Every Sunday, my friend Lee stands in front of about 500 people and plays his guitar. He hits the six strings hundreds, maybe thousands of times. He plays hard, using his guitar to help draw music from our vocal cords. Those six thin wires are at the center of the sound.
It’s an invitation for failure.
Lee changes the strings regularly. It is, for him, part of the cost of doing business.
But strings can still break.
So every Sunday, Lee carries two guitars down the hallway from his office to the gym. Every Sunday, he tunes both guitars. Every Sunday, he has two guitars in the guitar stand.
I know what you are thinking: big rock stars have backup guitars, but Lee’s no big rock star. It’s the biggest music gathering in Grabill, Indiana every week, but Grabill’s not so big, either.
But Lee’s responsible for helping 500 voices sing, 500 faces find God. He takes that responsibility seriously. A broken string is a large distraction. And rather than hoping it doesn’t happen, Lee spends the time to have a backup.
Many people I know look at the mission-critical task they do and think, “I hope that doesn’t happen.” Or they think, “Oh well, people will understand.” or they think, “But I don’t have the time to do that twice.” Or they think, “I can’t afford that.”
Meanwhile, every week, Lee quietly prepares a second guitar.
What’s your second guitar? Is it ready?