State of Play #006 "Unappealing and Nothing New" (Part 3) by Andrew Funderburk on 2015-03-13 09:48:14
This week we continue the thought processes that have been covered over the past two weeks. The foundational question to the thoughts are, "Why is there a creativity gap between Christian music and mainstream music?" This week we move forward to the questions, "Why...does the one [mainstream music] sound more appealing in presentation?" and "What is it that draws my ear, as well as many others, to the mainstream musical sound?"
For some, the answer may seem to be one-sided; however, it appears that the answers to these questions are multi-faceted. For the majority, it could be that the answer is rooted in one reasoning but with many branches coming out. One reason that I've found to cause me to gravitate towards mainstream music is honesty. There is an honesty in the way that many of the artists feel and express their thoughts, whether positively or negatively.
At times, it correlates with my own feelings, whether that is happiness, anger, sadness, frustration, struggles of being human, etc. Many times, when a song comes in story form, it automatically tunes the listener into what's being said. Tied closely with that would be the intimacy of hearing someone else's story. It makes me feel closer to the person singing the song. There are a few occasions where I hear true honesty of self-expression in Christian music, as well as, personal stories of the artists themselves. In saying that, though, there are some [Christian artists] who do open up their hearts and lives to the listener.
Due to the fact that much of Christian radio sounds the same, some may have the want for something fresh, rather than hearing the monotony that Christian radio might have. There is also an element of creativity that many mainstream artists have as well. They don't necessarily have to remain in one genre of music.
Already you may be nodding, saying, "That's it!!! That's why I listen more to mainstream music!" Some of those reasonings may be part of why you do gravitate towards mainstream music, but take this next paragraph as a check-in first. With the greater part of mainstream music being glorification of the flesh and its desires, the reasoning for gravitating towards mainstream music for others would be to "experience" certain aspects of the flesh without ever "doing it."
I think of Jesus when He said many times that if we so much as hold onto certain thoughts, we have already become guilty of that act (see Matthew 5:28). Furthermore, Jesus also says, ..."out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks," (Luke 6:45b). I don't think we can ever fully justify listening to some things in light of not being of the world. We can identify without jumping into the mud itself. We are called to a higher standard. In light of all of that, a question to ask that correlates to what the main topic is would be, "How can Christian artists remain true to glorifying Christ while discussing the struggles of the flesh?" Moreover, how are we as believers keeping ourselves in check in regards to what we are filling our hearts with?
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?”
Slightly Obsessed #187: He Reigns
Has a more beautiful declaration ever been written? Without that truth, we would have been forever lost to life. But because God had all authority firmly in His grasp, Satan had no chance of wresting the universe from Him. Because God reigns, Jesus could heal sickness, forgive sins, and conquer death. Because God is in control, evil was outwitted. Because He is Lord, there is power behind the words, “It is finished.”
Slightly Obsessed #186: When the Path Ahead Is Fearsome
The room was dark and shadowed, the only sound within its walls the rhythmic whoosh of the ventilator beside my son’s bed. I sat on an uncomfortable chair jammed into one corner of the room. In the faint light that fell from the window across the pages of the Bible I held, I tried to corral my stampeding fears long enough to find some comfort from God’s Word. Outside the door of his room, a cacophony of voices from the nurses’ station jarred our shattered nerves.
Slightly Obsessed #185: Clean
They were just turning down the lights in the sanctuary as I awkwardly slid into a seat near the back of the church. I was tired and soiled by the previous week. Life had been especially difficult, and I had not handled the pressure well. I felt completely unhinged spiritually and wholly unworthy to be in God’s presence. The worship team began with one of my favorite songs, and I hoped I didn’t look as vulnerable as I felt.