Author Archives: Sharolyn


This post combines two things for which I am thankful: our dedicated military, and awesome neighbors.  Here my neighbor shares some of what they have been through this Fall.  (Shared with her permission.)


Once Upon A Time

Wow… I liked a TV show!

Did anyone else see the pilot of “Once Upon A Time” last night?  10 minutes in, they had me hooked.  It seems like the kind of thing the Addison Road crowd would appreciate.

he responds to negligence by contempt

Shortly after Schoenberg died, his widow found this thing he had written about Charles Ives.

“There is a great Man living in this Country – a composer. He has solved the problem how to preserve one’s self-esteem and to learn.  He responds to negligence by contempt. He is not forced to accept praise or blame. His name is Ives.

What do you think this means?

one key to worship

I figured something out about worship.  Since it is a rarity to catch a glimpse of how the mystery of worship really works, I hope I can put it into words.

Often on Sunday mornings, after we check our kids in at the rolling computer and they are signed in to their respective rooms, we head to the sanctuary for the worship music.  Often I am trying to leave the frazzled and extremely recent morning events behind as well as trying to get musical technicalities out of the forefront of my mind (whether I’m playing or not) in order to mean the words I am singing.  “Worship…. worship!”  Trying to ignore these distractions can be like  saying… “Don’t think about purple giraffes!”  Now you can’t help but imagine a purple giraffe.  The sequence of events on most people’s Sunday mornings don’t lead to a heart that is prepared for worship, no matter how hard we try in a specific moment.

Twice lately we’ve had the opportunity to worship with a body of believers who dismiss the kids after worship.  I absolutely love it.  With my daughter singing at the top of her lungs, and my son in my arms and playing with my pony tail, tears well up at the sound of our family together, worshiping God.  Although my kids don’t have anything directly to do with the words on the screen, from this mother’s heart, they are the most tangible and overwhelming sign of God’s grace for me.  I am so humbled to be their mom that I don’t have to work at humbling my heart; my overwhelming love for them is so evident in this environment that it is easy for me to understand how God might feel about me.  When my kids are with me, I don’t really care what else is going on, I just want to sing to and about God!  I also love hearing my kids sing the songs throughout the rest of the day.

Maybe we weren’t all meant to go our different directions during the worship set.  There is a need for individual time with God, but perhaps there should be a routine corporate time for the families He saw fit to put us in.

Post Royal Wedding Thoughts for Husbands

Hi Husbands.

Most of you rock.  Keep up the good work.  I’ve heard some bemoan the Royal Wedding and can practically see the eyes of your profile pictures roll when the topic comes up.  And for you I have the following thoughts.

I am not naturally sports-minded.  I enjoy the emotion in the last few minutes of any close game.  I get a kick out of watching lives change, for example, with the NFL draft this week and watching guys’ faces upon the fulfillment of their lifelong dreams.  But I can’t predict the next play, or come up with a good game strategy, or tell you stats.  My patient husband never writes me off when it comes to sports.  He is happy to explain things to me in a way that does not make me feel any less smart.  Even though the Super Bowl is of no importance to me, I can still buy snacks at the grocery store and invite people over on the day of the game.  I’m interested in what interests him.

You are (probably) not Royal Wedding-minded.  But I’ll tell you a secret. If you pay attention to it, for just a few minutes, you may score some points with your wife.

Some have said, “What’s the big deal about some people we’ve never met getting married?”  Good question.  What IS the big deal?  I can tell you for this girl the curiosity of anticipation involved things girls love.  For example: weddings (duh!), traditions, nobility, fashion, and people (could have a whole conversation on Elton John alone).

But here’s the heart of the answer.  She walked down the aisle.  He exchanged glances with his brother.  He finally saw her.  And we watched him mouth the words “You look beautiful.”  Forget about it!  Prince Charming is telling his bride she is beautiful.  That’s the part I can’t explain.  I physically had to grab the hand of the woman next to me.  You don’t have to get it.  But if you can be interested in what makes your wife’s heart leap, you just might see the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.

We all create our own circus.

