Have you ever heard a song on the radio that made you stop and think about life? Have you ever heard a song that brought tears of joy to your eyes? It doesn’t necessarily have to be a Christian song either. Generally, (for me anyway) the songs that hit me the hardest are the non-Christian songs, that if listened to in the right mindset can hint at deep spiritual implications. One song that does this for me is by a country singer named Rodney Atkins and is called “Watching You.” Yes, I do listen to country music. Normally people do not picture me as a fan of country music. Maybe it is because I am 6’ 4 ½” and covered with tattoos. But, coming from Western PA, listening to your father play in a country band, and growing up in the country, it kind of grows on you. Now, allow me to get back to what I was saying! The above-mentioned song is about how his son admires him, watches his every move, and imitates what he sees. It goes something like this…
“Drivin’ through town just my boy and me…With a Happy Meal in his booster seat…Knowin’ that he couldn’t have the toy ‘til his nuggets were gone…A green traffic light turned straight to red…I hit my brakes and mumbled under my breath…His fries went a flyin’, and his orange drink covered his lap…Well, then my four year old said a four letter word…It started with “S” and I was concerned…So I said, “Son, now where’d you learn to talk like that?”
“He said, “I’ve been watching you, dad ain’t that cool?…I’m your buckaroo, I wanna be like you…And eat all my food and grow as tall as you are…We got cowboy boots and camo pants…Yeah, we’re just alike, hey, ain’t we dad?…I want to do everything you do…So I’ve been watching you.”
“We got back home and I went to the barn…I bowed my head and I prayed real hard
Said, “Lord, please help me help my stupid self.”…Just this side of bedtime later that night…Turnin’ on my son’s Scooby-Doo nightlight…He crawled out of bed and he got down on his knees…He closed his little eyes, folded his little hands…Spoke to God like he was talkin’ to a friend…And I said, “Son, now where’d you learn to pray like that?”
“He said, “I’ve been watching you, dad ain’t that cool?…I’m your buckaroo, I want to be like you…And eat all my food and grow as tall as you are…We like fixin’ things and holding momma’s hand…Yeah, we’re just alike, hey, ain’t we dad?…I want to do everything you do; so I’ve been watching you“
”With tears in my eyes I wrapped him in a hug…Said, “My little bear is growin’ up.”
And he said, “But when I’m big I’ll still know what to do.”
“Cause I’ve been watching you, dad ain’t that cool?…I’m your buckaroo, I want to be like you…And eat all my food and grow as tall as you are…By then I’ll be strong as superman…We’ll be just alike, hey, won’t we dad?…When I can do everything you do.
‘cause I’ve been watchin’ you.”
I can relate to this song in two different ways. The first is that I can remember the days when my dad was my biggest hero. I wanted to be exactly like him. I would watch him. I would do the things he did. I would try to be him. This is why I am a drummer today. My dad is a drummer and was my biggest role model growing up. He inspired me to work hard at things and to never give up. So when I hear this song, I think about my dad and what it was like being a little boy (yes, I was little at one point in my life) watching his father and wanting to be like him.
The second way I can relate to this song, however is in a much more spiritual sense. Every time I hear this song, it makes me think of youth ministry. You see, I have been blessed with the privilege of being a spiritual director for a group of middle school students. Each week I get to teach them about God’s Word; I get to hang out with them; I get to build relationships with them; and I get to be their friend. While I am doing all of these things, I realize that they are watching me, just as the little boy watches his dad in the song. They are looking to me to be an example of how a Christian should act. Knowing this, it makes me even more thankful for the fact that God called me into youth ministry. I can not only make a difference in these kids lives with my lessons and spiritual guidance, but I can make a difference in their lives by the way I live mine. And that brings me great joy.
So in closing, I would just like to encourage you to stop and think about the music you listen to. Maybe there is a deeper meaning that can be taken from it…