I went to the Austin and Beaumont Make A Difference shows with a big group of Gomer friends. Most of us live in Texas, but we had a couple of fly-ins, one from Arkansas and one from Arizona. We met other Gomer friends at the venues. There were about a dozen of us at any given time. It was quite a party!
I had not seen Third Day in concert in a year, so I was really looking forward to breaking the fast with these shows.
Both were so much fun, but the Beaumont show was extra special. First, we got to have an impromptu WIRED party with Third Day, which was very special and unforgettable. What could be better than a getting to spend time with the guys of Third Day while eating chips, salsa, queso, and guacamole from Pappasito's?
Plus, they shook up the set list a little. They took out three songs from the night before ("Lift Up Your Face", "Cry Out to Jesus", and "Call My Name") and added four songs, including a couple of songs we requested, namely "Creed" and "Make Your Move"! I was sad not to hear "Lift Up Your Face" again, but I love that funky bass intro to "Make Your Move"! It's such a rockin' song! It's awesome on the record, but live It's beyond awesome! I was so excited, I thought I might just explode or fly or something! I couldn't dance hard enough or sing loud enough to keep up with the enthusiasm I was feeling. I can't wait to hear it again in the spring! I hope it becomes a staple for years to come!
My favorite part of "Creed" is the cool intro, which they didn't play, but it's a good song nonetheless. I was happy to hear "I Believe" as I love the Wire album and those songs bring back such great memories of the Wire Tour.
"Revelation" and "Otherside" are two of my favorite songs to hear live. I love when they all gather around Scotty to watch him go crazy on the keys during "Revelation"! And "Otherside" was made to be played live. I never get tired of it.
I never was really a huge "Thief" fan until they revamped it and put Mark's electrifying guitar solo into it. Don't get me wrong. It's a very stirring song that fills me with emotion and reverence. But I'm always quite dumbfounded as I watch Mark play the solo. This time it was hard to watch him play, because he was out on the catwalk with his back to us in the pit, but still I got to hear it! And I do think that that song showcases Mac's magnificent voice very well.
I also love the new songs "Gone" (which I always want to spell "Gawn") and "Children of God". I can't wait until spring for the Move Tour when they will be playing even more of the new songs live! Move is a fantastic album!
A certain drummer, which shall remain nameless, put us up to a bit of mischief before the show. He told us to pick a song on the set list, and then when they start playing it make faces of disgust like, "Oh no. I can't believe you are playing this!" This was supposed to make Mac, Tai, and Mark wonder what was going on, but it didn't have that effect. I think Tai may have noticed. Mac didn't. Mark was on the otherside of the stage. David did notice, and it took him a second to realize what we were doing, and then he grinned. But we thought it was funny, so it was worth it. Not that there's anything wrong with "Sing a Song", but there are so many, many songs in Third Day's catalog I'd rather hear live.
"Tunnel" was also added to the set. It's a fun, jumping kind of song, in which I always feel compelled to raise my arm or arms high and kind of point to emphasize where the light is when we sing the chorus. I don't know why I do that, except that maybe when they first started playing that song, years ago, Mac might have done it or encouraged us to do it, but I don't think so. (Those hand motions you learn from Mac have a tendency to stick in your brain and become part of the song, even years later.)
And Tai wore his cowboy hat, which thrills us Texans...although I'm never sure why. But we do love it and appreciate it. All the guys were really "on" in Beaumont. It seemed like they were having as much fun as we were, and boy, were we!!!
But both Austin and Beaumont were great shows. We had so much fun. I could feel such love around me from the friends that surrounded me, and coming from the guys on stage. I don't know how our time with Third Day and each other could have possibly been any better than it was. These two Third Day shows (#66 & #67 for me) were an amazing way to end my Third Day Live fast. I feel rejuvenated!!!
There is much more to the Make A Difference Tour than just Third Day's set. There's lots of interaction between the bands all throughout the show. Michael W. Smith, TobyMac, and Jason Gray all brought their best, and the crowds enjoyed ate it up. Max Lucado challenged us, and many children were sponsored each night. And we could feel God's mighty presence there with us. If you have not bought your tickets, please consider going. You will not regret it.