself intrigued with the dating lives of others because I think it’s interesting. The format in which we choose our significant others. You know there’s always these stipulations, guidelines, and mother-says set of rules that we impose upon ourselves instead of using simple Prayer and waiting or our internal instincts. We don’t like to wait and I think it’s in those moments of impatience that we screw up our own lives. We don’t ask the right questions. We aren’t honest enough with one another. You didn’t meet the entire family…Oh! this is important my friends, you need to know what you’re getting into.

My favorite metaphor for this process is ‘grocery shopping’. It’s so simple and yet so eye-opening if you think of it in this way. First, everyone knows you shouldn’t go grocery shopping hungry. What happens? You end up with a cart full of everything from Oreos to frozen pizza and those things were never on your list. You’re allergic to nuts and find yourself with 2 lbs of bridge mix. Second, you never go grocery shopping exhausted. You aren’t thinking clearly. You don’t read the nutritional guides, you pick up fat-free instead of full of fat, and then you get home to realize you have nothing that you needed to create a complete meal.

I think you get what I’m saying? At least, I hope you do because I could really go on and on. Long story short, be selective when choosing your spouse. Seek God’s advice on who’s right for you. Listen in the silence and you will be amazed at what he can reveal. The things that you never would’ve heard in the chaos of your hunger and exhaustion.

Inked Thoughts

I can’t always place my emotions or begin to understand their source. There would just be moments in time where these phrases, words, vivid imagery and thoughts would just overwhelm me. Usually I had to stop the task at hand and write it down whether or not I understood it. This poem was birthed from one of those moments.

Untitled

The dark grains of life
once filled with a bright glowing hue of oily noir
seemed to slowly fade away
they were stressed away with every
stroke of bristle
only to be massaged by the wind

today’s new thoughts are just yesterday’s reincarnated worries
carrying a brand new grain
to a brand new death
when will it all cease

Are we disconnected?

Is anyone else frustrated with the fact that we don’t talk to people any more? What ever happened to the days when you could have simple dialogue with someone in the elevator or in the line at the grocery store? These moments rarely exist without people thinking you’re a freak and whipping out their iPhone 10 in order to ignore conversation. It’s crazy when you think about it. We’d rather tweet, facebook, and text over having a physical encounter with anyone in order to connect. I notice everyday, kids don’t know how to speak to people. It’s because their parents in conjunction with society has taught them how to communicate in an alternate format.

Is that God’s plan for us? To simply live out our lives never getting involved in the lives of one another because we don’t know each other. I mean, why is our being friends contingent upon whether your kids in my kids class, now we’re in the same small group, we work at the same place. Is that really what God intended when he spoke about ‘loving thy neighbor as you love thy self’? I think we’re in desperate need of a wake up call if we aren’t willing to step outside of what is comfortable to us and make friends with strangers. We were designed for community. We are designed to hold each other accountable for living a life pleasing to God. A life bearing the burdens of our neighbors, and strangers alike. Even as I sit here and write this I am just as guilty as the next but I want to change. I want to be different. I want to be part of a community of believers that care about others more than themselves.

Scripture References:
Acts 2:42-47
Galatians 6:2
1 Peter: 4:9
Philippians 2:4