What I Have Learned From Ron Brown
Saxophonist and Music Arts Revival Movement (MARM) founder Ron Brown has taught me a lot—how to hear and trust God in everyday life and many other lessons about being a follower of Jesus. But he taught be something I’m sure he would be surprised to hear I learned: you have to have a drummer in the band who can “lay down a good groove.” Knowing I am not a musician (he was quite adamant about that, actually), I’m sure Ron never thought the drummer thing would stick with me. Let me tell you why it did.
First, it is a good analogy for me as a leader and a pastor. Part of my purpose in these roles is to “lay down a good groove” people can align with. This starts at home in my role as husband and father and moves out from there. The groove allows others to grow and function in their purpose in unity along with the rest of the body of Christ. If other players or soloists are not following the beat of the drummer, or even worse, following their own beat, the music can become confusing noise. As a leader and pastor, I’m looking for people who want to be in a band, not just have a solo career.
The second reason it stuck is that lots of people succeed as members of the band, while many others fail trying for a solo career. It’s not easy or safe out there by yourself. To explain the analogy, you need a church fellowship and you need to play with the groove laid down in that church. I have discovered that in Western Culture to resist and overcome the enemy you need to be part of the Body of Christ. Throughout the past fifteen or so years, I have spent a lot of energy working to build a strong church family at the church I pastor. I’ve discovered without that, people are slowly picked off by Satan and his schemes, but in a covenant church family, people learn a lifestyle that overcomes the enemy.
We can’t be alone. Listen for the groove.
Pasadena MARM Conference Sept. 20 – 22, 2013 https://www.facebook.com/groups/491537727604987/
I love this! It’s so true. I know there are so many times when life has gotten crazy, overwhelming or confusing and I’ve needed to listen for that drum beat, and adjust and get in the right rhythm. I’m grateful for the people in my life that ‘lay down a good grove’!
An interesting choice for your analogy. As a fellow non-musician I see drummers as mainly background – a key role, but a background one nonetheless. Your’s role often seems like the lead singer, but I know that much of a pastor’s role is much more background than I might imagine, at least if it is being done well.
I’m surprised that you didn’t referenced your favorite scripture in there about the “unforced rhythms of grace.” It seemed like such a natural fit, but maybe only superficially with the rhythm reference.
From this I can take to heart the message about creating the rhythm for my family as a husband and father. It is inglorious work, but my family is out of sync when I’m off beat. Fatherhood and leadership, at least in practice as a Christ-follower, is nothing like marching to the beat of your own drum.
Great observation of the scripture reference Jeremy. Didn’t think of that one.
The Message (MSG)
28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”