Thursday, March 29, 2007

I'm With the Band

this is me...
see how cool and
calm I look...
with the lead singer of Audio Adrenaline (Mark), my friend Katie, and Marlon the merchandiser (I have no idea what he is doing...he looks like he's never seen a camera before).

A couple of weeks ago, MercyMe and Audio Adrenaline were here in Minot in concert. Katie and I were the fastest to volunteer for the job of being "runners" for the band. We had no idea what that meant, but it sounded fun and ended up looking like this.

1. Arrive at 8am to sit, wait, and watch the truck drivers and day laborers unload the trucks.

2. Meet the tour manager, and get given the first task of the day. To run to the hardware store for rope. Yawn. But it's okay...I'm helping the band with lighting.

3. Run to the store for soap. Apparently the venue forgot to provide that for the bands...ick!

4. Call 4 laundromats in town to find out that no one does really quick turnaround for laundry in this place. Don't they know that the band needs clean clothes?! Call a friend who is now responsible for doing MercyMe's laundry. Poor Annie.

5. Oh, now for the time to impress the tour manager. Call FedEx to arrange a pickup at my office. Don't mention that the reason I am going there is to drop off 3 loads of dirty band underwear. By the way, if any of that shows up on ebay...I disavow any prior knowledge.

6. Eat the catered lunch (a really yummy chicken sandwich and salad). Very reservedly and with much cool read a magazine while surreptitiously watching the guys in the band. Realize that I would make a lousy a few of the guys in the band are the same ones that I was earlier chatting with in the tour manager's office. Duh. First forehead slap of the day.

7. Quickly eat my lunch so I can run to the pharmacy to refill one of the guys prescriptions.

8. Drop the MercyMe guys (yes, really) off at the movie theater. A side note: Bart Millard (lead singer) was mocking me for carrying a phone book in my purse...normally, it's in my car, but remember that I had been calling laundromats I told him to "shut up". But in a really nice that the rest of the guys in the car laughed and said I was their favorite runner ever. Oh, yes, that's me! There's another forehead slap.

9. Katie and I take both cars to the mall to pick up the MM guys and realize that the tour manager has forgotten to have one of us pick up Aaron Schust (the opener) at the airport. Katie saves the day and runs to the airport with a couple of MM guys. I, very importantly, must get Bart (who is speaking to me again) back for his sound check with the guitar player.

10. Pick up the now clean laundry for the band. Do much grovelling in thanks to Annie.

11. Take the AudioA guys to Starbucks. I cannot even tell you how cool I am just for being able to do this. Sing Aretha Franklin songs on the way back to the venue. Tell them how when we were leaving Omaha in the UHaul their "Goodbye" song was on the radio and made me cry. Sing more R-E-S-P-E-C-T until I hit a big pothole and just about make the bass player spill hot coffee all over my upholstery.

12. Katie and I go to the local Wal-Mart to get snacks and supplies for the tour buses. For $29.95 I'll tell you what each band likes to eat. Okay, I am kidding...I won't ever tell!

13. Oh, and then there was a concert. Which rocked. And I got a little teary during the "Goodbye" song. But I must confess that what I really liked was being able to walk right past security. Because I'm with the band.

Momentary Panic

We had a fantastic thunderstorm last night, and ND really does need the moisture, but one of the drawbacks was the power outage this morning. That really didn't bother it was a good excuse to light all the candles. What did cause me the momentary panic was the remembrance that I now work on the 8th floor of our building...with no power to the elevators.

Phew...the electric company came through at 7:10am. I'm saved!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Way that Leads to Death

The Church Walking With the World
Matilda C Edwards
from Best Loved Poems 1936

The Church and the World walked far apart
On the changing shores of time,
The World was singing a giddy song,
And the Church a hymn sublime.

“Come, give me your hand,” said the merry World,
“And walk with me this way!”
But the good Church hid her snowy hands
And solemnly answered “Nay!

I will not give you my hand at all,
And I will not walk with you;
Your way is the way that leads to death;
Your words are all untrue.”

“Nay, walk with me but a little space,”
Said the World with a kindly air;
“The road I walk is a pleasant road,
And the sun shines always there.

