Union Ridge Church

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

by Reverend Dan on May 18, 2022
Last week I wrote about some memories that were triggered by a photo an old friend had posted. That old friend was more than just a friend, however. He was one of the first musicians I ever looked up to – an early musical role model, I guess. He was a few years older than me, and I knew him from growing up in the same church. He and the guys he played in the band with set the gold standard for all of us who followed. Thomas Gene, Wallace, Tom, and Mike – “Kilroy” – was THE band in our area. Others drifted in and out of the band (David, Henry, Lee), but these four were the original members and core of the group. All were gifted musicians, the band’s sound was always tight, and their set lists were classics. But more than anything, they were good guys, and they would let us “wanna be’s” (that would be me, Darryl and Dean) hang around. In fact, if you were in another band, being seen with them bought immediate street cred. They didn’t even care if we stopped by when they were rehearsing. And every once in a while, they would let us sit in and play a song with them. It was on those nights that we experienced nirvana. They were incredibly popular, and it seemed like they were always playing somewhere: dances, pool parties at the Rec Center, “Barnacle Bill’s”, and the “Reno Club.” (We won’t get into a discussion about the Reno Club. Let’s just say remember the scene in the Blue Brothers where there was chicken wire in front of the band?)

Role models seem to be harder and harder to come by these days. Maybe it’s the constant exposure of lives on social media, or maybe the world is just, in the words of my grandfather, “going to hell in a hand basket.” Either way, at a time when they are needed the most, role models are the hardest to find. A good role model can change your life. (I guess a bad one can too – that’s why you have to be careful choosing your friends.) A good role model gives you something to strive for. They set the bar and it gives you a goal to keep getting better and better.

Paul tells Titus to “show himself in all respects to be a model of good works.” There’s a good reason for that. People who look up to you are watching and emulating everything you do. When you think about it, it’s kind of a heavy load because the reality is, you really don’t have a choice of whether you want to be a role model or not. If someone is going to look up to you, it’s happening before you ever know it. Therefore, it may be a good idea to stop and think about who might be watching you and what they might be copying. It’ll make them – and you – better.

And to all the guys I mentioned … examples in a Christian devotional?! Us?! Hope you all are doing well.