Third Annual Masonic Charities Golf Tournament
October 4th is our Third Annual Tournament! Check out jbggolf.org for details or to donate!
As I was preparing for the installation today, I kept thinking, "I have to remember my hat, I have to remember to bring my hat!" It seems to me, one of the first things an incoming master does is go hat shopping. In today's world, we all wear many hats:
And now, today, I am honored to wear the Master's Hat.
- In our relationships; we wear husband & father hats
- In our careers; entrepreneurial, business and work hats
- Spiritually; we don our devotional hats, (couldn't be a Mason without one)
- In Health; our workout, yoga and nutritional hats - as many of you know, I love putting on my running hat
The journey towards wearing this Master's hat actually started 6 years ago. When I agreed to become the Junior Steward, unbeknownst to me, I agreed to put on an "invisible" Masonic hat. This "invisible" Master's hat has been on my head every moment of the previous six years as I worked through the Stewards, Deacons and Wardens positions. And now today, in recognition of those last 6 years of devotion to my brothers, my lodge and Masonry as a whole, for one year, I get to wear a real hat.
A Masters hat is always a unique expression of who he is but it also carries with it, a deeper meaning. With it comes the beautiful burden of leadership. It is beautiful in that there is an opportunity to lead, give back and serve your brothers and the institution of Masonry. A burden because with the honor comes great responsibility. Leading the lodge exposes all of your strengths and weaknesses at the same time. Wearing the Master's hat is also the ultimate leverage to be active and participate as a Mason. To lead, one must be present. But, a year from now I will take this real hat off and the Senior Warden, DM Lawson will choose his hat to wear. Then, it will be back to wearing an invisible Mason's hat again. So much of what has been my purpose as a Mason will be gone, I made it through the line of the lodge, my goal achieved, Past Master! What will bring me back to the lodge then? What brings brothers back to lodge?
That is a tough question, after all, isn't life always easier with fewer hats to wear. We get tired at night, have family and work obligations and there is only so much time to squeeze in a quick workout. How easy it would be to not come back for a bit, which would turn into a bit longer and then a bit longer and then finally, maybe not at all.
Masonry has long been called a Secret Society but all Mason's know the real secret of Masonry is to make a good man better. Masonry can make good men great, great men outstanding and outstanding me excellent. We hold ourselves to a higher standard of what it means to be a man, mason and brother. We practice Friendship, Morality and Brotherly Love. My goal this year is to have your time away from home, family, work, health and devotional time be as meaningful, powerful and important as possible. I'd like you all to enjoy wearing your invisible mason hat whether you are before, in or after "the line."
My plan is to do that with Communication, Education and Participation.
Communication is the key to any relationship with self, God, spouse, children, coworkers and our brethren. Education fulfills our need for curiosity, growth, insights, wisdom and self-discovery. Participation in activities with our brothers and the community creates energy, power and change for good.
My promise to you as Master of James B Green, Lodge #735 is to Communicate regularly and often (you may be sick of it real soon), arrange and provide insightful educational programs for growth and make it enjoyable to participate in lodge activities.
It is in these 3 aspects that we walk the path to becoming better men and Masons. That will allow us to go back home and wear our other hats as better men than when we took them off to come to the lodge.
Every brother in this lodge has had an impact on my life and helped me to become a better man & Mason, for that I thank each of you. After 6 years, I am a better husband & father, business owner/entrepreneur, spiritual person and Mason.
I will do everything within my power to have the time away from your other hats be worth it. I promise to keep you informed and communicate well and provide the highest level educational programs. I promise to participate, serve you and see us all become better. Let's actively wear our Masonic hats this and every year; invisible and not. Let's continue to become better men together. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you this year.
W:.B:. James Murphy, Master
James B. Green #735 A.F. & A.M.