Your path is thorny and rough and rude,
But mine is broad and plain;
My way is paved with flowers and dews,
And yours with tears and pain.

The sky to me is always blue,
No want, no toil I know;
The sky above you is always dark,
Your lot is a lot of woe.
There’s room enough for you and me
To travel side by side.”

Half shyly the Church approached the World
And gave him her hand of snow;
And the old World grasped it and walked along,
Saying, in accents low:

“Your dress is too simple to please my taste;
I will give you pearls to wear,
Rich velvets and silks for your graceful form,
And diamonds to deck your hair.”

The Church looked down at her plain white robes,
And then at the dazzling World,
And blushed as she saw his handsome lip
With a smile contemptuous curled.

“I will change my dress for a costlier one,”
Said the Church, with a smile of grace;
Then her pure white garments drifted away,
And the World gave, in their place,
Beautiful satins and shining silks,
Roses and gems and costly pearls;
While over her forehead her bright hair fell
Crisped in a thousand curls.

“Your house is too plain,” said the proud old World,
“I’ll build you one like mine;
With walls of marble and towers of gold,
And furniture ever so fine.”

So he built her a costly and beautiful house;
Most splendid it was to behold;
Her sons and her beautiful daughters dwelt there
Gleaming in purple and gold.

Rich fairs and shows in the halls were held,
And the World and his children were there.
Laughter and music and feasts were heard
In the place that was meant for prayer.

There-were cushioned seats for the rich and the gay,
To sit in their pomp and pride;
But the poor who were clad in shabby array,
Sat meekly down outside.

“You give too much to the poor,” said the World.
“Far more than you ought to do;
If they are in need of shelter and food,
Why need it trouble you?

Go, take your money and buy rich robes,
Buy horses and carriages fine;
Buy pearls and jewels and dainty food,
Buy the rarest and costliest wine.

My children, they dote on all these things,
And if you their love would win
You must do as they do, and walk in the ways
That they are walking in.”

So the poor were turned from her door in scorn,
And she heard not the orphan’s cry;
But she drew her beautiful robes aside,
As the widows went weeping by.

Then the sons of the World and the Sons of the Church
Walked closely hand and heart,
And only the Master, who knoweth all,
Could tell the two apart.

Then the Church sat down at her ease, and said,
“I am rich and my goods increase;
I have need of nothing, or aught to do,
But to laugh, and dance, and feast.”

The sly World heard, and he laughed in his sleeve,
And mockingly said, aside-
“The Church is fallen, the beautiful Church;
And her shame is her boast and her pride.”

The angel drew near to the mercy seat,
And whispered in sighs her name;
Then the loud anthems of rapture were hushed,
And heads were covered with shame.

And a voice was heard at last by the Church
From Him who sat on the throne,

“I know thy works, and how thou hast said,
‘I am rich, and hast not known
That thou art naked, poor and blind,
And wretched before my face;’
Therefore from my presence cast I thee out,
And blot thy name from its place.”

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Rough Week

Well, that's an understatement. Our boss, and dear friend, lost his mother this weekend. Another friend here on the ministry team flew out to CA to see her father before he was taken off of life-support. He passed away early this morning. I have had 2 deaths of friends in the last week.

Times like this make me think of the glory of eternity with Christ. At the MercyMe concert last Thursday, while playing "I Can Only Imagine", the big screens displayed pictures of people holding photos of loved ones who had died. There was one in particular that really caught my attention. It was a little boy who held a framed photo of what I assume was his grandpa. The boy had just the faintest hint of a smile, as though in the midst of his missing Grandpa, he knew that Grandpa wouldn't choose to come back. He was rejoicing in the arms of Jesus.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Tea Party

My new friend Elyse hosted an Afternoon Tea at her home this past Sunday. She had the most delicious assortment of food, including homemade clotted cream and marmalade on scones. Deeelicious!
And, as the icing on the lemon layer cake, a young woman that a few of us ladies have been ministering to, and praying for, gave her life to Christ in Elyse's livingroom after the Tea.
What would have been a good time ended up being so much more.