Today I’d like to give credit and thanks to the music teachers of his world. In particular, I want to recognize and thank Tim Olsen, an accomplished and versatile guitarist who has given guitar lessons to all eight of my children. Next month is the first September in around 18 years that Tim won't be teaching at least one of the members of the Park family. We are getting to the end of the line! (Well, not really. Our youngest is only 14).
Because of Tim's skill as an instructor and mentor, he has helped launch thousands of people into the joy of guitar playing. All eight of my kids have played in worship teams with me. Tim’s hard work is a big reason my kids have done well. Most of them are above average guitar players and have done a lot of performing. Five of my boys have also transferred their guitar experience to the bass guitar, which has given them another way of serving on worship teams.
Behind the scenes of any stage or platform, the week-by-week, year-by-year work of their music teachers is a big reason we can play music publicly and skillfully. A local piano teacher named Dennis Enns is another example of a high quality music teacher - Dennis has taught piano to at least three of our kids.
Tim has a gift of lifting up and encouraging his students, so essential for succeeding as a teacher. I think his kindness and affirmation is one main reasons that three of my kids are now teaching music, either part time or full time.
Just yesterday, a young man named Mike was playing with me on the worship team in Chilliwack, BC. I found out that my son, Zachary, gave him voice lessons. Mike said that his Thursday afternoon voice lesson with Zac were the best part of his week! In those lessons, Zac pulled out of Mike the latent potential that was ready to be developed. Mike said he never envisioned himself as a lead vocalist. Zac helped him to see that his voice was a unique gift. According to Mike, MANY voice students at his school moved up a few skill levels because of Zac's influence. As a result, Mike is now beginning to lead worship in his local church.
Maybe you don't work as a music teacher, but you teach your kids. My wife has championed our kids' education, not just in music, but in learning to worship the Lord. All of us can influence others in some way. It is done with simple words of encouragement and passing on our skills by playing music with people, chatting with them, answering their questions and passing along our skills.