Friday, April 22, 2005

No Stairway to Heaven

Some of you know I love to play guitar. It's a great relaxer and gives me another creative outlet. If I was any good at all at it, that would be a huge plus, but I'm approaching mediocrity at a snail's pace.

The other night, I was trying to learn the acoustic part to a Led Zeppelin song, "Stairway to Heaven." I had stumbled across the music and tabs to it and so started trying to learn to play it. Never having been a big Zeppelin fan when they were big and I was young, now I really have begun to appreciate their music more, and in particular, "Stairway." So I was fumbling around, making noise.

My son Sean, an accomplished and self-taught guitarist, walked in behind me. When he heard what I was trying to do, he laughed and said "what are you trying to do, get ready to go to the guitar store?"

Let me explain what he meant.

One of the most common songs people play at a guitar store, when trying to impress everyone with how well they play is, you guessed it, "Stairway to Heaven." It has so become so bad that Sean stated some guitar shops put signs up saying "No Stairway to Heaven."

I guess everyone gets tired of seeing people try to be something they are not.

The Bible has a lot to say about people who fake it, but one of my favorite verses perhaps says it best.

9Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. 10Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle. Romans 12 - The Message

When we "clean up our act" around some people, when we "watch what we say" if the pastors around, when we have one set of ethics for business and another for church...

We are faking it.

If we are to love from the center of who we are, Jesus has to own our heart. He has to be our treasure. We cannot be Christ-followers any other way. There are no short-cuts, no "stairways" to heaven. It takes loving Christ more than yourself, and it takes doing that every day.

The good news? Stay after it - after Him! Over time, as you continue your journey with Christ, you'll look back one day and find you've made progress. There'll be more of Christ and less of you.

Gotta run, Purple Haze is next on my list of songs to learn. :)



This devotional is written by David Wilson, pastor of New Hope Baptist church in Valparaiso, FL. If you find you have received this via a forward and would like to receive it regularly, or find you no longer wish to receive it, drop me an email at and I'll make the change to the list. If you'd like to know more about New Hope, visit our website at . May God bless you.

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