“REED” This




Yesterday I had the opportunity to play my trombone in a brass quintet for the July 4th Parade on Sea Island. This was the first time for me to play in this particular parade, so I arrived a little early to make sure I was where I needed to be and ready to play. As all the participants were gathering to get into position, I noticed two other music groups were in the parade. I didn’t hear them during the parade, as there was some distance between the three music groups, but I did enjoy hearing a pipe and drum band, and a drum corps as they were warming up. Another first for me was playing my horn while riding on the back of a flatbed truck. I had played on the back of a truck while it was sitting still, but never while moving. Thankfully, there were sides that came up about a foot so I didn’t have to worry about my chair sliding off. We waited a good while before everyone was in order, fortunately in some shade, and then we were off. As we neared the area where the parade formally started, I noticed people along the sides of the route using water guns to spray those who were in the parade. I didn’t expect that. As I made comment on this I was told they usually didn’t spray the musicians. Well, we made it to the starting point and began to play. I enjoyed playing with the group and as long as I kept my foot on my music stand, it stayed put and everything was working well. I could hear the people around us and see them a little in my peripheral, but my focus was mainly on the music. As we neared the end, we were playing a piece I had not played before. Then, I realized I had the solo. I started playing it and it was going well when all of a sudden, I felt cold water hitting my back and shoulder and then some shot directly into my right ear. I’d been hit! Thankfully, I kept playing and didn’t miss a note of the solo and finished the song. I didn’t mind the cool water so much as I was hot, but the shot into my ear hurt some and is still bothering me a bit. I can hear fine, but I have a dull ache every so often.


The question that comes to my mind is why? Why did someone think it was a good idea to spray people with water as they went by in a parade? And why did other people join in and think it was a good idea as well? I’ve never been to any other parade where this is done, or even thought that it would be something to do at a parade. That entire water guns at a parade experience was unexpected.


Unexpected things happen all around us. We flip a switch and a light does not come on. We turn a faucet and the water doesn’t run. We turn the ignition key and the motor doesn’t start. All of these are unexpected. You go on vacation and run into someone from your hometown. A friend you haven’t heard from in years calls you. You finish eating at a restaurant and learn that someone else has paid for your meal. Unexpected things happen all around us. There is one thing that will be unexpected for some, but we know it’s coming. Paul writes about it in 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6; “Now concerning how and when all this will happen, dear brothers and sisters, we don’t really need to write you. For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night. When people are saying, ‘Everything is peaceful and secure,’ then disaster will fall on them as suddenly as a pregnant woman’s labor pains begin. And there will be no escape. But you aren’t in the dark about these things, dear brothers and sisters, and you won’t be surprised when the day of the Lord comes like a thief. For you are all children of the light and of the day; we don’t belong to darkness and night. So be on your guard, not asleep like the others. Stay alert and be clearheaded.” We don’t know when it will happen so that time will be unexpected, but we know Jesus is coming soon. We need to be ready by knowing Jesus as our Savior and Lord so we can meet Him in the sky when He comes. And we need to be telling others about Jesus so they can know Him, too, and not be caught unexpectedly.


Bro. Paul Reed


Tuesday, July 5, 2022