I totally agree with Jerry Seinfeld, that the upcoming royal wedding is a circus act.  But so is the Superbowl.  So are the Oscars.  And so was the last episode of Seinfeld.  We are all drawn to different events that make life fun and interesting.  Therefore, I say, cheers to the handsome couple!

Family Quotes

Me: I realize you are capable of going to the grocery store, but if there’s anything you want me to get for dinners while I’m gone, put it on the list.

Jason: McDonald’s gift cards should be fine.

Has your family said anything memorable lately?

the devil can’t have all the good music

Our associate pastor has been preaching a four-week series.  Usually whoever is preaching doesn’t request a specific postlude (played after the benediction, as the congregation is exiting), but sometimes new blood behind the pulpit brings fresh ideas.  Each Sunday he requested a specific pop song that tied into each sermon, making it more memorable.  For Mark 2, when the paralyzed man is lowered from the roof due to the large crowd that had come to hear Jesus, the worship band played James Taylor’s “Up On The Roof“.  I loved it.  One of my favorite songs has a whole new meaning.

The politics of Christianity

Sharolyn Borris doesn’t not particularly feel like starting a Facebook war, yet feels compelled to vent her frustration over a quote in this morning’s newspaper directly linking Christians to The Tea Party.  Because if you’re one, you must be the other.  UGH!

a theory on theory

“Once I begin to inspect, study and analyze the bits and pieces that make up the mechanics of music: the notes, the timbres, the durations, the rhythms, the harmonies, the melodies, the forms – as soon as I try to find out if there are some recurring patterns, or if there are some technical theories that can describe what makes the music sound that way, I’m now in the land of theory and always recognize that these analysis have a different purpose than the simple act of making music.  How I technically think about and describe what’s being played is a different subject from the act of playing.  And it’s only use is to help me more fully understand how to better do what I want to do.  How to play better; perform better; communicate better; be a better musician.”  -Chick Corea

deliberate practice vs. innate talent

Tonight I played jazz with a great upright bass player.  So rhythmically musical.  He soloed great – not “I’ve learned my scales, and let me prove that to you,” but thoughtful stuff.  He has a young face.  As to not misjudge his age and embarrass myself, I asked, “What school do you go to?”  (leaving the answer open for high school or college).  Turns out he’s been a high schooler for a month.  He just turned 14.  My mind is still blown.  As the pendulum swings, I tend to believe that “talent” is more a matter of discipline.  But this kid reminds me that, sometimes, people are born to do things.

a marriage-centered family

Last night we skipped my kids’ carnival.  It might not sound like a big deal, but for a while it was for me.  Dozens of friends were there with jumpy houses galore and game stations.  And with a BBQ, dinner would be taken care of.  When I dropped James off at pre-school, I heard, “What station are you manning?” and had to say, “none”.  I heard, “What are you bringing?” and had to say, “I’m dropping off a pre-packaged veggie tray.”  We’ve gone the last two years and our kids have had a blast, and whatever it costs has already been covered by our pre-school tuition.  It felt like an unnatural time to leave town.

Meanwhile, later today, some dear friends are throwing a wedding reception in Carmel.  “Why don’t you just go overnight?” my in-laws asked.  “Sure!” Jason jumped at the opportunity.  I thought of all the logistics.

The turning point for me came on the beautiful drive down in my father-in-law’s green Audi TT.  Jason looked at me and said, “If we had passed up this opportunity, there is no way we could say we have a marriage-centered family.”  I was good to go.

Long before we had children, we had explored the idea of a kid-centered family versus a marriage-centered family.  We noticed the volume and detail the Bible instructs about marriage versus the raising of children.  We’ve watched how some awesome families around us have parents who get away and stay in love.  And how families that require the kids to provide the joy and center of activity also have kids who bear the brunt of stress and emotional responsibility.

And so the logistics flew out of the convertible.  My kids don’t know the good time they missed for two hours last night, but Lord willing they will have parents who have laid down the foundation for their family.

Our church IT guy (and bass player extra…

Our church IT guy (and bass player extraordinaire) just started a social network for scheduling church musicians. Apparently we will get an e-mail asking us to play a certain week of rehearsal and services. We click “accept” or “decline”, and he goes from there. Makes sense to me! I bet it will save a lot of administration time. We’ll see.