Last week my friend Janna invited me to attend an Andrew Peterson concert on Friday. I have a confession: I only knew his name because I've heard her speak it several times. I'd never "googled" him (if I had, then the 600,000 results might have surprised me) or searched for his music on YouTube (which would have yielded 798 results).
So, I made my way to Lifeway to purchase one of his CDs - Resurrection Letters, Volume II - so I could "prepare," so to speak, for the show.
As soon as I popped it into my CD player, I recognized tracks one ("All Things New") and four ("Invisible God") from radio play. I discovered that each song is a beautiful blend of storytelling, music, and worship. Lyrics flow like poetry, delivered with the strum of a guitar. Tracks two ("Hosanna") and ten ("I've Got News") captured me and found themselves on "repeat" during my drive.
Part of our evening on Friday included dinner with Andrew prior to the show, a lovely invitation he extended to Janna, a new contributor to his Web site The Rabbit Room. As we waited for his soundcheck to end, I perused the product table and realized the scope of Andrew's talent: eight albums, two novels, and a children's book. I confess I was surprised (and a bit intimidated) to find myself sitting at the dinner table with him, Janna, two six-year-olds, and a three-year-old.
However, Andrew proved to be warm and engaging. Conversation flowed freely, and he showed interest in both of us, our lives, and our stories. I felt like I was sharing a meal with a friend and was deeply grateful for his welcome. At the end of our meal, we said our goodbyes and found our seats in the sanctuary. Moments later, he walked to the stage. He engages with his audience just as he does with two new friends over the dinner table - with authenticity and generosity. It was a beautiful show and a real treat. I thank him for his kindness.