"Our Calling" is the vision of the mission of the Methodist Church.
It boils down to how we honour the good news of the Kingdom of God through four areas of our lives:
Part one, of what I'm sure will be thousands of confessions of bad habits I have... And why this one is making me think about worship.
This one isn't about my inability to regularly update my website, nor my consistency with producing coherent thoughts or words. It's not one of those deeply personal issues to do with toilet seats or nail biting. This one is all about books.
Even then I'm going to have to narrow it down, otherwise we'll be here all day. I'm not here just to confess my tendency to turn down corners of pages instead of reaching for a bookmark, nor my habit of buying books based on recommendations knowing full well that my "to read" list is more than long enough, nor my tendency to start umpteen books at once.
This one is about my inability to finish a book...
"Subject: Merry Christmas”
That’s how the email started…
… And I’ll admit that my heart sank a little.
I’m of the opinion that Christmas doesn’t start until the first Sunday of Advent, and even then I am not convinced that it has really sunk in until I hear “Fairytale of New York” played in public.
The reason for today’s email was to ask for some thoughts on my favourite Christmas song/carol for sharing:
My first instrument is the drums. I've been playing for nearly 20 years I reckon, and while there's room for improvement, I'm not bad even if I do say so myself.
The thing is, I know my strengths. I know that my style and my playing isn't cut out for the big stages and the big crowds. I can pull it off briefly, but sooner or later I'd get caught out for what I am... And I think what I am is a small-room worship drummer.
The key, I've always been taught and stand by to this day, to being a good worship drummer is to know what to play, to know when to play, to feel the room and to sense what is going on.
You could apply it to any musical instrument really.
Here's the latest song I've been working on, inspired by the journey of a friend. I sang it at church as part of this morning's service. (I stole the verses from an old hymn that I've never known by George Washburn Lyon, which is now in the public domain, and there's an accompanying tune which will be shared at some point.)
I miss having a cassette player in my car. That old-school tape player was great because it was easy to plug my phone through and play Spotify, meaning I had a world of music at my fingertips. My current car is new enough to have a CD player, but not good enough to have an aux input, so I'm back to either Radio 2 or CD's that were purchased between 2002 and 2010.
One such CD that is in the current wallet in my car is Newton Faulkner's "Hand Built by Robots", and this is where my unexpected worship began on Sunday afternoon...
CDs are available to buy, just £5 each from me or one of the others.
It must've been about 8 years ago, maybe even to the week, that I got a text asking if I wanted to try out as the drummer for a band. At that point I hadn't played properly for a while, and I was excited at the prospect of knocking the rust off.
It took a couple of weeks for me to make it to my first rehearsal for various reasons, but little did I know that getting in a car with a stranger in Townhead late at night, and driving into a random industrial estate to meet 3 other guys in a rehearsal room that was dark, dingy, and stank of all sorts of substances. I wouldn't be surprised if we would all have tested positive for something had we been tested, just through being in the room after all the creative geniuses that went before.
Little did I know that those guys and that outlet would be exactly what I needed...
DISCLAIMER: I am a huge believer in the power of God to speak to each of us through contemporary culture. I believe he uses the things that the world offers us to allow us a "Thin Place" to meet with him: that through these cultural moments he shows us glimpses of Himself, our potential, and of His purpose and Kingdom.
As far as music goes, I'm a Spotify kind of guy. I have been for a while now. The wife and I don't even own a CD player, though we're recently upgraded to a car that has one... Yes, you read that right... We had a cassette player in the old one! In fact, due to the fact that we were struggling to find cassettes with new music on, we found that it was easiest to plug in Spotify through my phone.
Remarcable is one man blogging about Youth Work, Theology, Family, Life and those other random things that come to mind.