I have had a love/hate relationship with a banjo for several years now. I love bluegrass music. I especially love the sound of a banjo. Perhaps I should rephrase that. I love the sound of a well-played banjo. I am not very good, but I am loud! I truly enjoy "pickin' and grinin'" whether it is a guitar or a banjo. Playing a banjo is somewhat like rubbing your belly and patting your head at the same time (while hopping on one leg, saying the alphabet backwards, spinning counter-clockwise, and alternating your eye-blinking). Yet, when you get a song mastered, it sure makes you feel good, and it sure sounds good. The tough things usually are the sweetest things.
In Matthew 5:1-11, Jesus begins the "Sermon on the Mount" with what we call "The Beatitudes." In the process, He tells us we are to be doing some things that are tough. Mostly, they are tough for us because they reflect attitudes of humility, righteousness, and kindness. Generally, those are things that are tough for us, especially towards those who have mistreated us. That is tougher that pickin' a banjer blindfolded. Yet, Jesus tells us in each case what wonderful and sweet blessings we receive because of it.
It matters not whether you are a John Henry or a Darling Corey. When Atlanta Is Burning, there's a Pig In A Pen, or a Fox On The Run, don't get the Lonesome Road Blues or the Whitehouse Blues. Don't have a Foggy Mountain Breakdown with a Nine Pound Hammer. Instead, take a Clinch Mountain Backstep across Cripple Creek, and recognize how sweet it is when we trust in the Lord. When we do the tough things and make it through by His strength, it is sweeter than Rocky Top on a Gibson Mastertone. And there is no Dueling Banjos about that!