Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer…
Nat King Cole, 1963
While the calendar tells us that summer arrived three days ago, recent experience tells us that it’s already been with us for some time. For me, though, summer really only arrives after listening and singing along with Nat King Cole to a beloved tune from my childhood – Roll Out Those Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer. I can’t help but grin and feel better each time I hear that lighthearted song. The truth is that summer is not my favorite season. It is, however, always more enjoyable and tolerable even on the hottest days when that tune rattles around in my head.
Music and memories can do that for us. Deeply held memories and treasured musical pieces have amazing and at times even unexpected power over us. If there is a church and congregation which understands and appreciates that, you are it. And you are to be lauded for it. I have little doubt that over the years the memories made and musical pieces carried home with you from St. Andrew’s have enlivened and enriched the lives of your many neighbors near and far. I also have little doubt that this enlivening and enriching will continue far into the future.
But I wish to add a final note. Ironically, this was reinforced even while writing this little piece. For in checking the origins of Nat King Cole’s summertime song, I was surprised by an unexpected fact. I discovered that the song was originally written in Germany and recorded in German in 1962. It only made its way across the Atlantic in order to be re-written and recorded by Nat King Cole a year later. So what I had assumed and expected regarding this silly little song didn’t match the facts. And if you’re anything like me, you’ve learned over the years that similar surprises occur all the time in silly little as well as big important ways.
In keeping, therefore, with this piece’s musical theme I borrow and share words from another familiar and beloved song – “You can’t always get what you want. But if you try sometime you find you get what you need.” Like the summertime song, every time I hear this Rolling Stones classic I again grin and feel better. But perhaps not for the reason you think! For each time I hear it, I am reminded and comforted by one irrefutable fact. It is God, not I or us, who’s really in charge. And although the results might surprise us, when we ask, God answers. When we seek, we find. And when we knock, God opens the door.
With blessings, gratitude, and love…
Postscript: I wish to share one personal hope and prayer. It is that when we arrive in heaven, we discover that the angels sing as smoothly and soulfully as Nat King Cole!