I'm preparing for Thursday break listening to Beirut's Gulag Orchestar - and dreaming of new worlds.
Thursday Break is our lunch time service for mainly older people - though it does attract a couple of local office workers. This term, we're doing a series on encouragement and I'm speaking this week on encouraging one another with talk of our eternal destiny. I'm using 1 Thessalonians 4:13-5:11 as my launch pad.
At the same time I'm listening to Zach condon's wonderful music. He records under the name Beirut and is a riotous mixture of indie sensibility and east european soundscapes - gypsy guitars, violins, trumpets, accordions, ukuleles and farfisa organs.
It set me thinking, no dreaming, of new worlds. When the Kingdom comes in all its fullness, will I be able to explore and interact with all the music of this world? When I hear an album like Gulag orchestar it makes me want to set off in search of its roots, the music that inspired it. I'm an indie pop and rock man but I love African, middle eastern and eastern european sounds. I listen to Tinariwen and Amadou & Mariam and ache with a longing to know about where this amazing music comes from. But I don't have time because I've people to see, sermons to write, projects to organise and lots of other things to do.
When Jesus returns and the world is renewed and all the glories of the nations are brought into the Holy City - as Isaiah saw it would - I hope I get the chance to explore it all. What a new world that will be. I'd also love to be able to play some of these strange instruments and jam with musicians of all cultures.
A flight of fancy? I hope not.