Liz Roberson

 
 

Blog

An Uncomfortable Encounter

[Repost from 2014]

Last year, while beginning the last trimester of my pregnancy, I scored a seat at a worship leader 'round table' with All Sons and Daughters. Don't ask me how...I received an email, I followed the link, I signed up. I went back to try to sign up for a few more spots if possible for our worship team at church and the message "This event is full" showed on my screen.

Did I seriously just score the very last spot? You know I tried again. And again. Yep. The very last spot.

(Me, about the time of the round table)

When I arrived at the event, it was fairly early so I grabbed a spot in the back of the room at one of five unoccupied tables. There were freebies and handouts at each chair, so I sat and began to read from a magazine.

A few minutes passed and then I had this feeling like my space was about to be invaded. Out of all of the empty tables in the room, a man chose the one I was sitting at to join. Perfect.

"Hey, how ya doin'?" He asked happily.

"Oh...good. You?" I glanced up and smiled in that keep-your-creeperness-away-from-me way.

He was wearing a trucker hat. You know...like Ashton Kutcher made 'fashionable'? And he had a sweet beard and black hipster glasses. No flannel, though. I went back to reading.

Just then, he started humming.

I swear, he was HUMMING. An 80's song. I started to consider my options. Do I risk making eye contact again and escape to another table with the lame excuse that I can't see the front of the room without my glasses? Do I use the pregnancy as an excuse to go 'use the bathroom'? Oh! I know...I'll fake labor!

"I've had this song stuck in my head all day." He was saying. "I can't remember the name. Some 80's song...what song do YOU have stuck in your head?" He asked me.

Before I could stop myself, I was answering him, "Sing of Your Glory by Bebo Norman." I glanced back down at the article I was reading.

"BEBO!" He exclaimed loudly and startled me. "I don't think I've heard that one. How does it go?"

Still looking down at my magazine, I sang a few bars from the chorus, "I'll sing of Your glory, now. Sing of Your glory, now. I'll sing of Your glory, now and forever."

"Hmm. Doesn't ring a bell. I love Bebo, though..." And he started telling a story about one of Bebo's concerts. A lady had joined our table at this point. An outgoing, chatty lady. I slipped back into my not-seen scene.

Something was weird about this guy. I couldn't put my finger on it. He seemed like he was somebody, you know? But I knew he wasn't in All Sons and Daughters, I knew that much. So who was he?

I pulled my phone out and Googled him. What did he say his name was? Tim Timmons.

Songs started coming up on my phone and I was able to stop the autoplay just barely in time. Geez.

So he was a singer. I guess he was touring with AS&D. I shuffled my papers and snuck a glance at him. The other lady was still talking. Then it hit me.

I JUST SANG FOR TIM TIMMONS.

My heart started pounding and my hands were sweaty. Crap. Crap. Crap.

More and more people were arriving so I just faded into the background even more. But wouldn't you know...Tim Timmons kept pulling me into the conversations. "What do you think about that, Liz?" or "Have y'all met Liz?" or "Oh, Liz was saying..."

Shhhhhhhhhhhh! Tim Timmons, you are blowing my cover! I'm invisssssssssssssible.

Soon, we were starting and AS&D called Tim Timmons to the front to share a bit. He talked about Jesus with crazy passion. I decided that I liked his kind of crazy. He came back to our table and they gave us questions to tackle together as a group.

The conversations quickly turned to things of a technical nature. Paid musicians vs. volunteer and such. And the quality of each. I was quiet during this discussion for a long time. Then Tim Timmons called me out again. "What do you think about all of this, Liz?"

Crap.

"Well...I'm just...I'm really thankful that I'm part of a church that is made up of volunteers. Their hearts are to make Jesus' name famous. We try our best to do it together in unity. And none of us are really rockstars on our own, but somehow together...we are able to facilitate very special moments between people and the Lord. I guess that's why I wanted to be here today. I wanted to experience some of that same unity with others in our city and hear about the things that God is doing in other churches, too."

I said more than this, I know. I just can't remember it all. Everyone was just kind of staring at me. The quiet one who all of a sudden enters into a monologue.

