Today I’ve been thinking about the time I got radically turned on and inspired by rock n roll… for some reason. It was elixir to my 6th grade ears that were burned out by the regurgitated pop music on the radio at that time. I was in the back of a limo with a souped up sound system being picked up from school with a group of friends on the way to a birthday party. Somehow someway, one of the older girls hijacked the sound system and blasted her favorite songs. Among her favorites was AC/DC’s Back in Black.
That song was electrifying. It was less then a minute into it before I took someone’s pen and scribbled what lyrics I could make out onto my palms so when I get home, I could look it up. This was clearly a moment Shazam was created for.
That was the first time I heard the power of mere instruments without embellishing synths. Angus Young’s guitar cut through the stagnant air locked up inside that limo. All I heard on the radio up to that day was Kanye West and Brittney Spears- I had no IDEA what music sounded like before this decade. Alll this time junk was being played on the radio, there was this good stuff (or what I thought to be good at the time) behind it all. I felt like I finally found a strong part of my identity, because I was never able to lock into soulfully with the pop music on the scene during that time. It was all fake compared to these self-made rock n roll bands of the 70s and 80s.
Just as there was a large difference between generational music between my ears, there is a large difference to me between generational ministry from the original birth of Pentecost to today. If you look in scripture to the firey, persecuted Christians who were so inspired and filled by God centuries ago compared to today, it’s culturally abnormal. Can Christians today even identify with that experience? That authenticity was what strikes me as exciting- and it was authenticity that lit the fire of my new life through Jesus. Despite having grown up in church, hearing the same lines over and over, it took testimony’s of people whose messed up lives were changed inside and out by Jesus to grab my dull ears.
The nature of Jesus was most clearly revealed to me through sinner’s transformed lives. I thought Jesus was way more mainstream, “candy,” and popular before really getting to know Him. He actually desires getting into the dirt of people’s lives, ready and wanting to reach them wherever they’re at.
When we decide to show our scars & speak for the authentic,pure, abnormal excitement of the gospel- the covers of love and truth will be blown off. Let’s let people hear the cutting gospel, stripped of all the icing and embellishments.
- The Cross and the Switchblade by David Wilkerson
In Brennan Manning’s book Ruthless Trust, he tells the story of the brilliant ethicist John Kavanaugh who went to work for three months at “the house of the dying” in Calcutta. He was seeking a clear answer as to how best to spend the rest of his life. On the first morning there he met Mother Teresa who asked, “And what can I do for you?” Kavanaugh asked her to pray for him. “What do you want me to pray for?” she asked. He voiced the request that he had borne thousands of miles from the United States: “Pray that I have clarity.” She said firmly, “No, I will not do that.” When he asked her why, she said, “Clarity is the last thing you are cling- ing to and must let go of.” When Kavanaugh commented that she always seemed to have the clarity he longed for, she laughed and said, “I have never had clarity; what I have always had is trust. So I will pray that you trust God.”
- Proverbs 16:24 (NLT)
- Matt Chandler (via littlethingsaboutgod)
I believe I’ve heard Beautiful Exchange by Hillsong about a million times. Sure, it’s one of my all time favorite worship songs but over the years I guess I’ve heard it so much that it really lost it’s essence & when I heard the beginning notes to it today being played at a wedding I wanted to go to sleep.
But as the chorus grew, I was reminded of the message of the song while simultaneously being brought into an awareness of where we were right now in this moment, watching a bride and groom give up their own separate lives for each other. I’ve never before heard Beautiful Exchange in this context before. I was watching one before my eyes and the reality of how our Groom died to give Himself up for His bride shook me.
Everyone asked me, “so how was the wedding?” and all I could respond was, “It was beautiful.”
- Edwin McCain, I’ll Be
- Lisa Unger (via thatkindofwoman)