Why Would U Mourn Prince?

I’ve seen a few people question why people would honor Prince. He was, after all, controversial, edgy and so on. I’ve asked myself why I was saddened last week too. I can’t speak for everyone, but I can speak for myself. It boils down to this – Prince is a part of my story. I’ve learned that until you fully embrace your story, you can’t move forward writing new pages. The story will include good and bad. There will be wonderful memories and times you wish you could erase. Removing them removes pages from your story. It minimizes what made you who you are.

Prince was big in the 80’s and at a time when an awkward and clumsy teenager like me was trying to figure things out. It was a time of first loves and friends and homecoming, learning to drive and prom kings and queens. It was the age of excess with big hair, fluorescent clothes and the music. Oh the music…

It was my first concert (New Edition) with Eddie B and Lori N. It was riding in the car with my best friend Chad signing Van Halen songs until we wore the tape out. It was Friday nights in Mayfield driving around to songs by The Outfield with Ern and Stephen. If there was a piano somewhere around, you just had to learn the intro to Home Sweet Home by Motley Crue. You had to know how to move and moonwalk like Michael Jackson. I once cut school to buy INXS tickets for Vickie when I wasn’t even allowed to go to the concert (she did get me a shirt so I could act like I went). We slow danced to Bon Jovi and learned to rap to Run DMC, LL Cool J, the Beastie Boys and explored our goth side with The Cure and Violent Femmes.

I could go on and on and tag so many more friends from those years. They are treasured. Sure, there were broken hearts and scars. There was puppy love and having no clue how to treat our first dates. But we were writing our story. We were learning the mistakes to teach our children to avoid at all costs. The habits, the trials and the things our parents said we should avoid.

I’ll leave you with one last thought… I begged my parents to buy us a VCR. Everyone had one. We finally got ours for Christmas one year. The first video we ever watched (from Bedford video) was one I also begged my parents to let me see. The movie? “Purple Rain” by Prince. Not exactly the way to bring confidence to the purchase your parents made. It was edgy. It was a little raunchy. It wasn’t a highlight for me choosing family movies. Neither was “Dirty Dancing” when each of my family members walked out of the theater one by one in the first 30 minutes….

What can I say. It’s a part of my story. I embrace it. I lived it, loved it, recovered from it and at times, miss the simplicity of it. That’s why I mourned Prince last week. I mourned another reminder that my story, my songs and history had slipped away.

#RIPPrince

Everything to Me

Hey, it’s not even 2008 yet and I was hit with at least 3 “surely you can change something” moments this morning! Just for kicks and giggles, I typed surelywecanchange.com into the address bar and it seems that someone else has the same idea. I hope to have a page added to the blog soon for “Surely We Can Change Something” opportunities which will be a growing list.

In the meantime, I missed this by a month, but November was “National Adoption Month”. I didn’t realize that until I hit Mark Schultz web site this morning. Take a moment and read through the letters to Mark at this link from people that heard his song. Surely they DID change something! Enjoy this incredible song and video from Mark Schultz for the song “Everything to Me“.

*Special note – Mark Schultz writes this from personal experience as he was adopted as a child. For more of a look “behind the music” on this song, check it out at this link.

"Cinderella" by Steven Curtis Chapman

img_3666.jpgI have been waiting and waiting for the last 2 weeks for a good opportunity to post this song. My buddy Clay gave me one tonight. You see, tonight at 6:30, Clay and his wife Christine entered a whole new dimension. They welcomed a little daughter into this world. This isn’t their first child, but it is their first little girl. Now it starts. Now songs like this one from Steven Curtis Chapman take on a whole new meaning. Congratulations Clay and Christine. Get your dancin’ shoes on. Here’s your long distance dedication!

Cinderella” by Steven Curtis Chapman from the CD “This Moment

That Scares Me…

On my flight home last night I was thinking about an appointment I have Monday which has my “fear factor” level spiked at about a 10. I’d rather not go into details, but I’ll let you know next week how it went. Let’s call it an “unspoken” prayer request. While I was battling the fear and anxiety of that, the song below came through the iPod. The first time I heard it, I couldn’t help but think how accurate and appropriate it is. These things do in fact scare me. Van Zant nailed it with this one.

