If later today on my commute to the office a car failed to yield—why am I blaming someone else? maybe I will have failed to yield—and my life was over in an instant, I’m certain I will be remembered in the way I don’t really want to be remembered.
He was a great musician. Worked himself into becoming a nominal guitarist, but maybe should have just stuck to the piano. He might have cut out the coffee altogether, since it really started messing with his voice. Ah, but the man was no match for the java bean’s enticing.
He was an anointed worship leader—whatever that means. When he played and sang, somehow God’s presence would become almost palpable. Didn’t God throw a little more weight, a little more of his glory, into Matt’s worship leading despite his sin and unworthiness? Rather unfairly did God. Sort of like with David. Except there’s no evidence Matt ever killed anyone, though occasional adultery is likely, but only in his mind, as Reba McEntire once confessed. (Am I really quoting country lyrics? Why do I remember that song?)
He was a pretty good writer, kept getting better and less full of himself (except for maybe that “how does he want to be remembered” post where he sure played up his talent). He might have added video blogging (or vlogging) to his bag of tricks had he not been so concerned about his hair. And he always meant to write that book, but characters, setting, and plot never surfaced. Come to think of it, he should have been writing songs too, for as much as he criticized CCM—contemporary Christian mush.
He could at once be serious and pensive and other times humorous and disrespectful of the moment. Like now when he was supposed to be writing somberly about how he wants to be remembered.
OK, I’m back. I don’t know what just happened there. I guess what I’m driving at is that I could well be remembered for my accomplishments or my gifts, but how I really want to be remembered is the way I loved others. Which means I can’t die today. I’d better drive more carefully, since I need some time to revamp my image. I’ve backed the wrong horse, even if I’m slightly afraid of them.
That Don’t Impress Me Much
See, I grew up in church thinking it was about what you did and didn’t do. I earned the gold stars— in fact, we had several different colors that had some sort of meaning—in Sunday school and vacation Bible school and the horror (looking back) that was private church school. I was attracted to worship ministry, yes because I love music and like to help others connect with God, but also possibly because it was how I could earn approval from others and from God. Instead of loving others I’ve tried to impress them. Instead of loving and allowing God to love me, I’ve tried to impress him.
I’m through with trying to impress. Instead, I want to be known for love.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” —John 13:34-35 ESV
If I could be so candid, here is my prayer. Perhaps it could be yours.
Father, like that song we used to sing at my church growing up, I pray you would “give me a heart for others.” Teach me to love. Develop in me deep compassion for others, so that I become less self-absorbed and soak up, instead of myself, your love that I can wring it out all over everybody. May my children and my wife know me as love. May strangers in a store see something different in my eyes and be captivated by your love. May they see the light of your love and be drawn to you and give glory to you.