When I was 14, I was on the worship team for our youth group. It wasn’t much at the time, just a few of us, and our youth pastor, Andrew, getting together going through some songs.
I can clearly remember one practice at the church. There were just three of us there, myself, another guy (Chris), and Andrew. We were going through a few songs, and there was this new one (at the time) that Andrew just loved. It was one of his favourites and he wanted us to try it out. We didn’t have any music for it, but he wanted to sing it so badly, so the three of us, chord by chord, tried to figure out what the music could be.
I remember vey distinctly the sense of accomplishment (and the huge grin on Andrew’s face) as we figured out the right chords. It was the first time I felt like I might actually be an ok piano player and competent enough to do worship. There was a instant bond of comraderie as the three of us plunked out the notes, getting them more and more right with every attempt. We started slowly, having to repeat the same word/phrase over and over, but eventually we got the verse and then the chorus down. Although it was just an ordinary afternoon practice, (one of many) with three people who actually weren’t that great to begin with on their instruments, it was a moment that actually was then, and still is frozen in my memory. I didn’t always know why. But I think today I do.
The song was “Knowing You (All I once held Dear)” by Graham Kendrick. I always think of Andrew when I hear this song, because of that day. Because of the excitement he had when we got it right. Because of his love for the song and what it stood for. Because of the way he lived his life, as if this song was his life anthem. Although on this earth, we can only know in part, today, Andrew knows in full.
February 13, 1971-November 3, 2008