Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Craig Morgan That's What I Love About Sunday

A couple of weeks ago I got to go with my wife to see Craig Morgan in concert at the Wichita River Festival. In the past I have been very disappointed in this festival but this year they had some great entertainment and I knew after reading the lineup that if I only went to one evening of the festival it would be to see Craig Morgan.

Craig Morgan has had a number of hit songs and none no bigger really than the song, That’s What I Love About Sunday. It is the fifth song featured on the DVD Three Wooden Crosses 11 Inspirational Videos From Today’s Top Country Artists. I will temporarily be skipping over the fourth song of that series, Jo Dee Messina’s Because You Love Me. I will have to download that video if obtaining permission to do so as it presently don’t exist on YouTube.

There are a lot of things I could say about the concert with Craig Morgan. I’ll be honest, from the outset I was skeptical that he would be outspoken about his faith. I knew he was a person of faith as he speaks about it quite often in the songs he has recorded. I was pleasantly surprised though when this Country Megastar didn’t only share some of his faith, but was outspoken in a non apologetic way about his relationship with Jesus Christ. Thousands upon thousands of persons in attendance heard from a man who loved to have a good time, but also placed his faith and his family in their proper places of priority. Amidst all of the cigarette smoke, beer drinking, and partying, we were having church.

I was waiting for Craig Morgan to perform the song that is the feature of today’s Three Wooden Crosses songs. I should have known better but I was pleasantly shocked and surprised when his band started off with a rendition of Amazing Grace prior to breaking into his mega hit That’s What I Like About Sunday. It wasn’t long before people holding their 22 oz glass of beer was swaying to the music singing along. I couldn’t help but wonder, if the church was as described in the song today, if many of these people might reconsider their own willingness to give faith another chance, or possibly even a chance for the first time.

I love this song for a variety of reasons, even though I didn’t grow up so much in church; I was partially raised in a home where church was critically important. On occasion I would go to church with my grandparents and learned to appreciate some of the things associated with this Sunday event and even church. It wasn’t just a time for church, it was a time about family, love, and relationship which I largely enjoyed. I would enjoy some of the times I visited the Greenwood Baptist Church in Johnson City where my grandparents attended, I would even enjoy some of the time there, but the real joy came from being at home after church, having a great meal, having a game of football or whatever sport was in season, and then falling asleep in front of the television from being tired and full, full from the great meal my grandmother always prepared. I can still smell and taste those meals of fresh green beans, macaroni and cheese, meat loaf or fried chicken, homemade biscuits with gravy, and on occasion one of my grandmother’s favorites, tomato pudding. She always had a dessert whether a homemade spice cake or freshly cooked from scratch banana pudding, I miss those days.

I never realized it until it was much too late, but the church experience, the visitations, the meals were all a part of what made Sunday’s special. I look back on those days and to be honest, I miss them, especially now that I am a Christian and the church part should and could mean so much more than it does. I loved the days when we always had company at my grandmas’ house, usually someone from church and sometimes a visitor. There were days when you could do that. I guess you still could but truth is we don’t. Church now is a place we go, and then as soon as it is done most folks go to their favorite restaurant. As a result we end up not building relationships, and more importantly, building memories. Even as one who wasn’t a Christian at the time, I can’t help but tell you I miss those days.

This is one of the things I love about this Craig Morgan song, it reminds us of what we used to have, of what Sunday’s used to be all about for some families. I believe it reminds us of what Sunday’s should still be. We can think of churches where Sunday is an event that you prepare for. You get the clothes ready the night before, you start the meal as a celebration of what has just occurred the night before, even getting up early on Sunday morning prior to going to church. I can still see my grandmother having it down to a perfect science. Lunch was always served within an hour after church and we all looked forward to it. I wish we still had the days where guests and other church members were invited to each others home to have a good meal, sit down, maybe on the front porch swing and visit a spell. Yea, those relationships those moments are worth remembering.

That is my little visit down the memory highway, check out the lyrics to the song, and then maybe share some of the memories of what church used to be like to you. Maybe of a meal at Grandmas’, maybe share a few things of how we can get that time back, a time where faith meant something, and friends were people you spent time with and cared about, not just someone you saw once a week at a Sunday morning service. Let’s talks about what we can do so we can love Sunday again.

Now check out the video, I love this one, if you don’t see a photo of the video, just click on the link, otherwise, click on the video to enjoy That’s What I Love About Sunday.

Lyrics to That’s What I Like About Sunday

Raymond's in his Sunday best,
He's usually up to his chest in oil an' grease.
There's the Martin's walkin' in,
With that mean little freckle-faced kid,
Who broke a window last week.
Sweet Miss Betty likes to sing off key in the pew behind me.

That's what I love about Sunday:
Sing along as the choir sways;
Every verse of Amazin' Grace,
An' then we shake the Preacher's hand.
Go home, into your blue jeans;
Have some chicken an' some baked beans.
Pick a back yard football team,
Nothin' much of anything:
That's what I love about Sunday.

I stroll to the end of the drive,
Pick up the Sunday Times, grab my coffee cup.
It looks like Sally an' Ron, finally tied the knot,
Well, it's about time.
It's 35 cents off a ground round,
Baby. cut that coupon out!

That's what I love about Sunday:
Cat-napping on the porch swing;
You curled up next to me,
The smell of jasmine wakes us up.
Take a walk down a back road,
Tackle box and a cane pole;
Carve our names in that white oak,
An' steal a kiss as the sun fades,
That's what I love about Sunday,
Oh, yeah.

Ooh, new believers gettin' baptized,
Momma's hands raised up high,
Havin' a Hallelujah good time
A smile on everybody's face.
That's what I love about Sunday,
Oh, yeah.

That's what I love about Sunday,
Oh, yeah.

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