THIS WEEK, I’m honored to be the featured VIDEO over at CreativeMondays.net! Headed up by the amazing Tim Noxsinz, I got connected to the #CreativeMondays community several months ago and feel humbled to be their first feature of the new year. I’m constantly amazed at the amount of talent and creativity in this crew. You can connect with them via Twitter on the #CreativeMondays open space, or on their website!
A few months ago, my 5 year old daughter had the privilege of being the flower girl in my niece’s wedding. Convinced she was an actual princesses for the night, I spent most of the reception time dancing with her…laughing, being silly…until she wore out around 10:30. After we got home around midnight, I wrote this song….
Hope you enjoy!
A rough demo of one of my #CreativeMondays projects…a recent co-write with friend/lyricist Mark Lambert.
For all of us who live beautifully crazy lives, and love it.
Several weeks ago, I connected with a group of creatives doing some open-space sharing as #CreativeMondays. (h/t to @timitude!) Not only is it inspiring and motivating, but it also has helped keep me accountable to the muse…I’m trying to constantly be spiritually and creatively tuned-in and receptive because I know another #CreativeMonday is around the corner and I want to have something to show for it.
Here’s my most-recent #CreativeMondays project. Enjoy!
It is one thing to study the war.
It’s another altogether to live the warrior’s life.
-Telamon of Arcadia, 5th Century mercenary
What will you do today? Study the war or live the warrior’s life?
*Disclaimer: our beloved blog was hacked here at tomcottar.org, so this is actually a repost…but it’s been so long, it feels like a New Music Monday…
My wife and I were having a conversation about reconciliation. Making things right. But not just relationships in our lives or with people we know. We were talking about what it would looks like when God makes all things right. That would be nothing short of awe-inspiring. Awe-filling.
In the most literal way…that would be awesome.
But, of course, that has to start with me.
So in the week that followed, we wrote a song titled Love Wins and the band recorded it on our latest CD. If you haven’t heard it, you can listen to it below.
Be encouraged. When we surrender, when we tap out, Love wins.
TWENTY YEARS AGO on this date, I stood before some of the most important people in my life and made the best decision I could ever make: to marry the girl who captured my heart.
I would not be who I am without her constant love, her consistent support, and her wonderful companionship. I'm blessed beyond measure.
Happy 20th Anniversary!
Last night, I made a mad dash to our local SuperTarget to pick up three things. Only three. And for a guy like me, that means I can be in-and-out in three minutes. Unless something happens.
And it did.
I was spotted by an elderly Korean couple who was having trouble deciding on a grill. They wanted the black one, but the only boxes on display were green, red and sand color. When they waved me over to ask for help, I figured it would be an easy task. Until they started speaking. In KOREAN. At least I think it was Korean. Since I don’t speak Korean, I’m guessing a little bit here….as far as I could interpret, it could have been Klingon or Hopelandic. (I think I would’ve recognized the latter…thank you, Sigur Ros.) I quickly recognized that my English would be a HUGE barrier to my helping, so you know what I did? I started speaking…in SPANISH. Yep. I’m that guy.
“No mas negro…pero solo rojo y verde…. Que quiere?”
There was no response from the couple. To make things worse, when that didn’t do the trick, I resorted back to speaking English. Only this time, much more loudly and slowly. Because that always helps.
“THERE…IS…..NOOOOOO MORE……BLACK……….ALLL GONE…..THERE….IS……RED……AND GREEN………REEEEED…….AND…..GREEEEEEN…..”
Yep, again. I’m that guy. How embarrassing. I am the stereotypical goofball making rookie mistakes. After almost ten minutes (which I learned later, in Korean space-time is sufficient to realize the Awkward Anglo is absolutely of no use whatsoever…and still leave just over 9 minutes to figure out how to get away from him), a Target employee came to help, so I graciously tapped out. “Good luck, bro….I hope they figure it out…………if not….well….that’s too bad, I guess.”
Then I drove home thinking about The Church.
Week after week, people outside of our church culture visit our services, come to events, or strike up conversations at the lake. If we don’t speak their language, we just start speaking our own….trying to superimpose our cultural jargon into their experience….hoping for osmosis. “What? Oh….it’s about the blood……yeah, justification…..salvation……..sanctification……….it’s all good. You know, a personal relationship….with a man who’s been dead for 2000 years….but he’s actually still alive. Huh? No, you can’t visit him. Until you die…then it’s too late. No, he’s not a zombie…He’s in Heaven, living forever and he can give you eternal life, too. Oh…’eat my flesh and drink my blood’? That’s another discussion……”
Not that we shouldn’t be having those conversations. But without investing time into a relationship, I’m afraid we blow it like I did with the Korean couple. And I’ve gotta take the speck out of my own eye first….
As Christians, where are we blowing it? What do you see us doing that makes as much sense as speaking Spanish to an elderly Korean couple?
Almost a year ago I asked my movie-star-song-writing buddy what the secret was to writing a great song. His answer?
"Tell the truth…they're dying for the truth."
For me and the rest of the Second Mile gang, the truth is we live in abundance. We don't really worry where our next meal will come from. Or if we'll die from malaria. Or if we can get clean water to drink. We worry about getting a new iPad. Or new shoes. Or updating my cell plan so I can have unlimited data. Instead of worrying about starving to death, we worry that we're too fat.
But our friends in Kampala, Uganda have different worries. They actually NEED clean water. Food. Mosquito nets. So our plan is simple. From now thru the end of May, ALL of the proceeds from CD sales will go directly to Rafiki Africa Ministries, so Joseph and Sara can care for the children in the Rafiki orphanage. Every time you download a song or purchase a $5 CD, that money will go directly to the care of the children pictured above.
Psalm 82 tells us to "Defend the weak and fatherless…the poor and oppressed", and you can participate in that! For $5, you not only get your hands on the debut Second Mile CD, you can also help feed, clothe, immunize, educate, and take the gospel to the children of Kampala!