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Following the Graph
by Darrell Frizzel

  LIVING ON A PRAYER . . . .


     As we travel across the country we get to see all sorts of services, churches and singings in 
general. It’s often difficult to determine how any service or concert setting you attend will work 
out. It’s even harder to predict how Spiritual the service will or will not be. If only there was 
a way to predict the type of service you were about to attend, then you’d have something.

     Many years ago we noticed a small crack that appeared in the side window of the bus. 
Not thinking much of it, we continued on, fulfilling our bookings and traveling for the Lord. 
As one might expect, some of the services were great, some fine, others lacking. One day 
someone made the observation as the crack in the window began to grow that it looked like 
a graph on a chart. 

    It had started in the bottom right corner of the window and had begun to climb in a zagging 
pattern up and to the left. We began to notice however, that when the crack was going up, we 
would have truly wonderful services. If the crack was going straight across, the service was 
standard in nature. Likewise, when the crack began to go downward, the service was less than 
desirable. It actually did seem to predict the Spirituality of the services! Did we finally discover 
that elusive service predictor? It got the point that it was becoming so accurate, that it 
became a running joke to “consult the crack” when arriving at any given booking to see what 
kind of service we should expect.

     One particular weekend we had booked a difficult schedule, spreading ourselves entirely 
too thin trying to fulfill three singing dates in three days. Starting on a Friday night we had 
been performing nonstop and had finally approached the last service of the weekend. It was 
a Sunday evening and with five shows behind us, needless to say we were exhausted. In fact, 
we were not only tired of traveling; we were tired of each other and being on the road in 
general. We had just finished a two and a half hour drive to arrive at this last location. When 
we pulled up …our jaws dropped. The church was on a hill just off the main road and there 
was no way to get our bus up to the building. In fact, there was no drive leading to the church 
door at all. Parking was across the road where members and visitors would cross the road, 
walk up a long set of steps built within a rock retaining wall, proceed up a sidewalk to a second 
set of smaller steps leading into the church itself. Dragging and glazed, we made our way through 
these obstacles and up to the church doors, only to find them locked and with no one around. 
What’s this? Because of our travel time, we were running behind and the service to was to begin 
within an hour. Shouldn’t someone be here by now? Could it be that we were at the wrong place? 
Was there a way around this after all?

     Back then, the group was larger and younger so we shouldn’t have been so grumpy about it, but the mere thought of lugging all our equipment across that road, up those rock steps in the wall, up the sidewalk and up the church steps, and then to set it all up was more than we could stand the thought of. Especially after the run we had already had this particular weekend. Notice the key word in all this was “up!” Everything was uphill to load in. Not to men-tion the fact that back then, we had much, MUCH more equipment and it was built (as everything was back then) bigger and heavier than anything you see today. With a three-hour trip home ahead of us, talk began to turn toward getting back on the bus and heading home. Almost everyone was in agreement, we could be most of the way home by the time the service was over and no one would even know we were there. There were nine of us then, so it was easy when an idea started to gain traction, to rally the troops and have everyone on board in a very short period of time. Especially when you are as tired as we were then. But there was one or two of the guys who resisted the temptation to go home to bed, and they reminded everyone of the obligation we had as servants of God and to the church who was expecting us. Someone in turn noted that the crack in the window was pointing straight up which added some much needed hope. With all these factors in mind, we decided to suck it up, start unloading and begin the daunting task of dragging all our gear through the labyrinth of obstacles that awaited us.

     And the rest of the story will be continued next month.  So 'til then, be blessed.


Waymasters


 

 

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