Archives For Michael W. Smith

Ever since Michael W. Smith’s 1984 sophomore project, Michael W. Smith 2 (all the creativity was apparently used up in the songs, there was none left to title the album), I wanted to make music.

It was undoubtedly the argyles.

If music could get you a perm like that, I was all in. Sign me up! When do we start making records?

Fast forward a decade. My friend (and now CityCom co-pastor) Nathan LaGrange and I found ourselves with something fascinating.

A song.

One song.

An OK song (honestly, pretty mediocre).

We were on staff together at a large church, and one day our creativity got the best of us. So we took our passion for God and music and decided to do something with it.  Nothing life changing (at least we thought at the time).  Just a few lyrics and a simple melody line.

But that one song gave us the confidence to write a few more. And those songs helped us convince our pastor the church should do it’s first live recording.  And that recording inspired a second project.  Which built momentum for a third.  Then a fourth.

And a catalog of 70 songs later, I realized my old argyle-imprinted dream of making records had just kind of happened when I wasn’t looking.  Seven times over.

All because we wrote that first song.

I meet so many people with big dreams (heck, I still have some of my own).  But the distance between where you stand today and what you imagine for the future is a huge chasm that swallows your inertia.  Too many big reasons why you can’t. And they short circuit the little reasons why you can.

What’s your “first song?” You probably just need to go write it.

This weekend, we (and when I say we, I mostly mean my wife and sister inlaw) started helping my parents prep for their first move in 32 years. We stumbled across some fascinating stuff tucked in dark closets and old desk drawers.

Stuff that belonged to me.

Ticket stubs from Michael W. Smith concerts almost two decades old.  A tic-tac box autographed by Toby Mac (what can I say, we single handed-ly kept CCM in business during the early 90’s).  Senior pictures that look a little bit like two people I know (I heard the camera adds 10 inches to the top of your head, I don’t know).

Memorabilia.  Keepsakes.

Our lives are full of memorabilia. Some trigger beautiful memories.  Some conjure up nightmares.  Some we can’t bear to throw away.  Others we’d like to incinerate (hairspray is flammable…ask my wife).

Good or bad, it’s stuff we hold onto.

Siphoning through all this old memorabilia reminded me of something disturbing Jesus said:

If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.” (Luke 9:34 NLT)

Not all “memorabilia” fills old jewelry boxes or long-forgotten bureau drawers. What am I hanging onto in my life that’s keeping me from having real life?