I’m in Ireland for a few days exploring future programming possibilities for YouthCUE. Bright and early this morning, I got myself up for what looked like in my GPS a five-mile walking tour of this magnificent old city. First on my list were Christ Church and St. Patrick’s Cathedrals, both established in the 12th Century.
Striding briskly down the hallway of my hotel at 6:30am, I literally walked into a beautiful young flight attendant who was more suprised to bump into me … we hadn’t seen each other as she pulled her roller-luggage quickly into the hallway. Frankly, we frightened each other!
In our common journey to the elevator and down to the restaurant, we overcame our fears and I discovered that she is from the U.S., from Texas, from Houston, and formerly from San Antonio. Stone Oak in San Antonio, to be more precise. Her growing up home is located a mile and a half from where I live! Her little sister graduated from Churchill High School.
Also on the elevator was one of her United Airlines flight attendant colleagues, and she had a pristine violin case stacked carefully on top of her other luggage. When I asked about that, this flight attendant told me she played in a Christian youth orchestra growing up in Tampa, and she has decided to take it on her work trips to practice during her layovers. She plays in the orchestra at her church.
Disney has no corner on the market proclaiming that it’s a small world after all!
After sharing my business card with both of these new friends, the violinist came to me during breakfast to affirm the work of YouthCUE. She told me that I have no idea how impactful her Christian musical upbringing was to her: professionally, emotionally, musically, spiritually. She expressed assurance that the work of YouthCUE is shaping lives, building leaders, and changing the world for the better. She said she will visit our website. I encouraged her to take advantage of our free membership and to get online with us and tell us her story. We’d like to know more of her background and the passion she has developed for music and worship since her adolescence. Maybe, hopefully, she will tell us more about it.
And later in the morning, there were the visits to the Cathedrals. Wow, wow, and again I say, WOW! At St. Patrick’s, the organist was rehearsing and fixing his settings. Next door, the St. Patrick’s Cathedral Choir School, still going strong, was founded in 1432! And you thought YouthCUE had been in youth choir ministry a long time!
You’ll be hearing more about Ireland from Ireland (and about Scotland from Scotland) in the coming days. And somewhere down the line, you’ll be hearing about YouthCUE groups headed this way in our continuing quest to radically impact the lives of youth. As we do that, let us be reminded again that because of technology and a world of other advancements, this planet is growing smaller – yet getting immensely larger in terms of potential – with every passing day. It’s often a matter of making the most of life’s coincidental collisions and working to overcome our fears.
(Actually, although some things are admittedly random, I toned down my belief in coincidence many years ago. I believe, in God’s great economy of things, people who love God and follow God are often led to common points to encourage and affirm each other. I’ve seen it happen too many times to believe it is all pure chance.)
As my friend and pastor Garrett Vickrey sometimes says in his benedictions: the world is too dangerous for anything but love and too small for anything but truth.