That Scares Me” by Van Zant from the CD “My Kind of Country

A Call to Prayer

family2.jpgMany of you have been following the journey of my friend Stef the past few months either through his blog, AC180, my blog or all three. If you are not familiar with Stef, he is an amazing man of God, Christian brother, husband, father and friend. About 6 months ago, God gave me the blessing of connecting our paths and I am a better person today because of that divine moment. If you would like to know more about Stef, his journey and his family, he has been sharing it through his blog.

Today, I want to make a public call to prayer for my Christian brother, fellow AC180 contributor and friend. He has a surgery coming this Friday which is a very large step in his journey. I’d like to make the request to all that read these words to join me in praying. By linking arms with one another and lifting up Stefan and his family, we are proclaiming that God is on His throne. We are placing our trust in the hands of the great physician and the surgeons that will be handling the delicate procedure on Friday. I am also asking that everyone pray specifically on Friday morning while Stef is undergoing the surgery. Some have also committed to fasting on Friday if you feel led to do so.

I woke up this morning with the words to this song on my heart. When I gave it a quick listen this morning, the chorus at the end said it all. “We are NOT alone“. Thank you to all of you that are praying. We serve a great God. We serve a BIG God. May he get the glory, honor and praise.

“Be Still” by Story Side B from the CD “We Are Not Alone”

Random Friday

friday.jpgIt’s October 19th, in Ohio and 70 degrees outside…in Ohio!

Big weekend for the scrapbooking community at our church. The special guest speaker is none other than my sister! I’m not proud of her or anything.

Big weekend in our household too. My wife is running in the Columbus Marathon on Sunday. Keep her in your prayers as she completes the race she feels God has called her to run. I’ll be walking a whopping 1/2 mile to catch the beginning, middle and end.

With apologies to Justin Timberlake, “I’m Bringin’ Lazy Back”!

For you Indians fans out there, there’s a great article on Paul Byrd’s faith HERE.

For you baseball movie fans, there was a new movie that launched last weekend called “The Final Season“. The official site is HERE

Tuesday’s new releases include the new Steven Curtis Chapman CD called “This Moment”. If you can’t wait that long, head over to THIS SITE and register (it’s free) for an account. There you can hear the entire album before it hits the streets on Tuesday.

Just a heads up…if you like the song “Stealing Cinderella“, you have got to download “Cinderella” on Steven Curtis Chapman’s new CD on Tuesday. I’m still trying to recover from hearing it the first time…ugh.

Have a great weekend and GO TRIBE!!!

The Warrior is a Child

images.jpgI spoke with a dear friend this evening that is facing a storm. Through his journey, others have found strength and seen a faith that inspires believers and those that don’t know Christ. He is a warrior in every sense of the word. But even warriors need a place and a time to rest a bit.

When I was growing up, our home had a front porch with a swing on it. It was a place of rest. I had friends in high school that would come over and just hang out on the front porch. More then once, I came home to find that a friend had been there for a while, just hanging out, chatting with my mom. Many a decision was made there. Many the outcome of decision was cried over there. It was a place to rest.

We may grow older and get farther away from home, but as Twila Paris sings, “the warrior is a child”. We still need a time and a place where we can lay down the armor and find rest. The battles get long, the legs grow weary. But praise the Lord there is comfort and a place to rest. Probably my favorite Max Lucado quote says:

“God didn’t still the storm, but he calmed the sailor”

To all who are facing the storms, fighting the battles, may this song bless you today. Deep inside all of our armor, the warrior is a child.

The Warrior is a Child” by Twila Paris

Additional Resources

I’m posting the two videos below as follow up from our small group discussion tonight. As you can tell by the videos, the conversation was far ranging. Even if you’re not in our small group (you’re always welcomed to join), both videos are worth checking out.

The first video came from my time of telling “my story”. Since it was my turn this week, I referenced this video from Brandon Heath for the song “I’m Not Who I was”. It’s just not the same without the video. By the grace of God, I’m not who I was.

The second video comes from our “Starting Point” discussion on truth in scripture and the bible as the ultimate authority in our lives. Below is Louie Giglio’s incredible explanation of the molecule “Laminin”.