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renew your Guts…

by | Oct 25, 2020 | Guts, renew, Van Halen

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The structure of these postings causes me to bounce around a lot. To be frank I don’t need an excuse to bounce around – that is a core competency so maybe I should replace renew with random 😉 And I am old enough to know that doesn’t work for others… and actually doesn’t for me either.  Anyway I am returning to the band with the kids from church, and they were good enough that they wanted to get out and “tour” a bit.. so we were over at a church in Waynesboro for another Youth Group.  From my own youth group in Tyler, and the work with the church in Herndon, I knew how to Roadie, so I volunteered to meet them and help set up. We were all ready to go and I asked about their setlist… and they looked at me like “what is a setlist?” 

With a group like Van Halen who people don’t think about in the context of “Faith”, I always wonder if I can come up with a track for Sunday.  As I was researching the band this week, I stumbled on this track, and thought – why do I not remember it?  Well – it is not on a normal release unless you count Greatest Hits.  But it could not be better for the day and the topic.  The boys had just finished yet another global tour, and were home trying to get well.  Sammy’s wife was pregnant and about to deliver their baby in Hawaii.  Alex was in a neck brace from years of abuse, and Eddie was walking with a cane because of a hip injury.  Seems like the perfect time to renew… 

… I have started reconnecting with friends and leaders across the country again. It feels like time to start assessing where we all really are. This week I had a couple of conversations with friends in person, some on Zoom including with an old friend from London, and others who are still in the throws of the “real” corporate world.  All are in varying states of exhaustion, with some on the upside of “…it is what it is, and I need to make this normal for me… “.  After an initial period of anger (like the screaming in the song), I realized that without structure, my “natural” nature would lead me to simply spiral. Yes, everything is blowing up… and in that change, I can let go of the things that were not working for me… and start to make room, tentatively, for the things I now want to pursue.  I actually said out loud something I have thought for years… 

… in swim lessons at the Y years ago, you would progress from minnow through the various fish.  The top was Whale… but one short was Shark… which I liked a lot better… so I “flunked” the test to move up… staying a Shark. The thing about Sharks is they die if they hold still… and that has been in my head for many years… if I pause…  It is why Sabbath/Sunday’s have always been a challenge for me.  Keep moving, keep doing.. and… what is the cost?  When the Global All Stop was issued… I fought it at first of course… and then slowly… realized this could be a gift… IF I could reframe it as such.  So – making it a challenge – that is very Shark like 😉  The trick is focusing back on Guts – what is it down there – really – honestly – that I want… and can I actually voice it?  Out loud?? And then… can I write it down and stick with it…including where I would “solo”, and when I would lay back, and when I would rest…

Van Halen’s producer called with a movie deal – Twister – ironic right and PERFECT for 2020 – that had a lot of money with it… and the band did this song.  It actually caused Sammy to leave the band because of the tensions it produced – the very last song with him.  With the church band, I asked for 2 pieces of poster board and we quickly wrote down the songs, the keys, the start, and the endings – something I learned from my Bluegrass band.  Knowing what is coming, and what your part is, keeps the band synced up, and frees each member to be creative, together. What are your Guts telling you now – that you need to put on a “setlist”. Making the future predictable is what the game now is… and even with all that is being thrown at us, like Twister – the movie AND the game… you CAN do it.  The lyrics are fantastic for renewal… and a good reminder of our need for Faith… and looking up like the picture.  We are all in fact reconnecting with the fact we are all, together, a band of … Humans Being. 

There is just enough Christ in me
To make me feel almost guilty
Is that why God made us breed
To make us see we’re Humans Being

You break this, I’ll break all that
You break my balls with all your crap
Spread your disease like lemmings breeding
That’s what makes us humans being

Shine on, shine on
Shine on, shine on

Some low life flat head scum infects
The sickness in his eyes reflects
You wonder why your life is screaming
Wonder why your Humans Being

Shine on, shine on
Shine on, shine on

Humans being
We’re just humans, humans being
That’s what makes us
Humans being


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