hey everyone, So i’m sitting in my hotel room as i write this eating a pack of Entenmann’s Powdered donuts and a Vitamin Water, listening to Roosevelt Sykes on Pandora. it’s amazing to see God work. we’re in the middle of a 3 day tour throughout NY, NJ & PA. last night was fantastic in [...]
So i’m sitting in my hotel room as i write this eating a pack of Entenmann’s Powdered donuts and a Vitamin Water, listening to Roosevelt Sykes on Pandora.
it’s amazing to see God work. we’re in the middle of a 3 day tour throughout NY, NJ & PA. last night was fantastic in hopewell junction, so much so that it inspired someone in the audience to send me the following email:
Thanks so much for your amazing worship tonight at the Backstage Cafe, at the Vineyard Community Church. You guys completely blessed our community. Wonderful, heartfelt worship from a truly gifted and genuine group of fellow followers of Jesus.
It’s amazing & encouraging to get these emails. Really validates what we do. The main goal of every show i think is to give people the freedom to worship & experience God through the music He’s given to us.
After last night we drove to Quakertown PA today & played a show there tonight. I really was discouraged at the beginning of the show because there was such a small crowd there, almost seemed like it was worthless to actually play. But a funny thing happened, over the course of the show, over the course of God’s name being lifted up & us continuing to see people worshiping, praying, and responding in their own way, God showed up. He worked His way through the room & touched, i think, each and every life that was there tonight. We ended up seeing 2 kids get sponsored via World Vision which is an incredible thing. 2 more lives pulled out of poverty & into hope. Multiple comments about how it was just amazing to worship God. awesome stuff.
So thanks to all who came out tonight in Quakertown & all that came out last night in Hopewell Junction, NY. we love worshiping with you & joining you in drawing everyone in the room closer to God. we’re really looking forward to bloomfield NJ tomorrow evening. see you there….
The Weekly Walk – June 15, 2012 I went to the Songwriters Hall of Fame dinner last night in Times Square. Such a cool evening celebrating some amazing songwriters. Songwriters honored were: Bob Seger, Gordon Lightfoot, Don Schlitz (wrote “the gambler” ’nuff said), Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones (wrote “the fantasticks” which ran on broadway [...]
The Weekly Walk – June 15, 2012
I went to the Songwriters Hall of Fame dinner last night in Times Square. Such a cool evening celebrating some amazing songwriters. Songwriters honored were: Bob Seger, Gordon Lightfoot, Don Schlitz (wrote “the gambler” ’nuff said), Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones (wrote “the fantasticks” which ran on broadway for 43 years, ’nuff said), Jim Steinman (meatloaf’s right hand man, sold over 160 million records, ’nuff said), Bette Midler, Ne-Yo, Woody Guthrie, Jerry Lieber & Mike Stoller (wrote “hound dog”, “stand by me” amongst others), Ben E. King. Performers included: Bob Seger, Emmylou Harris, Stevie Nicks, Ben E. King, Cheyenne Jackson, LP, Take 6, Kenny Rogers, Steve Miller, Meatloaf, Valerie Simpson.
Amazing performances, probably the best version of “the rose” that i’ve ever heard done by Stevie Nicks. The night made me thankful that i’m actually in this business.
So that was cool but as i was walking back to my office after the show, it was about 11:30pm at night. I can’t say the streets are deserted because it’s New York City and it never shuts off but i was confronted with an odd site. There were campers all over the sidewalk on 48th street. i watched this line of folks and studied them for a minute. this line of people in sleeping bags was over 5 blocks long, it went around 48th street and up 5th avenue. now, i’ve seen people camping out for tickets, for important shows etc, but as i studied the crowd it became increasingly clear that this was something different. the average age of these kids sleeping out on a hard new york city sidewalk was 10 – 12 years old. these were little girls, hundreds of them, wanting to be first in line to see their idol, Justin Bieber.
Where have we gone wrong? What is happening to society? I get the whole, “i’m a fan” thing. i love my fans, i love people that support what i do, it’s the life blood of any recording artist. Justin supports his fans as well, he loves them. i totally get that but…..here we have 8, 9 & 10 year old girls sleeping on a hard sidewalk in New York City just to catch a glimpse of some kid who got lucky doing his thing. I’m not naive, i understand the way the world works but i would never let my daughter sleep out with her friends in NYC just to see this kid. And what would they do if they actually got to touch him or converse with him. They’d probably faint because he looked at them.
