Sing out with joy for the brave little boy who was God, but he made himself nothing.

Last night we went to see Andrew Peterson and friends perform the Behold the Lamb of God concert at Westover. This was our fourth time seeing the concert. Once many many years ago, long before the CD was out, we saw it in Reidsville at a tiny church. I have sometimes wondered if that was a figment of my imagination, but last night Kendra confirmed that, yes, it happened, because she was there, too. Some of the Siler’s Bald people played that concert, just to let you know how long ago it was. The Stone Age. And we have seen it twice at the Ryman, and now we got to see it approximately two minutes from our house. (Between this concert and the Over the Rhine concert that was at Guilford College, we are getting really spoiled.)

I think the first time at the Ryman is still my favorite, but last night was totally awesome. Let me list some of the many awesome things.

1. This one is both awesome and awkward. I felt like approximately half of the people that I know or used to know in Greensboro were at the concert. Worlds! Colliding! It was fun and overwhelming to see so many familiar faces. I am deeply awkward in social situations, so it was a little bit much for me and took until lunchtime today for me to calm down. But I am feeling all right now. I enjoyed seeing and spending a little time with people I usually only get to catch up with online these days (or people who usually just catch up with me online, like Karen). It is a gift to know people for as long as I had known some of the other attendees, to have seen them change and grow over the years. Hopefully they can say the same for me. Hello, everyone! Good to see you! Can we maybe organize seeing each other in smaller groups next time so that I can deal a little better? hehe.

2. Theresa! I love my friend Theresa. She makes me so happy. And she came to the concert because of her great and obsessive love of Bebo Norman. And also the Begats song. We had such excellent seats, right in front of Bebo, that I bet she was still grinning ear to ear today. Plus, Andy Gullahorn played “More of a Man” and it mentions Gilmore Girls. (I used to have an entire section of this blog devoted to discussing Gilmore Girls with Theresa. Those were good times.) It was as if the whole evening was orchestrated for Theresa’s benefit. Which is fitting because her birthday was over the weekend. Happy Birthday Week, Theresa! I feel so blessed to have a friend like Theresa. Just being around her makes me feel more alive. Even though we disagree on that whole Edward Cullen thing. (I do not know how to handle our first recorded disagreement in the history of our friendship. And it’s over Edward Cullen, of all things. Edward Cullen. Who is creepy.)

3. Alisa! Alisa went to great lengths to score our group some excellent seats. We were on the front row! Right in front of Bebo! He still looks like Edward Norton.

4. Bebo! Apparently I love Bebo, because I sure have been talking about him a lot. He played “Great Light of the World,” which is one of those songs I kind of feel like I am supposed to think is cheesy and lame, but I just can’t help but love it. Now I want Bebo on my iPod. I think I am going to make a Square Pegs (+ Bebo) playlist because of all the awesome music last night. I got kind of irritated with his CCM turn, but I was reminded last night how much I love his older stuff.

(Maybe I still need to calm down a little bit.)

5. The music. Behold the Lamb of God is my most favorite Christmas CD. I just wish it was longer. That was my one complaint about the show at the Ryman, especially the second time we saw it there. I drove 8 hours to watch them play the CD, which is kind of short. This time, though, it seemed a little bit longer. Both Mike and I felt that way – perhaps it was because the people who were there got to play two songs in the round instead of just one. And also there was only a two-minute drive home. I love many different parts, but one of my favorites is at the end: “Sing out with joy for the brave little boy who was God, but he made himself nothing!” On Sunday, when we lit the third Advent candle and talked about joy, I thought that, frankly, I was not really ready to talk about joy. Similarly, Tuesday was full of frustrating interactions and bad transitions. I am thankful for music that reminds me of the story of God’s love, the source of that joy.

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