Nashville - Day 14

Apparently, the new tourist trend in Nashville is to visit town looking for characters of the hit show, "Nashville." Well, today, we hit the trend when we saw Charles Esten - aka Deacon Claybourne! We weren't able to speak to him, but we definitely had our geeky do-you-see-who-I'm-seeing moment.

It was so lovely to attend Redeemer again this morning, to be with this wonderful congregation and see even more friends. When we came to the 'prayers of the people' section of the service, there's a place where people can add their personal petitions, either silently or aloud. As people lifted their prayers this morning, I had a flashback to 5 years ago, when we attended Redeemer on the first Sunday following our accident. When we came to this point in the service, I lifted my prayer, "I'm thankful I'm alive, and I'm thankful Gerald is alive." As this memory swept over me, I was reminded of that deep, visceral feeling of gratitude to simply be alive. We say it all the time, "We should just be thankful we're alive and healthy," but it never rings true until we walk the edge of death. This morning, I silently lifted that prayer again. I added prayers of thanksgiving for our family and our Redeemer congregation that supported us in that time, and I gave thanks for where we are today.

After the service, Jenna and our new friend, Heather, joined us for a classic treat: Sunday homestyle chicken at Cracker Barrel! The ability to see friends more than once on this trip has been an enormous blessing. We've been able to get past the 'catching up' conversations and move onto actually just hanging out and creating new memories.

Jenna was anxious to hear our recording, so after lunch we all sat in her car to listen to the CD. There are no vocals yet, so Jenna and Heather sat in the front, while Gerald and I sang the vocals from the back seat. To sing the songs to the new tracks in that intimate setting was incredibly moving. Seeing Jenna and Heather's reactions gave us new inspiration in the power of the songs, and the importance of creating a beautiful CD. We've also decided that "car concerts" should become the next big thing...

Tomorrow, the adventure continues with a visit to Memphis!

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