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A defining moment ...
















One of the defining moments during my time in New Mexico this past July was during the taking of this picture. 

I had just finished the Saturday evening Back-Country Protestant Chapel service at Cimarroncito Camp at Philmont.  On the porch of the staff cabin were several hummingbird feeders, which were actively being circled about by at least a dozen different hummingbirds.

One of the staff members advised me to put my finger up to one of the feeders, and then told me to "stay really still."

After a couple of moments, this little female hummingbird came to rest on my finger, and began to feed without hint of any threat.  She stayed there for about a minute . . .  perhaps one of the longest minutes of my life.

Awesome.

The finger the hummingbird was sitting on was the pointy finger of my right hand.  It's the finger I use to point at people, things, the line on a map, etc.

When people ask me for directions, I usually point with this finger.

When someone isn't paying a attention (and should be), I sometimes point with this finger.

When I am making a point in a meeting or discussion with others, and I am saying something I believe to be important, I will tap or "thunk" the table with this finger (the proverbial "driving home the point" gesture).

And, when I serve others . . . this finger comes to play as well . . . for it is on my dominant hand, my right hand . . . the hand I extend to others.

This Sunday I am going to be preaching at the downtown campus at FUMC-Grapevine.  We are in the middle of a sermon series titled, "Confessions from the Pastors."  My confessions will be that for many years I thought the world revolved around me.

That all changed the day I came to realize that God is for EVERYONE and EVERYTHING.  On that day, I began looking at others not as different from me . . . but as my brothers and sisters, the children of a loving God.   On that day, I began to see that my narrow and selfish focus on my needs was blinding me to the needs of others that I could do something about.  On that day was born the "servant spirit" I try to live with on a daily basis.

I hope in the process . . . that the finger I pointed at others, as a way to declare how they were different, and how I was better . . . has become part of the hand that serves others as often as possible.

During the taking of the picture above, I came to understand that I was actually serving a little female hummingbird.  The tenderness of the moment struck my heart and soul deeply.  I'm 6'6" tall, and weigh in the 280's.   I hope you can imagine in your mind the picture . . .

A really big guy . . . serving a tiny little hummingbird.

A very humbling experience.  I hope I am man enough, as a person of faith and as a pastor, to take the time to learn the lesson I had the opportunity to learn that day.

God's grace still amazes me . . . ><>

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Would you life to share share about your favorite musical instrument?

What is your favorite guitar or other musical instrument?  Please let me know.  I'd like to interview you about your relationship with your favorite instrument.

I am interested in talking with, and getting to know, everyday people who make music.  That's the kind of person I am.  I'm an everyday kind of guy, and I love to sing and play guitar for everyday people. 

Although I have too many guitars, several ukes, a couple of old banjo's, a bunch of harmonicas and several Native American flutes, I am interested in stories about other instruments as well.  I have it in my mind that this blog will probably feature more stories about guitars and singer-songwriters.  However, I am open to stories about people and their love for other instruments.  So, if you play the accordion, piano, pennywhistle, drums . . . or can crack your knuckles in time to music . . . I want to hear your story.

All inquiries from interested, or from the curious as well, can be sent to revrickmang@gm…