The Joey Chronicles – Path to Freedom / “Doing Right Things With The Right People”
When Pastor John was growing up he had an imaginary friend named Joey.
These are growing up stories told from Joey’s point of view!
When Joey was seven years old something happened that changed his life.
He had no idea it would be important, but it was.
“Joey, I want you to come with me today to Multnomah because there is someone I want you to meet.”
“But Mom, that’s a college with old people. I’ll be bored. What will I do while you teach?”
“I’m not teaching today, but I want you to meet one of the teachers because I want you to start taking piano lessons from him.”
Joey stood there thinking.
“Does this mean I have to practice?”
“Will I have to play in front of other people?"
“Could we do it next week? Steve and Ron want to play football.”
So off they went to Multnomah where Joey met Dr. Congdon for the first time. Dr. Congdon’s office was memorable because it sat in a white building by itself on campus near the park next door. Joey was amazed by the wall covered with books as he sat at the piano for the first time.
He liked Dr. Congdon. He wasn’t too boring for an old guy. When Joey learned that he had 400 children of his own he understood why. At least it seemed like 400. When Joey would visit Dr. Congdon’s house he could never tell for sure. There were least ten or eleven new playmates as he waited for his lesson.
Every week Joey would drive with Dad or Mom to Multnomah for his lesson. He would go in the square white building with all the books, take out his music, and learn from Dr. Congdon. Twice a year Joey would go with a bunch of other frightened piano students to a big old church and play in a recital for people he didn’t know.
He began to make friends with other boys and girls who played the piano and sang. He even began to play the violin after a couple of years in the elementary school orchestra. It made such a horrible noise that his dog Happy would hide under bed until he put it away.
Joey didn’t care. It was music. And he loved music.
He would practice the piano for thirty minutes in the morning and thirty minutes at night. He still played football and baseball and rode bikes and had fun but he spent even more time with his musical friends.
Steve and Ron, his neighborhood buddies, would always seem bored and just hanging around. But Joey didn’t have time to be bored.
Practicing the piano and playing for other people could be hard work. But Joey's Dad always stopped to get him a Sugar Daddy to eat on the long drive for piano lessons. The caramel sucker would last forever and made the whole trip worthwhile.
Something happened when Joey was 7 that changed his life even though he didn’t know it at the time.
His parents pointed him towards music and friends and teachers that would point him in good directions all his school days. He just didn’t have time to get in trouble.
Well, that’s not totally true. But he never got in trouble the way many of his friends did. And he grew up loving Jesus more because of his love for music.
Joey’s Dad and Mom were a lot smarter than Joey realized. They knew that most of Joey’s music friends would encourage him to use his music to love and serve Jesus and he would be much happier growing up.
Psalm 1:1-3 says;
“Blessed (that means happy) is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers,
2 but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
3 That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither--
whatever they do prospers.”
Jesus wants us to spend time doing right things with the right people just like Joey’s Dad and Mom did.
Because Jesus wants us to be happy and successful in everything we do as we learn to love Him more.