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Moore: Do you feel like we do?

In the misty past before COVID-19, I would spend Wednesday evenings with an awesome group of teenagers at our church youth group. One evening, after being humiliated at basketball by a group of gleeful middle-schoolers, my friend and volunteer youth leader extraordinaire Rob brought up my second favorite topic. Naturally, that would be classic rock.

Normally such discussions revolve around the “desert island album” idea or obscure trivia about the connected roots of iconic bands from the ’60s and ’70s. For example, what’s the connection between the Guess Who’s 1970 anthem “American Woman” and 1974’s “You Ain’t seen Nothing Yet?” from Bachman–Turner Overdrive. That’s actually an easy one. 

But I digress. With me still catching my breath, Rob went for the big question: What is the most quintessential, era-defining classic rock song ever?

That’s an impossible question, right up there with: What do women want? Do you mean most influential, most popular, most covered, or purely most enjoyable after a long day’s work? 

Now, that said, it is possible to make a shortlist, and that’s what Rob and I did. Like two scientists zeroing in on cold fusion, we examined the merits of several classic anthems. Finally, I agreed with Rob’s suggestion, and we had it. The most quintessential, era-defining classic rock song ever, at least for that night, was “Gimmie Shelter” by the Rolling Stones.

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See what I mean? Right now some of you are nodding in agreement, and others are rolling your eyes. But if you are into classic rock, it’s on the list. There’s a fun trivia question associated with the title, but I’ll leave it to you to figure that out.

My favorite variation of the question is: Best guitar solo ever?  This is just as hard, but I would give the award for best studio guitar solo to the legendary David Gilmour for “Comfortably Numb” from Pink Floyd’s “The Wall.”  There are at least 10 songs right there with it. But when it comes to best live guitar solo, the answer is a hands-down no brainer. At least for me.

It was Nov. 22, 1975, and Memorial Hall at the State University of New York Plattsburg was sold out. Performed that night were 14 minutes and 15 seconds of classic rock bliss known as “Do You Feel Like We Do.” Mr. Peter Frampton, I want to thank you. Can I get a witness?

At this point, we could dive into the fun details of how Frampton made his guitar talk, but instead, I want to shift our focus to God. After all, this is a column about God. Aside from the thrill of his guitar work, Frampton’s question is one that resonates. Do you feel like we do? In the depths of your soul, have you ever asked that question as your own? With my questions, frustrations, doubts, anxiety, maybe even depression … do you feel like I do? Does anyone?

God, what about you? If you are the divine one up in heaven, and I’m down here trying to make life work, do you feel like I do? What about all of us? We are faced with disease, civil unrest, political chaos, unemployment, and an epidemic of depression and anxiety. God! If you are really there, do you feel like we do?!

My friend, from the bottom of my heart and with all the sincerity I possess, I will tell you that yes, God does feel like you do. He’s not just up in heaven.  In fact, through the mystery of what Christians call the Trinity, God made himself flesh and dwelled among us, as one of us. He knew our pain, our sorrow, and took all our rebellion with him to a Roman execution where he bore our brokenness in his death. He went on to defeat death and thus opened the door to a new life of hope and freedom.

In the New Testament book of Hebrews, the writer says (and I’m paraphrasing here), that Jesus, as God, is able to understand and relate to all our weakness, because he faced everything we do, and yet never gave up, never lost hope, and never sinned. And because of his great love for us, we may approach the God of grace with confidence, to receive his mercy and grace in our time of need.

God does feel like we do. He does feel like you do. If you are seeking answers in this life that feels so fragile, I would love to tell you about the God who has given me shelter. I’ll buy the beverage.

Oh, and lest I forget, rock on.

Ethan Moore is the pastor of Trinity Church in Edwards. He and his wife, Lisa, have lived in the valley since 1995. You can reach him at godandcoffeevail@gmail.com.


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