Category Archives: Man With Guitar

Daring Greatly

VulnerabilityI’ve heard a lot about Brene Brown from my wife and from other people in our church community. Until this past week, my only experience of her ideas was this video of her TedX talk, which taught me a lot about the importance of being vulnerable and how that allows us to move past shame.

Last Thursday on my drive to Guitar Center, I started listening to one of her books titled Daring Greatly. Then today I listened to a few more chapters on my way to and back from Portland. I’m in chapter 5 of 12 and already this book is changing my life and allowing me to dispel shame simply by putting words to it. I am learning so  much from her. Here’s a sentence that really stuck out to me: “Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like Courage.”

If you don’t listen to audiobooks often, I recommend the app Audible. Here’s a link to the audiobook Daring Greatly: https://www.audible.com/pd/Self-Development/Daring-Greatly-Audiobook/B0096BOG04

Another Brene Brown book that I’ve heard good things about is Rising Strong. I’ll move to that one after I get through Daring Greatly. Lots of time on the road, perfect for listening and learning. Andi Duli refers to his car as his university on wheels. I’m using my car that way too. I’m getting smarter by the mile, or at least becoming more vulnerable.

Just Do It

img_2366I don’t blog much, pronounced “at all,” anymore, because I’m too busy living life to sit down and write about it.

Wait, that’s not entirely true. I don’t have time to sit and write the perfect, well-thought-out, highly-impacting, carefully-crafted piece that I would like to deliver. So instead I write nothing, since it can’t be perfectly planned and executed with brilliance. Does that ever stop you? Can’t do it perfectly so you don’t do it at all?

My challenge to myself this year is to stop and share an insight in the most polished form that I can muster inside of 10 minutes. The point is that even an unfinished thought expressed carries more power than a perfect thought unfired.

This is taking me to a song I learned when I was but a wee lad (who says that?). I think this off-the-cuff writing may reveal far too much about me, and now it is too late — the ship has sailed, the train is rolling.

Here’s that song that I learned over 30 years ago, and it made such an impression that 3 decades later I don’t need to look up the lyric, it’s still written on my heart:

Brighten the Corner

Do not wait until some deeds of greatness you may do

Do not wait to shed your light afar

To the many duties ever near you now be true

Brighten the corner where you are

 

Love,

Lenn

 

JWrigley Final Friday — Healing out loud

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September 30 Final Friday at JWrigley was dimly lit, and warm with the chatter of friendly conversations wafted on the earthy fragrance of pinot noir.

I haven’t been performing at wineries for the last couple years.  Partly because I wanted to simply focus on team-building in my role as worship pastor at a church. That effort is developing nicely and we have strong leaders emerging on that team, so I feel a bit more free to take on other projects.

Still, and mostly from habit, I’ve been saying “no” to winery invitations. Until a couple months ago Jody asked me to play a Final Friday at JWrigley. As soon as she asked it was “yes” in my spirit. Then as we drove back down the hill Darlene said, “I hoped you would say yes to this one!”

I’m very glad I did! We had a blast. This gig brought about a musical reunion with my two of my friends from the band We Three. They are a brilliant sibling trio band, who used to be my bandmates many years ago. We’ve not performed together in over 5 years, and this past Friday we got to revisit some of those magic memories.

Bethany is just a monster bassist and Joshua is a percussionistic force of nature! It’s so much fun playing the old tunes with these guys.

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I played alone the first hour, just Man With Guitar. That was fun too, and I think I tapped into a reservoir of passion, the insinuated sadness of our miscarriage from 2 weeks ago. We are joyful and happy, we’ve never been closer to God or one another, all that great hope-filled stuff, but the sadness is still true and real and I think some of it surfaced in my singing. I call it Healing Out Loud.

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The other thing that I felt and expressed as I sang was an ever-increasing love for my life partner best friend wife. I remember a different performance last year when I sang Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love,” and Darlene was visibly annoyed that I wasn’t singing it to her. What she didn’t know is that I actually was singing it to her — I just hadn’t told her yet! Last Friday, everybody knew who I was singing to.

I’ve been singing with Holly Kirby lately and I’m excited about where that collaboration will go. She joined me on vocals for some of my originals at this gig. Great vibe, powerful voice!

Those of you we met for the first time at Final Friday, so nice to meet you! Please do stay in touch. We love sharing our lives and stories with you! Thank you so much for your love and support. My wife and I totally felt embraced by all of you!

Pockets and veins of Joy everywhere, healing out loud!

Next stop, Youngberg Hill Winery on Wednesday October 12 (That’s Darlene’s birthday). Join us if you’re in the area. I’ll be performing with Petra Bolton that evening. She’s amazing, and so much fun! Ask her why we call her Blueberry!

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Love,

#ManWithGuitar

Facebook.com/lennoxflearymusic