Monday, December 29, 2008

that guitar man

My wife and I did a weekend in NYC this past October. On Saturday, we spent the day in the park (translation: Central Park) and during a walk from 59th up to the reservoir and back again, we heard music playing as we approached Strawberry Fields.

We've come to find out we were listening to David Ippolito, "That Guitar Man from Central Park". We sat there for nearly four hours, listening to rock classics and folk songs written by David... a time that ended only because the sun set over the Lake. (We've since gone back to hear him play again).

David describes himself as "probably the least religious man you’ll ever meet.” But he also claims to have "more faith than anyone you’ll meet." The combination is a welcome blessing.

We went to his annual in-door concert this past month. As he started on one of his own songs, he ducked as if he was about to be hit by lightening. This tune is called "The Religion Song", and if you listen to the music he certainly takes aim at organized religion, but you'll hear words being sung by someone who has been touched by the grace that is God.

Any God small enough to understand
can't be big enough to help.

Interestingly, David came into my radar later in December via the religion pages on the New York Times... a touching Christmas-time story that again captures the simple truth that "the most real things in this life are the things we can’t see".

So I sit here thinking... there are a world of Davids out there. Men and women who have been touched by God. People who feel His amazing grace. With insights into His truth. But who have been so turned off by the walls created by religion that they can barely say His name.

And I wish I had an answer. A way to go up to people and say, "forget about what you've seen in the papers and on TV... I would like to introduce you to the real Jesus... he's like you in so many ways. I think he has something special for you... a gift... a gift of joy, peace and love... greater than you've ever felt before... "

But like the church, I am an imperfect messenger. Flawed and broken. Inconsistent.

So I take comfort knowing that while I don't have an answer today, God does. Even if it's too big for me to understand.


flyawaynet said...

I love that line about any God small enough, not being big enough. It's clarifying - because so many times I've asked Him to be small enough to understand. But I need a big God to save.

Thanks for posting this.

Ed G. said...

it is cool, isn't it. thanks for stopping by and leaving a few words.