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Archive for May 30th, 2012

I recently got to go to a great concert, by the group Switchfoot. It was something I was so excited about, and they did not fail to impress me.

It was extra special because my oldest daughter came along with me. I could not have gone with her a year ago, because the venue they were performing at was a nineteen and over ballroom, and she would have been too young then.

On the day of the concert I was speaking with a good friend (one who I respect greatly) about the concert that we were to attend later in the evening. I had expressed my excitement over my concert plans, and appreciation that a group of Christians would take their music to the ‘secular’ public, and be enjoyed by them too.

Then she shared her perspective. Her perspective was that the Christian group was “selling out”. That they were watering down their message to the point that it was no longer distinctive as a message from or about God. That they had no place in the mainstream music market.

According to Wikipedia “selling out refers to the perception that someone is compromising their integrity, morality, or principles in exchange for money or “success” (however defined). It is commonly associated with attempts to tailor material to a mainstream audience.”

As one who is drawn to those who are believers in Christ, who integrate their personal faith, and Biblical principles for life without staying within the sanctuary of  ‘church’, I had to chew on my friends opinions. After all, one of my favorite movie quotes of all time, by Laverne, a gargoyle in the Disney movie, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, “you can’t stay cooped up in here forever.” I might even say that this quote by a stone cold, fictitious character is a (loose) paraphrase of Mark 16:15a, “go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”

Jesus said those words to his disciples when they were huddled all together having an early church potluck. They had gotten word from Mary that she had seen the risen Jesus … and they did not believe it. Then they had heard from another pair who had also seen Jesus … and they did not believe that story either.

These men, who had received their seminary training from the Son of God himself, were not able to muster the faith to believe that God could do the humanly impossible with the one they knew (or did they?) to be the long awaited Messiah. Was it because Jesus had not revealed himself to them personally first? Was it because they felt that they had the only right platform for Jesus to show up to?

Finally, after Jesus showed up at their potluck (notice they did not go out looking for Him), they believed in the risen Jesus. Mark 16:19-20 says, “after the Lord Jesus had spoken to them … the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it.”

Even they, who had been taught by the Savior himself, had to have their own eyes and ears opened to Jesus presence. Maybe, even today, Jesus and His message of hope, need to be taken OUT OF the church (go into the world) to be shared with those who are blind and deaf?

I am planning on chewing on the words of my friend a bit more. I respect her, and her views, and I know that I do not know the answers to every question.

When the lead singer, Jon Foreman, thanked people for coming and allowing them to share their songs of hope, I smiled … because I knew, what the group’s musicians knew, that God was in the house, and you would have to be deaf and blind to not see and hear His message of hope.

(song lyrics from pictures: “Your Love is a Song”, “Only Hope”, “Meant to Live”, “Red Eyes”)

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