State of Play #004 "Unappealing and Nothing New" (Part 1) by Andrew Funderburk on 2015-02-27 10:02:51
On a consistent basis I flip on my local Christian music station to find music that encourages me and isn’t feeding me a trashy message. On the other hand though, I find that on an almost equally consistent basis I’m a little (or greatly) disappointed with the lack of creativity that I find on mainstream Christian radio stations.
I realize that hours of time are put in at the studio to produce what is heard; however, I listen to what many people term "secular” (which in this article will be referred to as “mainstream”) stations. And I think the same amount of hours are put into their music as well. Most of the music on Christian radio eventually all begins to blur together and sound the same. Sometimes something will catch my ear. As I listen to mainstream radio though, I find that it is catchy in rhythm, beat, as well as having lyrics that are well arranged.
Why then does the one that is less uplifting sound more appealing in presentation? What is it that draws my ear, as well as many others, to the mainstream musical sound? Why does Christian music on Christian radio all sound the same? Has Christian music become so focused on believers rather than reaching out beyond our borders? Why does there appear to be a creativity gap between Christian music and mainstream music?
King Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes 1:9, “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.” This is definitely true of mainstream music. While there have been creative ways to say, “I wanna have sex” as of late (i.e. Hozier’s “Take Me to Church”), it’s still not a new message. At other times, mainstream artists take a hard hitting, gritty look at life (i.e. “The Monster” by Eminem or “Read All About It” by Professor Green). The same angle can be taken on Christian music. We don’t necessarily have a “new” message either; however, the Object of the message, within Christian music, gives mercies that are new every day (see Lamentations 22 and 23).
Believers can still experience newness of life from Him, because He still remains mysterious to our mortal minds. As far as getting gritty and realistically looking at life, I don’t always find that in Christian music. I do find a message that speaks to me, because I am a believer. But if I had no idea who Jesus Christ is, this music would have no appeal, due to my lack of understanding of the verbiage contained in the lyrics. Essentially, it wouldn’t impact me or be hopeful, unless some sort of miracle happened. In the coming weeks, the questions that have been asked will be walked through in an attempt to discover answers. Welcome to the ride!
Slightly Obsessed #192: Heaven Is Calling: Consider Jesus
Some days we can barely hear it. Other days it drives us to our knees. But it’s always there; that persistent tug in our souls. Whether we trudge through our days or chase the stars of fame and fortune, we can’t drown out the cry that sounds silently in the pit of our being, jarring us with its urgency and moving us with its tears.
No matter what you may be going through in life, I want you to know that God's grace is sufficient for you. You may have messed up, you may have failed, you may have gone the wrong direction, you may have gossiped, or much worse, but God wants you to know that it does not define who you are. He does. He and His grace is much more powerful than anything you might have said or done. Grace always shocks. It always amazes, and it always stuns. Grace is what we all need. It's what everyone groping around lost in the darkness needs to know.
Slightly Obsessed #191: You Can Give Others the Gift of Courage
My father lay propped up in the hospital bed, his face ashen against the white sheets. My step-mother and I huddled around him in the cramped space of the progressive care unit in which he was recuperating. He had suffered three heart attacks in the space of one month. None of us had gotten much sleep in the last few days. So far, we had seen little of either the hospitalist in charge of his care or the cardiologist on staff.
Slightly Obsessed #190: A Warbird’s Lesson
On a recent hot July day, we took in an air show in our town. Vintage planes, including a couple of impressive old warbirds, sat majestically on the tarmac for inspection as we darted from wing to wing to find relief from the withering heat.
These planes are still operable, so although some of them were open for people to walk through, the cockpits were off-limits for obvious reasons. No one wanted a tragedy to happen because an unauthorized person tampered with the controls. People who don’t know what they’re doing shouldn’t be in control.
Slightly Obsessed #189: The Calling
The sound must have been a maddening echo that haunted him at first, tormented by the rooster’s crow that mocked his empty proclamation of loyalty. For three days, his faith lay in the grave with the Savior’s body, darkened by the memory of his public desertion.
Slightly Obsessed #188: Freedom
He was shouting “Freedom” as he plowed his car at twenty-one miles an hour into the granite monument engraved with the Ten Commandments.
A video posted on the suspect’s Facebook page depicted the man in his car facing the monument as a women’s voice, presumably on a car radio, asked, “Where do you go when you’re faced with adversity and trials and challenges?”
Release Date: July 28, 2017 Reviewer: Andrew Funderburk Rating: 4 stars
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