Thanks to my friend Greg for letting me know that the Father Christian Rock passed from here to eternity in the wee hours of Sunday morning. He emailed me the link to a story on the Christianity Today website.
I was never a big fan of Larry. Nothing personal. As a performer, he didn’t appeal to me, particularly when I first discovered contemporary Christian music in the late ’70s. I liked other people doing some of his songs. In the very early days of performing – and while still a dispensational pre-millenialist (and that’s going back a long ways) – like ever other Christian teen I used to play “I Wish We’d All Been Ready”. Watching some of his performances on YouTube, I think I would enjoy him more now.
Nonetheless, I don’t underestimate the impact he had on a lot of artists to whom I made much more of an immediate connection, as well as his importance as a groundbreaking artist. Even a two-bit songwriter like me owes him a debt of gratitute.
I keep looking at this mirror
At the age around my eyes
Time is such an earnest laborer
Precision is its neighbor
Lay my body in the ground
But let my spirit touch the sky
– “I Hope I’ll See You In Heaven”
Give rest, O Lord, to the soul of Larry, in a place of light, in place of green pasture, in a place of revival, whence all pain, sorrow and sighing have fled away.