The other night, the high school small group that I lead wanted to meet at one of the teen’s houses to play “Rock Band”. Not familiar with this game? Surely you jest. If you’re not kidding, click here. And hold on to your hat.
And as I was rockin’ the bass guitar, sitting (then standing) on the end of the bed, I started thinking.
With three other people also trying desperately to keep up with their own instructions on the screen, I found myself part of a beautiful (and loud) masterpiece of music.
Certainly I could launch into how the cacophony of sound we produced is likened to the preciousness of fellowship or spiritual community. It could be compared to how each of us, in our own way, strive to contribute our part in the song of life–or something like that. But instead of that, I’d rather go in a different direction.
I’d rather do some surmising, if I may. These students that I was rocking out with are my disciples, in a real sense. I am their pastor and “small group leader”, and so I am the one charged with their spiritual nurturing. The responsibility of their own growth rests squarely on their own shoulders, but I definitely feel the onus of modeling Jesus in front of them.
You may be asking, then what the heck I was doing participating in the make-believe rock concert in one of their bedrooms? How could I, as a small group leader, sanction such behavior? And not only sanction, but pick up a bass guitar and play my part with the likes of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Jimmy Eat World, Styx, or Joan Jett? Where is the spiritual value in any of that mess? It’s a fair question.
And I suppose the answer is found in the reality of the hyperstatic union. That is, that Jesus’ disciples saw him both walk on water as well as burp after a meal. They saw him raise the dead as well as take a nap. And so certainly it isn’t right to think that discipling happens only when we are somber, or stoic, straight-faced, or studious. Discipling happens at every turn. And believe me, that can be a blessing and a curse. Because I’m not only a small group leader, and a pastor, but I’m a human being as well. And as such, fallible. Really fallible.
But I suppose that even though I’m not on the level (yet) of Jesus’ perfection, I still have a life to offer as an example of one seeking to walk where He walks, to think what He thinks, to say what He says.
So, as I whaled on bass, I was mindful that connecting spiritually comes in lots of varieties. And that discipleship just might sometimes happen with my fist in the air.