Video Students 5
And More Video Students
I so enjoyed Paul's email he said it was OK to post it...
I've been reading through Purpose Driven Life as well. It helps me to keep the proper perspective on my relationship with God. The past few years have been a time of growth for me. Though I have heard "die to self" for many years, I believe I finally started to get it 2 years ago.
I've been playing guitar for 20+ years, mostly in classical style. I had been wanting to play arrangements for the LORD all that time, but felt like I had to master the guitar first. I now realize this was just a matter of my pride and being stubborn. The LORD was calling me to play for Him, and I was just too stuck on what I wanted to do.
After moving to Corona, California 5 years ago, my family tried to find a church we wanted to attend. Church here was different than what we were used to in South Carolina. But almost 3 years ago we found the Calvary Chapel in Corona, which was meeting in the Civic Center. Mike Rodriguez is our pastor. David Rios, one of the original “Jesus People” is the assistant pastor and worship leader. This church is a lot different from what we were used to back east, but here we found people who were serious about growing in the LORD. It is now our home church.
I was still playing the guitar then, but had reach a plateau and really just losing interest in most everything I played. I would put the guitar away and not get it out for a month or two. There just wasn’t pleasure in it anymore.
But as I would notice during the praise and worship at church, Pastor Dave was not just playing and singing music, he was worshiping. I saw what I was missing. I had no pleasure in the music because the music I had been playing had no worthy purpose for me. The music was fine, but I was to be doing something else. I made my mind up then that I was going to play for the LORD.
I had bought Gerard Garno’s book of southern gospel arrangements several years ago, but never sat down to learn anything. I went and pulled that book out and set out to learn “Because He Lives”. Then some arrangements I found on the web - “Spirit Song”, “Our God Reigns”, “Majesty”, ...
I also ran across Rick Foster’s web site and purchased a lot of his arrangements. I now have about an hour of instrumental arrangements of sacred music memorized. And now the joy and purpose in the music is back for me. How could I have been so stubborn? I like what Pastor Dave said one night. He said I used to play to master the music, now I play music to the Master. I could not have said it better!
Last year my wife, Beverly, and I were asked to lead worship for a home bible study. The thought was I’d play guitar and Beverly would sing (She’s real good). Well, Beverly had bought your Worship Guitar video series. She wanted to play guitar and sing, which is something I had not pursued and it didn’t really fit with the style of guitar I played. But the bible study worship was to push the envelope a bit more for both of us.
I wanted to play the guitar for the study, but wanted to do more than strum chords. I didn’t know any accompaniment finger picking patterns and had not had any luck finding anything I though was good. But after watching your video, I quickly picked up a couple of the patterns you taught and use those frequently. Though I’m not a beginner, your videos have been very helpful to me in learning different styles of playing. I think it’s good you teach variety early on with beginners, and not get stuck in one style.
Beverly plays guitar with me and we both sing. Her guitar playing is getting better and better all the time, and my singing is doing a bit better too. The LORD is blessing in all this. It is something that she and I get to do as a couple and we really enjoy it. Beverly and I now are in our second year of leading worship in home bible studies and also playing and singing for two children’s Sunday School classes! We frequently use your lessons for “This Little Light Of Mine” and “He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands”. The kids love it.
One more thing I have to share with you. Beverly and I really liked your song “Friends Of The Heart” on your video. After listening to the CD and watching the video a bit more, I sat down and worked out some chords for it. We played it for David Rios and his wife one night and they insisted we play it at the church’s couples luncheon. We were a little nervous about it, but did real well. It went over so well that the leaders of the couples ministry decided to name the couples ministry “Friends Of The Heart”. I hope you don’t mind. I think it’s quite a compliment to your song.
Beverly and I also are working on a couple of other songs from your CD – “Holy Lord” and “Worthy Of All Praise”. I believe these will be good songs for the home bible study worship. We hope you do another CD soon. We really like your songs.