Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Graham Kendrick preparations continue

I had my day in the desert with Graham Kendrick yesterday. It was a really nice time. I arrived as he was finishing up the first session with the students, and we had a coffee together and caught up a little. I got involved with the second session of classes (playing a little guitar) where Graham was teaching a technique he calls "Psalm Surfing".

Basically, you take a psalm, start to play a chord progression and improvise singing the words of the psalm over the top of the chords. The idea is to really wrap your heart around the words, let them sink in deep and allow God to speak to you. It's like meditation, worship, prayer and creative improv all wrapped up together, and you really feel that you are meeting with God. Many of the students had tears in their eyes as they sang out their worship in Arabic.

We stopped for lunch and I met the rest of the team who had arrived so far. Graham's Musical Director, Steve Thompson, is the Worship Director for a church in London, and he has brought his gospel choir along for the ride this year, including various family members, his Senior Pastor, and a couple of other staff members. They are joining Graham and the band in our worship services and the concert at MCC. Raoul, Graham's amazing trumpet and percussionist was also there. He brings an amazing Spiritual dynamic, and has endless wonderful stories.

After lunch, Graham and I spent a couple of hours, sitting on his balcony overlooking a lake and palm trees, chatting and talking over all the things that have been going on since he came last year, and working out a rough plan for the weekend. He played me three new songs to see if they felt suitable for this weekend, and, if the band can get a good arrangement going, we'll end up seeing the debut of some new material tomorrow at MCC.

Later that afternoon there was a big ceremony as many of the students were graduating from their classes, including the people I taught a few weeks ago. Graham led a couple of songs, Steve and the choir led a great worship set, and Raoul played a couple of pieces, singing and playing trumpet at the same time.

I got home at about 11:00pm after the long drive down the desert road, trying to avoid the speed bumps (difficult when you can't see them in the dark), the overloaded trucks wandering about their lanes, and the odd car with no lights at all, in the pitch black, doing 100kph (60mph)! It's just jazz, really.


Trent said...

We're excited for what God will bring this year with Graham and crew! Deeper levels of commitment for current believers and salvation for those that don't know the truth yet is the desire of all our hearts! Blessings Bro!

daddy said...

Jazz? JAZZ? Have you ever driven on the roads of Cairo? ... bla bla bla bla bla bla ... bla rant bla bla bla bla rant :-) Tobes XXxxxx