I am calling this my year of jumping out of airplanes. That’s my way of saying I’m finally tackling some opportunities I’ve avoided for a number of personal reasons.
One of these is a Christmas CD, which I finally decided to make this summer. The follow up to that was a concert to premiere it. That happened last Sunday evening, Dec 2. It was truly one of the musical and personal high points of my life!
As I look back on this year I realize that I’ve said “yes” to more things than “no”.
For example, I’ve taken on the role of worship leader for LifeWay Men. These will be nationwide events where I will not only lead worship but will also have the opportunity to share my story. The first of which will be in July at the Curb Center in Nashville. LifeWay has been very generous to me with their audience and even promoted my Christmas project on their LifeWayworship.com site for download as a way of introducing me.
I was also invited to post weekly worship service outlines built around a feature song of the week for Essentialworship.com. It is a great opportunity to share some of my worship perspectives while highlighting songs that the publisher wants to make their audience aware of.
I attribute a lot of this newfound initiative to having a skydiving buddy of sorts – a best friend with whom I bounce off my ideas and goals and with whom I dream aloud. He shares his with me as well and as we begin to push and pull one another along there is a synergy that develops.
The best thing about a skydiving buddy is that they are happier for your success than you are. They help you critically assess something while at the same time throwing you a parade for accomplishing it.
My best friend, Jonathan is my case in point. He brainstormed and helped me flesh out a concert that would highlight the material and weave a theme of anticipation throughout it. Jonathan did everything from wrapping huge gift boxes for props on stage to thinking through the entire look, writing a great poem for the night, singing, and sharing his entire family with me for the weekend as we pulled it together.
Jonathan decided that my CD project deserved to be celebrated as well so he and his wife Jenny pulled off the best retro-Christmas CD release party afterward complete with homemade cookies she and other volunteers made. She brought vintage Christmas decorations she found around town and it looked like I was back in my childhood. It represented literally hours and hours of thoughtful preparation and loving attention to details.
That is more than a skydiving buddy. That is the best friend that you only get one of in your life.
I tell everyone that they need to jump out of airplanes if they want to experience what God has placed in their hearts to accomplish. Just don’t do it alone. You need that person that you strap yourself to who tells you to remember to breathe and makes sure your parachute opens.
Thanks, Johnny Boy! Well done!