My new best friend…..

[[image:newsnare.jpg::center:0]]…is a drum. I am in the process of getting a new drum-set this week. Three of the four drums arrived today and I think it could be the start of something truly beautiful. I love drums. It’s what I do. Getting new drums is for me like when a carpenter gets a brand new set of tools. For some reason, I just have this weird connection with the drums. The woodwork, the chrome, the personality, the sound, the buzz….it all hypnotizes me.

Drums are very complex instruments. They aren’t easy to get sounding right. You can’t just throw on new drum heads and expect to hear a beautiful tone. It takes a certain intimacy (yes, i said intimacy) and connection with the drum in order to find out what it likes. You have to work to find the drum’s voice. You have to allow it to sing. You can’t take a drum and simply make it sound the way YOU want it to. In order for you get the greatest sound you can out of the drum, you have to simply allow the drum to show you where it’s greatest tone resides. Getting to the point where one is able to do this doesn’t come from reading books or even copying others, but only by spending time with the drums and an fair amount of trial and error.

Today, as I opened the box to my new snare drum, it was the beginning of this “connection” process. I didn’t want to start striking it right away. I wanted to simply look at it, figure out it’s personality. I double checked for any common flaws or signs of mishandling. I gently tapped the drum with my index finger to get a general sense of it’s initial tone. So far so good I must say. It’s a beautiful snare drum and I would have to say it’s already one of my best wood snares, but it’s early. Only time can tell I guess. We’ll see how it does “at the office”.

Last night at bible study, Jamie told us a story of some pastors that came into the coffee shop where she works. One of Jamie’s coworkers is not a Christian nor had any interest at this point in her life in exploring what it means to be one. She was working the counter when the pastors, who were also complete strangers, were placing their order. After ordering they asked her “Do you know that Jesus loves you?” She replies uncomfortably, “Uh, I have Jesus’ phone number blocked on my caller I.D. so I wouldn’t know.”

It’s pretty clear as human beings we have an amazing capacity to show interest in things. For me it’s really easy to be interested in all things “drums”. It’s so much a part of my life, I can’t escape it. What’s sad is that the hardest things for us to be truly interested in is other people. Maybe it’s because showing real interest in others could lead to being inconvenienced. Maybe it’s just the regular social fear that we share to a certain extent. But if you really think about it, if an individual felt like there were others in their life that were genuinely interested in them, they could catch a glimpse of how full of love this world could be. Not just their moms and dads and close friends, but from those who they would least expect it. And not just a self serving interest, but an agenda-free, relational foundation type of interest.

I would file “Do you know Jesus loves you?” as a sentence that is full of agenda and that comes from a selfish posture. It may not seem so on the surface, especially coming from a pastor who is reading his bible in the corner at a coffee shop. But sadly, it’s what we’ve come to expect. It’s unfair really to rip this pastor because he’s an easy target. Take myself for example, I do the exact same thing. Maybe I don’t creep people out as badly in the process but my lack of agenda-free interest in others is just as ugly. I pray that God can show me ways to stop and show interest. Even if it’s just a brief encounter or the kind of interest that throws a wrench in your daily schedule. I pray that our bumper sticker evangelism and our unwillingness to be genuinely interested in others be exposed as the brittle shells of real faith and love that they truly are.


12 thoughts on “My new best friend…..

  1. Growing up in a fundamental Baptist church for 18 years, I did my share of ‘door-to-door witnessing’. Although we had the occasional interest in a day, we encountered doors slamming in our faces more often. I think people who wear their religion on their sleeves to ‘be a witness’ forget that God can speak to a lost person way better than we can ever attempt.

  2. Hmmm… I really don’t think we need to know how you get intimate with your drums. 🙂

    Hey, I used to live in the city where DW is located… And, you guys are coming out to where I live now. Cool!

  3. Mmmm — that DW is pretty sexy, I must say. I had a maple pearl free-floater 3 1/2 inch snare drum in high school and college that sang. Always loved that girl, and I miss her now….

  4. ah… after reading this entry, i was out in my garage today and saw my drum kit. it is ludwig silver sparkle. quite beat up and trashed. i packed that thing in a television box and it went on a plane with me to england when i was in the band over there for a year. we had no money in england, so i stole a supermarket cart and that is what i kept my drums in and would push them from our apartment to the rehearsal studio in them. one time the Pogues drummer couldn’t get his kit to the pub we were opening and he used mine. many memories i thought through looking at those beat up drums sitting in my garage today.

    see you in sacramento,


  5. I wish more people would treat the bible as you do your drums.

    Tap it a few times, read it, see what it says to you, not what some one tells you it should say.

    Ever notice how musicians always regret the ones that got away? I don’t think the drummer in my band ever got over being forced to sell his first nice kit. He is also having a hard time adjusting to different cymbals since the last ones got stolen at a show 😦

    Is it ok to believe in forgivness and hope for some one to have bad karma? 🙂

  6. Good points all around. Very well said about the drums; as loud as they are, they are still very tender, fickle creatures that require the love and attention that you’d give a newborn. When they’re good, they’re good, and when they’re bad, they drive you nuts.

    And very good point about the coffee shop preacher. I always felt that I had some issue with that blind question, and you put it into words.

  7. i know it’s easy to be cynical about something like ‘jesus loves you’ comments. especially because we feel that we are so sophicated and adept at our apologetics and theology. But, it’s really all we need to know.

    As a wild young woman, my wife was working as a waitress, and behold one day an elderly man grabbed her wrist gently and said, “don’t be sad. jesus loves you.” She retreated to the back room and sobbed. Months later, she transformed her life and began working on her friend, Vineire.

    I dare say, it really is as simple as “Jesus loves you…” It’s a good start. We should be praying for that co-worker, to pick up the next time Jesus calls.

  8. Which is not to say that it can’t be used in a smug, self-serving way as described in the post. But just remember that those words may in fact be planting a mustard seed, no matter how overly simplistic it seems at time. I done. Thanks.

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