Wednesday, May 13, 2009

About Christian Pop

Recently I was reading this. After I finished reading I mentioned to my husband that I am very thankful for Christian music and the stations that play it. I don’t understand the constant bashing of it.

I would hate to have no Christian music to listen to or for the stations like KSBJ that play it not to be available. I come from a secular alternative music background. Music defined me before I was a Christian. It moved me and directed who I was. I was a teenage child tossed by musical winds – the emotions brought on by the music I listened to. When I became a Christian I stopped listening to all the music I’d previously listened to. I put it away and eventually got rid of it.

I admit that I have a very hard time understanding how people who have lived without Christ and then come to Christ can continue to listen to the secular music they listened to before they were a Christian. When I’m out somewhere and hear one of the songs I previously listened to playing in the background I am instantly reminded of who I was before I knew the Lord and the pull to dwell on those thoughts and memories is strong and very unhealthy for me as a Christian (and as a wife and mother). Maybe this only happens to me, but somehow I doubt it. I know that for me it would not be healthy for me to continue to listen to the music and/or bands I’d previously listened to. So I am very thankful for Christian music and the radio stations that play it. Often when I’m in the van with my children I actually thank God for KSBJ. Without KSBJ my children would be listening to songs about drunkards, immorality and drugs. The world would surround them every time we got into our van. Because of KSBJ my children are surrounded by songs of praise and worship.

Admittedly, I don’t know the heart of these artists and I’m sure that they are not perfect, but neither am I and to be honest I wouldn’t want to be a Christian artist for a million dollars because the lure to sing for myself and my glory would be too great. The pull of the world on these artists must be extreme. The stress on their families…we need to be praying for them.

I am going to be honest and admit that I get bored with Christian music so I’m very, very glad the songs have a short shelf life. I personally would not want to have to listen to Petra or White Heart or any of those other bands that were playing in the infancy of the Christian pop culture – they were just getting their feet wet and most of the music was…not so good. And honestly I’d be saddened to find out that those artists were making music in those days to be remembered anyway. I'm hoping that their goal was simply to try to emulate secular Pop culture so that Christian kids would have an alternative to secular music. I'm hoping that their goal was to glorify God and not themselves.

Which brings me to what I really wanted to say…

I also mentioned to my husband that I felt that there was something wrong with this man’s (the CCM writer) perspective. But I couldn’t put my finger on it. My husband then did what he often does and hit the nail on the head. He asked, “Why does he even care about longevity? Why does he even care whether he will be remembered 20 years from now or whether his music will be known by our grandchildren? Is he singing for God’s glory or his own?” If he was singing for God’s glory, then he would be singing/making music to glorify God and to express his devotion and love for God and being remembered and played in 2020 would not matter to him.

Somehow I can’t imagine John Newton writing Amazing Grace and saying, “Gee, I hope they sing this in 2009.”


Jared said...

But I didn't see it as about the artists' longing for longevity. I saw it as the Christian culture's protecting of the heritage, so to speak. Having a longer memory and not always craving "the new."

And maybe the stuff from the 70s, 80s, and 90s was just not good and should be forgotten.

But John Newtown is remembered not because he strove for his own glory but because the Church treasured his gift to us and protected it and remembered it.

Surely that kind of memory is a virtue, isn't it?

Mark said...

Jared I think you are right,
...the 70s, 80s, and 90s was just not good and should be forgotten.I'm kinda glad I'm not listening to "Friends are Friends Forever" or anything by Amy Grant, anymore. (No offense to the artists, I still love MWS.)

Now Stryper is a different story. For example we are keeping their heritage alive in Benjamin's mullet. (Seriously, he has a mullet.)

danielle said...

Jared, I confess I wasn't thinking about protecting our Christian heritage - maybe because the subject is such recent history.

I do think that protecting our Christian heritage is very important and since you mentioned it, I've been thinking about it a lot.

Lately, I've been reading through the Bible chronologically. It is impossible to do so without realizing just how short our memory is.

Yesterday, I was listening to an old message by Nancy L. DeMoss about George Mueller and it was all about remembering and protecting our Christian Heritage (you can read the transcript or listen to it here……later in the series John Piper speaks about him as well). As I listened, I thought, “yes!” and “why should he be remembered?” because he was seeking and serving God and he was not seeking his own glory or worried about being remembered in the years to come (which is what I was hearing when I read the comment you posted by the CCM guy, but maybe I misread it I didn’t read the whole article). That by the way was my point about John Newton as well. I was saying that he wrote Amazing Grace to glorify God and for no other reason. My point, in a roundabout way, was that all we do should be done not for our glory, but for God’s and that if we are doing something for God’s glory it shouldn’t be important whether we make it big or not. We will do it (art or whatever) because we have to – art in whatever form will be done because it will be our expression of love to God (and if it is good then God will probably raise us up and we will be remembered).

Oddly enough, part of the reason we home school is to protect our Christian heritage...but I'm not sure how to explain that to you.

Today I was watching a You-Tube video about how Muslims are taking over the world and turning our churches into Mosques – that is a loss of our Christian heritage (and it makes me want to weep).

Anyway, just wanted you to know you've got me thinking about Christian heritage. I’d love it if you would write a post on Thinklings and expound upon it.


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