It's been 15 years since Rich Mullins passed away. I've been seeing it all over Facebook: tributes, old recordings, and such. This morning I played the 2 albums that I had on my iPod while I worked. I found myself questioning why I only had 2 albums on my iPod when I knew that I had more of his albums at home in my collection. (Yes, I still have an extensive CD collection. So sue me.) I realized that part of the reason was because I haven't listened to very much Rich Mullins since I got my iPod in 2007.
Why in the world would I not really listen to much Rich Mullins for 5 years? Good question. In reality, it has been more like 6 years. I hadn't even realized that I had done it until today. My ex-boyfriend was a huge fan of Rich Mullins [And "fan" is really an understatement] and when I broke off our almost 4-year long distance relationship in 2006, I apparently broke off my love for Rich Mullins music as well. It got me thinking; what else have I let go by the wayside since then? The best way I could think to describe it was like it was the opposite of Julia Roberts' character Maggie in "Runaway Bride." Maggie only ate the same kind of eggs as the man that she was with, never knowing what she actually liked because she was trying to be like him. I guess I felt like I couldn't like Rich anymore because that was his thing. The thing is that I liked Rich long before I even met him. I can't even count how many times I listened to "Hold Me, Jesus" in college. In fact, he entire "A Liturgy, A Legacy, & A Ragamuffin Band" album was in constant rotation in the room that Tracy Lee and I shared my freshman & sophomore year. I even worked at a Ragamuffins concert in the Spring of '99 in St. Louis with our CCM Seminar class. His music is such a part of my history. How could I leave that on the sidelines for 6 years?
I'm sitting here this evening listening to the "Jesus Demos" and wishing that I had never stopped listening to this man sing stories about our Lord. There are so many things to learn from the stories and the songs. Rich got it. He understood, at least in part, how this life was meant to be lived. He understood how to be a child of God and be ok with being a "child." I feel like I have to have it all together. I've lost that child-like wonder that brings me close to Him. I need to revisit the things that I've put on the sidelines. The books that I gave away, the music that has just been sitting up on the shelf. I'm not controlled by the past or the things that are in it. I am a child of God. I am loved by Him not because the things that I have or haven't done in the past, but because I was drawn to Him and put my faith in Him.
This is a really hard thing for me to write about. I don't like to talk about that part of my life. It seems like another lifetime ago. It is part of me, though, and the Lord brought me through it. I can't regret what happened. It is part of my story, like it or not. I am still His beloved child. I need to remember that. Maybe this is just what I needed.
"I will never doubt His promise though I doubt my heart - I doubt my eyes
My Deliverer is coming - My Deliverer is standing by"
~"My Deliverer" The Jesus Record (Rich Mullins/Mitch McVicker)