As a parent i’m trying to raise my kids to NOT be so enamored by the celebrity status. it’s so hard because it’s pushed into their lives so regularly and so often. we need to find ways to regulate it, to make it OK to not be beautiful, to not be perfect, to not have everyone love you. a person is a person, whether they are the dude that has the lead in the latest hollywood movie, or the woman that takes your ticket at the theatre. they are just people. we are all here doing the same thing. trying to survive whatever this world will throw at us.
i pray every night that my kids will follow Jesus and look up to Jesus. That they will make Him the most important thing in their lives. i can guide them that way but only they can make that decision. this celebrity obsession that our society has gets in the way of that message. it beats it down daily. i don’t want to be a “fan” of Jesus like we’re fans of hollywood stars, musicians etc. i want to be a follower. I want to follow His word, follow who He was, not just buy His book and read it. buy His book and live it. Follow in his footsteps, try to be like who He was and still is.
So fine, be a fan of Bieber, be a fan of whoever you’re a fan of. That’s totally cool. But be a follower of Jesus, not a fan, a follower. I’m reading an incredibly compelling and challenging book right now called “not a fan” by kyle idelman. in it he takes this thought process to new levels. i highly encourage that you read it. find the difference between the fan and the follower of Jesus. you can find it here
Hope you’re all well. I thought i’d follow up my Facebook post about a car ride into the city worshiping with Bruce Springsteen with a longer blog post here. not sure if anyone has the new Bruce record “Wrecking Ball” yet but it’s outstanding. He tackles a lot of different things and this isn’t going [...]
Hope you’re all well. I thought i’d follow up my Facebook post about a car ride into the city worshiping with Bruce Springsteen with a longer blog post here. not sure if anyone has the new Bruce record “Wrecking Ball” yet but it’s outstanding. He tackles a lot of different things and this isn’t going to turn into a record review but i wanted to focus on 2 songs, tracks 9 & 10. “Rocky Ground” and “Land of Hope and Dreams”.
Not sure if anyone else does this, I actually hope you do, but I’m a big fan of worshiping in the car on the ride into work every day. i’ve got about a 45 minute commute each morning & try to find different ways to worship each day. some days it’s music, some days it’s listening to readings of the bible, some days it’s listening to sermons from various preachers. this particular morning it was worship with Bruce Springsteen. let me give you some lyrics to these 2 songs:
Track 9: Rocky Ground:
Rise up shepherd, rise up, Your flock has roamed far from the hills
Stars have faded, the sky is still, Sun’s in the heavens and a new day’s rising
You use your muscle and your mind and you pray your best
That your best is good enough, the Lord will do the rest
You raise your children and you teach them to walk straight and sure
You pray that hard times, hard times, come no more
You try to sleep, you toss and turn, the bottom’s dropping out
Where you once had faith now there’s only doubt
You pray for guidance, only silence now meets your prayers
The morning breaks, you awake but no one’s there
We’ve been traveling over rocky ground, rocky ground, There’s a new day coming
(c) 2012 Bruce Springsteen
and Track 10: Land of Hope and Dreams:
I will provide for you, And I’ll stand by your side
You’ll need a good companion now, for this part of the ride
Leave behind your sorrows, Let this day be the last
Tomorrow there’ll be sunshine, And all this darkness past
Big wheels roll through fields, Where sunlight streams
Meet me in a land of hope and dreams
This train, Carries saints and sinners
This train, Carries losers and winners
This Train, Carries whores and gamblers
This Train, Carries lost souls
This Train, Dreams will not be thwarted
This Train, Faith will be rewarded
This Train, Hear the steel wheels singin’
This Train, Bells of freedom ringin’
This Train, Carries broken-hearted
This Train, Thieves and sweet souls departed
This Train, Carries fools and kings
This Train, All aboard
(c) 2012 Bruce Springsteen
Both songs speak of hope and clearly speak of faith & speak of new days coming. Yes, these are very universal themes, themes that can be taken in many different ways but on this particular day, in my car, with the sun shining and the windows down, as i looked over the Hudson River…Bruce was preaching to me. Feeding my soul. Bringing me a little closer to the God that i believe in. The God that looks down and says, “I’m here”, I’m the One that will see you through the rocky ground, i’m the One that will be here when all else fails. I’m the One that will bring you to the land of hope and dreams. I sent my Son to do nothing else but that, provide a way for you to enter the land of hope and dreams. I sent my Son to die for you so that you could get on that train and live with Me forever. Your faith will be rewarded, your broken heart will be restored, your hurt will be replaced with joy. Pain will be overcome by goodness and hope will come. No matter what, hope will come. Hope will prevail. Whatever you’re going through, know that. Our God continues push hope through the darkness.
I needed that that morning. I needed this & God came through. Who knows if Bruce knew that when he wrote those songs he’d be leading worship on that Wednesday morning. It doesn’t really matter. All i know is that when God wants to speak to you, don’t wait for the voice from heaven to come booming down. Turn on a little Bruce Springsteen. The Real Boss used the other boss to speak to me that morning.
Here’s “Land of Hope and Dreams” from a performance in New York City: