Its always amazed me that I can barely keep my eyes open if I read my Bible past 10 at night but I could stay up to 3 in the blessed AM reading gear reviews. I could sit and stare at my pedal board for hours. At times I get distracted during the sermon because I can't take my eyes off the little orange light on my Tiny Terror. Modern worship comes with a whole host of auxiliary components that worship by and large has been free of for the better part of 10k years. Presentation programs, sound equipment, staging and lighting, projection, and guitar equipment are just a few of these things. It seems like we put so much into worship but I question to what end and for what purpose. Consider Chinese Christians huddled up in a basement somewhere singing songs a cappella with no overhead projector let alone media-shout with motion backgrounds... What drives their worship is pure unadulterated spirit and truth... It has to be... What else could it possibly be! For me, equipment can often become a distraction. It takes up time and energy, a great deal of money, and my attention. Now I don't think there is anything wrong with gear... In and of itself its pretty amoral... (In fact as I write I have my own fairly formative rig sitting just to the right of me.) At the same time it sure can be distracting and kind of unnecessary. Seriously, is anyone ever going to notice when we have achieved the ever allusive perfect tone? Are we offering God a better sacrifice because we are playing a class-A tube amp instead of a lowly solid state? Now obviously if we want to play worship music in the medium that we have come to know it today we need some equipment (lets face it Daniel Carson would be dead in the water without a delay pedal) and there in lay the dilemma. How do we utilize and enjoy these things yet not be driven by them. How do we praise God with the equipment He has given us without committing idolatry in the process? Any thoughts?

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I knew it was her! She's the one who left that scathing article in my mailbox at the church office!
The last word on the title of this discussion is not edifying for anyone on here. I think it is distasteful, it might be every second word for you, but to me it is offensive and I think it would also be offensive to God.
You talk about idolatry keeping us from praising God, maybe removing the 'idol words' would be a good start. We are in the world, not of it. How can we be light shining in a dark place if we keep stepping backwards into the shadows? All the praise, worship, singing, music, and donations will mean nothing if we can't even keep our own mouths clean.
I mean to encourage you to aspire to be pure before God.
And here I thought it was a perfectly unoffensive substitute for that other offensive word. Perhaps you're right, we shouldn't use this word since it refers to the guy who invented the toilet. His family must be tired of it by now. But did you know that Paul used the other word (Greek version of course) in Phillipians when making a point about worldly things? So maybe we should use the other word instead of this one. It would provide some relief for Mr. Crapper's family AND it would keep us in line with Paul.

And do you know what one of the Chronicles writers called idols once? Yep, another direct and poetic reference to excrement (it only comes out in the Hebrew). Kind of ironic that the original poster used just such a reference when he was trying to imply that we "worship our guitars" at times. Kind of ironic how biblical it is to use such imagery at times, eh? Personally, I think the Bible was a little stronger.

Also, the original poster was not trying to be offensive at all. I don't think it's nice to imply that it's every other word coming out of his mouth as I'm sure it's not. Most people in society use this word precisely NOT to be offensive. How it comes to be offensive with some folks I'm not sure. Perhaps any colloquial words other than pure medical terms are deemed "wrong"? That's certainly not biblical.
Stevo, what a great observation... While I am aware that skybalon is most accurately translated as s*** I was not intentionally making that connection with equipment and worldly things. That with your observation about idolatry in Chronicles really brings a fresh Biblical perspective to the discussion.
I'm glad you knew what I was talking about! After I put it out there, I was prepared for anything.

All this seriousness aside, I'm currently hankering for a Gretsch 6120. Not the Electromatics which sound good but don't get that real Gretsch sound. Yes, it's not a $200 guitar...
Dude...if you have the budget for a great axe like a 6120...go and get it! It doesn't matter what you play, but rather how you play it. Among his many guitars, Lincoln Brewster plays a couple of Strats that retail for under a thousand bucks. My Strat, before modification, cost $400.00. Its worth considerably more now.

The point is, as I'm sure you know, that your gift isn't in your guitar...its in you.

There is a minimum level of instrument that will inspire one to even play. Until a few days ago, I had thought my American Strat was my bare minimum. But then I bought a $300 MIM Strat for my son through Craigslist. Plays well, sounds pretty good, fit and finish were darn good. Then we decided to open it up and do the master tone/blender pot modification. I was impressed that they used all the same components as the American Strats. I can't find a reason to spend more on a Strat right now! (I do think the wood is rather light and has less sustain...) But with the Gretsch thing, the Electromatics are made well, but they just don't sound true Gretsch.

What mods did you do to your Strat?
I thought about the tone blender mod, but ended up just beefing the pots to 500K. Then I put GFS 60's-70's overwound staggers in. I put a GFS HI Mass trem block in, because even though I don't use a lot of tremolo, the Hi Mass block still adds a bunch of sustain and tone to the guitar. I put the string saver saddles on, because they really help tone and sustain as well. I'm not done with it, by any means, but it really sings!
I didn't know about that trem block when I bought my Callaham. It's a great block, but perhaps costs more than it should. Do check him out though, he has great stuff:

You'll like the tone cap/blender mod, you should try it. All you need is a 1M pot and a couple of wires changed. I can send a diagram. I did it to my strat and really like it.

I had the string saver saddles at one time but didn't like them too much. Maybe I'll try them again.
I have a Gretsch 5120. For the $500 I paid for it I think its a great guitar. I also played a Country Gentelman at the time and that was of course much nicer (action, sound, etc.) but it also cost 5 times the amount. For what I had to spend I am very happy with it. A friend of mine just bought a low end semi-hollow Epip and that think is a pice of firewood.
I'm tempted - I think you can put in the TV Jones pickups and a few minor mods and it sounds more "true Gretsch". Man the difference in cost is staggering really.

If your friend didn't already replace that Epiphone, my son has an Ibanez that's the 335 knockoff and it's a very nice guitar.
A buddy of mine plays an Oscar Schmidt...OE40? Single cutaway jazz lookin' thing...reminds me of a Gretsch...that guitar rocks!...of course he DID mod the pickups...yup, TV Jones.



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