Ray Charles On Preparation

Posted: March 5, 2011 in Uncategorized
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Ray Charles Robinson was born on September 23rd in 1930 and eventually passed away on June 10th in 2004 due to complications from liver disease. Ray Robinson is known by most of us as Ray Charles and is cherished by many and known as the “father of soul.”

The blind soul singer was not just a cherished musical icon. He was a man who had great wisdom. In fact in the year 1946 Ray auditioned for a musical group and was told that he was not good enough. Later as Ray recalled being shot down, he said, “that was the best thing that ever happened to me. After I got over feeling sorry for myself, I went back and started practicing so nobody would ever say that to me again.”

In his book “The 17 Essential Qualities Of A Team Player”, John Maxwell follows this Ray Charles narrative with a well known statement that says, “You can claim to be suprised once; after that, you’re unprepared.”

Mr. Charles got this concept. A concept that at it’s core is biblical. 2 Timothy 2.15 says, “Study to show yourself approved to God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

Just like Charles committed to not failing and sought be prepared in all that he did after his failed audition, Christians must also take on the same resolve. While Ray will forever be remembered as a soulful icon, the world would have continued if it had never heard him sing. In stark contrast, the world needs to hear the message of the cross. It can’t survive without that hope that comes with salvation in Christ Jesus.

In closing I would challenge you to be a little bit more like Ray Charles. No I am not telling you to sing a Pepsi jingle, wear sunglasses, become blind or even to play the piano. I am telling you to pursue your studies (of Scripture) with the resolve that you or your Savior will never look foolish. Together let’s become “approved workmen who do not need to be ashamed.”

  1. Robin Morse says:

    How can we be an effective witness if we do not prepare? Great post. Thanks for keeping us on our toes!


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