Thursday, July 30, 2009

Mike Roe and Michael Miller

About 30 people came out Wednesday night to see, in the words of Mike Roe, "the only concert in town" featuring Roe and opening act Michael Miller.

$299 in free will offerings was given to the family of Gavin Schlatter, a seven year old boy dealing with a long term illness.

Roe performed songs from his new release, "We All Gonna Face the Rising Sun," a collection of obscure, old-time gospel songs. He also played tunes from the latest 77s release and material from the Lost Dogs.

And in the "most unusual moment of the evening," Michael Miller was nearly arrested by Little River's police officer, when he entered the Senior Center to arrest a Michael Miller--just not the Michael Miller who came to perform.

My thanks to the Congregational Church and Linda Miller for making the evening a reality!
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Michael Roe Benefit Concert July 29

Singer, songwriter, and versatile guitarist Michael Roe, along with opening performer Michael Miller, will perform a benefit concert on Wednesday evening, July 29, 7:30pm, at the Sr. Center stage, 220 Main St., Little River, Kansas.

The free will offering will benefit the family of Gavin Schlatter, a seven year old boy suffering from a long term illness.

Roe (The 77’s, The Lost Dogs) is an autumnal, bluesy, introspective kind of guy who is a master on any guitar put in his hands. Vocally and stylistically he spans the years from Chuck Berry, to Elvis Presley, to Johnny Cash, to Neil Young, to Art Garfunkel.

His new release, "We All Gonna Face the Rising Sun" pays tribute to the raw old-time gospel performers from the turn of the century, like Blind Willie Johnson, Charlie Patton and Lead Belly. "I listened to hundreds of songs to come up with these," he says of the 11 tracks on Rising Sun. "It's one thing to like a song, but quite another to feel it, and to feel like I can pull off performing it with some kind of authenticity."

Roe can cover any genre and any style without skipping a beat. He is an all-things-to-all men guitarist/vocalist for the rootsy, collaborative group the Lost Dogs. Regardless of the hat he is wearing, Michael Roe has, over the course of his 25+ years as a national recording artist, delivered well-crafted songs and lyrics to his audience.

Michael Miller
is out on the road supporting his second album, "I Made You Up." Bringing together a peculiar mixture of influences ranging from songwriter Steve Forbert to Supertramp to David Bowie, Miller lures listeners with stories of ordinary lives in familiar and far away places. "I just love getting lost, literally, in strange lands, hanging with the locals, the natives, and seeing how they live. It's sort of like soul mining. I get to go dig for beauty and truth in other people's backyards and the discoveries and treasure-finds typically end up in my songs in some way."

Michael Roe has carved out a body of work that is broad, deep, well regarded and much acclaimed. On a personal note, I've been a fan of Mike's for more than 20 years. I'm pleased to welcome him back to small town America.

Earlier, this show required the purchase of tickets, but the Little River Congregational Church has graciously covered the expenses of the performers.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Go Tom Watson!

Tom Watson is nearly 60 years old, yet after three rounds he's leading the British Open, one of the world's most prestigious golf tournaments.

Watson, a Kansas native, played in the 2006 US Senior Open at Prairie Dunes Country Club in nearby Hutchinson. I snapped this photo of Watson on # 2 during a practice round.

If Watson can win the Open on Sunday, it would be one of sports' astounding feats. Go Tom!
Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 17, 2009

History Repeats Itself

Check out this cartoon that was created during President Franklin Roosevelt's time.

It was inspired by painting "The Sower" from J.F. Millet (1814-1875).

Does not history repeat itself?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

My Rote Prayer

The other day my wife and I were praying with one of our kids before bed. The kids still say the rote, "Now I lay me down to sleep" and so to teach them to pray beyond that, my wife invites the kids to go further by prodding them, "Say something special."

Valerie, my middle child, then said a short prayer that I often say with the kids at breakfast. The kids have heard this prayer from me regularly, but yesterday was the first time I actually heard one of the kids say it themselves. It goes something like this. Call it Ted's rote prayer:

"Dear God, thank you for this brand new day. Thank you for all the things we're going to see, do, and learn. Help us to love you and obey you. Help us to love and obey our parents and our teachers. (A sentence about any particular need). We pray in Jesus name, Amen."

And that's my prayer for you today.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Psalm 22 and 23

The other day I talked with a local retired pastor over lunch about my burnout. He understood. He's was once there too.

He said, "Have you ever noticed that Psalm 22 and 23 are right next to each other?"

Psalm 22 speaks of despair. Jesus cited its opening words on the cross, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" On the other hand, Psalm 23 is one of the most famous passages in Scripture, for it assures the believer of God's personal presence and love.

The retired pastor continued, "I believe you can't fully appreciate Psalm 23 until you've lived Psalm 22. And if you've never lived Psalm 22, you're experience of Psalm 23 is superficial."

Having lived more recently on the Psalm 22 side, I'm appreciating all the more Psalm 23.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Pastor Burn Out

While on vacation in Ohio, I read a story about a man who stepped out in front of a truck on a busy highway and ended his life. At first, I thought, "How could he do that?" But then I sympathized. The man must have been in deep despair.

I can relate to that desperate feeling. For the last year, the best description of myself and my pastorate is burn out.

When you're burned out, every problem is magnified. Your heart is burdened with depression. You want to quit and give up.

Whenever my wife said, "Let's get help," I replied, "It's not that bad," "I can handle it," "It'll eventually pass," or "Leave me alone." But the despair kept lingering.

Finally, my wife gently conned me to visit Pastor Dennis & Billie Henderson at Monday Morning Ministry, near Sherman, Texas. We spent the week relaxing and talking with two seasoned veterans. What we experienced wasn't professional therapy. We heard the Henderson's story and they heard ours. It was just what I needed. In many respects, it was a life saver. I've come home with a renewed sense that God is good. And I come home with a renewed realization of the priority of prayer.

If you're a pastor feeling desperate and burned out, you need to step out of your comfort zone and find someone who will seriously listen to your story. As Dennis says, hundreds of lives are adversely affected when a pastor who leaves the ministry. Call Monday Morning Ministry.

As for me, this burned out flame is slowly coming back to life.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

I'm Now on Twitter

I'm now on Twitter. Follow me here:

This article by Michael Hyatt convinced me.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Numeric Trivia

At five minutes and six seconds after 4 AM on the 8th of July this year, the time and date will be 04:05:06 07/08/09.


And as a relative said in response to the above, "Did you know that precisely 4 minutes past 5:00pm on 7/7/09…it will be 5:04pm on 7/7/09! This is the only time this will happen – incredible!