The conversation took a turn and there was a lot more positive things being thrown out there. I listened intently. Before I knew it...the event was coming to a close.

Part of me was disappointed because it felt like it had taken so long to get to the good part and now it was over. And I hadn't even gotten to talk extensively with anyone in AS&D. That dang Tim Timmons...

But the other part of me was relieved, to be honest.

Everyone left as quickly as they came and I was a little slower, partially because I was almost 7 months pregnant and partially because I am just slow. I like to walk slow at the grocery store. Sue me.

Tim Timmons came back over to the table as I was packing up. "Wow, you ARE pregnant, aren't you?" He laughed and told me about his wife and FOUR KIDS. He sat down next to me as I finished getting my things together.

"Do you mind if I say something?" He asked me. Seriously. I blinked. NOW he was going to be polite about invading my space?!?!

I looked at him questioningly. He began, "It seems to me that you apologize a lot. You should stop doing that." Confused, I furrowed my brows and literally almost apologized for apologizing.

Instead, I asked him, "What do you mean?"

"It's just...the group was discussing and when I called on you to talk, you had a lot of good things to say. A lot of TRUTH. A lot of things that the group needed to hear. You shouldn't apologize for that. Don't ever apologize for speaking truth."

I started to tear up. I explained to him that I have not always had success speaking the truth. I haven't always spoken well--in such a way that it would be received well. And I haven't always been received well even when I have spoken well.

He laughed. "That's the nature of it, though." He spoke so confidently. He encouraged me to speak more. That what I spoke did good for other people. "It starts with me," he said tapping his wrist where those words were tattooed.

I didn't really understand the last thing he said but I nodded. Thanked him. He gave me a big bear hug. And it didn't even feel awkward.

I shared this story because this weekend I will attend a blog conference that I have been wanting to go to...absolutely free to me. There was a giveaway on a friend's friend's blog and I entered. And won.

There has been a lot of planning since then to make sure that my family and especially the baby are taken care of while I attend. There has been a lot of excitement. There has also been some anxiety on my part. Some old feelings of fearing crowds, first impressions, meeting new people, making new friends and contacts.

God brought the memory of this round table and Tim Timmons to mind. For some reason, then and now again, God has asked me to step outside of my comfort zone and go ON MY OWN to meet new people in a very big way.

Last night, as I was praying and giving these fears over to the Lord (again), I began to wonder about Jesus' time here. With the disciples, the religious leaders, the political leaders, the strangers...I wondered about His personality interacting with others. Was He gregarious and loud, laughing and joking and putting others at ease? Was He bold and daring, calling people out and getting the task done no matter the cost? Was He meek and mild, choosing peace over confrontation and someone that could always be counted on? Was He thoughtful and analytical, seeing exactly what was going on long before others and speaking right to the heart of a subject?

As I remembered all of the stories in the gospels, an old song came to me and I knew. He's the Lion AND the Lamb. He was all of those things that I listed above at different times. Still, I wondered...was He ever comfortable here? He was never the top dog, after all.

He had to be uncomfortable. His home was heaven. A limitless spirit, He entered a limited human body. He humbled Himself greatly and made Himself uncomfortable to be obedient. To change the world.

Sometimes I can feel like my wallflower personality in a new setting is less-than the social butterfly personality. But the truth is...the more I get to know people, the more of a social butterfly I become myself. I am not *just* a wallflower. Sometimes, this wallflower likes to leap off of the walls and onto the dance floor.

The Lord comforted me with these thoughts last night. That I am just how He created me to be. I am favored by Him. And so are you. And we are different. And still favored, each one. And I am in awe of Him, once again. He has proven once again to me that humility comes before honor and when I am weak...He is strong.

Oh, I finally figured out what Tim Timmons was talking about when he said, "It starts with me." Turns out...it's from one of his songs AND actually was on my list of songs to sing at one point way before I met him because it's message was exactly my heart. God is funny like that. Enjoy:

And check out updates on Tim Timmons and his ministry at:
http://www.timmonsmusic.com/

Thank you for reading and for prayers!
Liz

Be the first to respond!

Leave a comment

  •