Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Larry Norman: No longer visiting this planet

When I had just begun my spiritual journey with Jesus in earnest (sort of a Saul-knocked-off-his-donkey event), most of my earliest mentors were musicians, whose music spoke to my heart and challenged my beliefs and lifestyle. Among the most impacting was Larry Norman. Although I only saw him from a distance at several concerts or festivals, his music was a major voice in my life.

Larry passed away a couple of days ago. I just returned from Mexico this morning to get an email from my fellow Norman-phile, Brother Maynard, alerting me to Larry's death.

Here is Larry's final communique, dictated from what would be his deathbed, just a day before he died:
I feel like a prize in a box of cracker jacks with God's hand reaching down to pick me up. I have been under medical care for months. My wounds are getting bigger. I have trouble breathing. I am ready to fly home.

My brother Charles is right, I won't be here much longer. I can't do anything about it. My heart is too weak. I want to say goodbye to everyone. In the past you have generously supported me with prayer and finance and we will probably still need financial help.

My plan is to be buried in a simple pine box with some flowers inside. But still it will be costly because of funeral arrangement, transportation to the gravesite, entombment, coordination, legal papers etc. However money is not really what I need, I want to say I love you.

I'd like to push back the darkness with my bravest effort. There will be a funeral posted here on the website, in case some of you want to attend. We are not sure of the date when I will die. Goodbye, farewell, we will meet again.

Goodbye, farewell, we'll meet again
Somewhere beyond the sky.
I pray that you will stay with God
Goodbye, my friends, goodbye.
— Larry
Goodbye, Larry. The world is poorer for your passing. Someday, I'll get to thank you in person. But for now, we rejoice with you, that you no longer see through a glass darkly, but face to Face.