29. Faith

Maybe some of you will remember Doc Severinsen, the flamboyant band-leader on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show. An outstanding trumpeter, arranger and conductor, Severinsen is most easily remembered by his colorful wardrobe, which became his trademark.

Carson’s Tonight Show was all but serious. And Severinsen was the third leg of a terribly funny trio, which also included Carson and Ed McMahon. Severinsen was the standout, the oddball, and Carson loved to make fun of his clothes.

At seventy-seven, Doc Severinsen still blows his horn and is touring across the country playing with different symphony orchestras. He continues to wear his trademark gaudy outfits and stands out especially against the formal backdrop of orchestra members who are typically dressed in black.

Last night I had the opportunity to see Severinsen perform and was struck by that contrast. Standing on the conductor’s podium in his bright yellow jacket and black leather pants, he played the music of George Gershwin and Duke Ellington along with classical pieces from Vienna. In my mind he best characterized the nature of music itself, as an oasis in the desert.

Music helps to inspire and remind me of the things I trust — of the consistent underlying beauty that surrounds all of us and calls our attention in subtle ways. We need daily to resort to the things we trust and there seek renewal. What is it that draws you?

Day 29-31 Guide:

We all have a tendency to get lost in the tumble and noise of the day, don’t we? But today, make it a special point to listen closely for the call to return home. What is it that leads you there? Music? Prayer? Writing?

I want you to develop the daily habit of dipping into the cool refreshing waters that lead you to your foundation and your trust, your faith.

© 2004, Levi Hill

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