Thursday, July 21, 2011
Flashback of a different color
When I was in my 20’s and a fresh college drop out with a boyfriend several years my senior, I went to a party in a townhouse too small to hold the 45 people who showed up to celebrate someone’s birthday. Wedged in the corner between the wobbly card table holding the hodge podge of all our alcohol which had been toted in swaddled in small brown bags and the couch with the floral print inherited from someone’s mother who decided it was too 1985 after the cat shredded the left arm rest and the cigarette burn hole in the middle cushion had started to spread was a small stereo with a double tape deck. That old radio was playing mixed tapes at a medium volume which somehow managed to mix everything from Sweet Home Alabama to the current (at the time) Ace of Base party songs. Amidst the CCR, TimMcGraw, Vanilla Ice and Dr. Dre random party playlist was a single Journey song and when the first cord hit the air in that room, the whole room dynamic changed. The entire room, wedged with over intoxicated, slightly over heated and definitely over fluffed for the opposite gender party goers one by one became a singing flash mob. “When the sun goes down in the city”… line by line more people sang until the clatter of bottles and exchange of great thinkers slowly trickled into “na na na’s”. Everybody knew the words. Everybody sounded good. Anyone can sing a Journey song well after a few drinks and those that can’t…well you love them even more because their just better entertainment for the crowd. The song ended and everyone went back to the den of sin, doing what people do at 2 am on a Friday night after the lights go down in the City. This is what Christianity is like for me. It’s 45 people stuck in a tiny room trying to get what they want and hide what they need. It’s a hodge podge of awkward surroundings and hand me down ideas. It’s a few big thinkers being drowned out by 40 other people who just want to get by for the night. And every now and again if you’re lucky… it’s everybody taking a moment to be one, to sing one song at one time and love every single moment of it. Yes, I just compared the a den of sin to the ultimate salvation of man kind, but you know what… I’m right. Put 45 Christians in a room and have them right down what worship is and you’ll get 45 answers. Perspective rules the world, baby. But, put 45 Christian’s in a room and start up the worship band with a song everyone knows… and you’ll raise the hairs on every room with a 1 block radius. It’s a group thing. It’s the power of many voices raised as one. It’s the ability to leave behind what you’re thinking about just long enough to just do something. It’s doing that something like you enjoy it with every ounce of your being. It’s taking a chance that someone might hear you sing off key but it will be ok because you mean it from the bottom of your heart. It’s living in the moment. It’s not having a plan and just doing it anyhow. And somehow, I’d like to find a way to bring that feeling back to my spirituality… because somewhere, I think I lost it… I lost my love of the community, of the voices raised as one, I love that ability to live in the moment and I need to find it again.