Bro, Do You Even Read…

… the Bible?

bro do you even lift

Let me just say, I get great encouragement from worship music and mini sermons that keep me focussed on God throughout the day. Which is why I still listen to the Christian radio station.

But it is also the source of one of my biggest pet peeves – Christian music with poor doctrine (or perhaps just poorly thought-out lyrics).

I’ve posted about this before: Happiness is Not a Virtue

So, in the next instalment of “songs that get on my nerves” we have…

 

Steven Curtis Chapman – Live Out Loud

Wake the neighbours, get the word out
Come on, crank up the music, climb a mountain and shout
This is life we’ve been given, made to be lived out
So la la la la, live out loud
Live out loud, yeah

If anyone loudly blesses their neighbour early in the morning, it will be taken as a curse.
Proverbs 27:14

Kerrie Roberts – What Are You Afraid Of

So what are you afraid of
Show ’em what you’re made of
The shadows that you’re scared of
Are usually your own
They’re not the great unknown
You don’t have to wonder
You’re not going under
Grace has got you covered
God is in control
Go on and let it go
What are you afraid of

What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?
Romans 6:1-2
As an aside: I know, I know, these songs might not mean what I think they mean. Take this post in a light-hearted tone 🙂 I just can’t enjoy a Christian song if it has lyrics that grate on me like these ones.

 

If you’re a crafty person, you might want to head over to my other blog, Make it in the Margins because I have finally put up a couple of new posts.

Including this dotty apron which I started while I was pregnant:

DSC_0001

Feels good to get out the old sewing machine again and finish a project!

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6 thoughts on “Bro, Do You Even Read…

  1. I love Steven Curtis Chapman lol… I think his song is meant to be just full of joy.

    I think it’s crucial to get to know people – like really understand who they are, their history, and place that above our own pet peeves when they happen to be Christians doing a work for God. I know you have a good heart and your post isn’t meant to be critical of other Christians, but it’s always been very interesting to me how critical we can all come across with our “pet peeves” that we’re so quick to throw another Christian under the bus with a single Proverb. Proverbs ironically also tells us that making our annoyances known at once is foolish, and that a Proverb used as a tool by a foolish person, is like brandishing a thorny branch at others. We’re all condemned because we all do the same things. No one’s really got it all right all of the time. I’m sure there’s things you do that you aren’t even aware of that trigger another person’s pet peeves that prevents them from enjoying your blog or even your own work for Christ. They may even use a Proverb to make fun of how they don’t like/enjoy your work because you’ve violated their preferences/pet peeve. The problem with giving in to that temptation to let your annoyance be known at once is that it doesn’t really do anything constructive for you or others – it doesn’t really promote real spiritual growth, just fleshy pet peeves of humanness.

    He may be wrong with his lyrics at that one line, you may really have a point even in joking about it, but he’s legit in his faith and overwhelming amount of sacrifices he’s made throughout the years, Jess. He’s been through more pain imaginable with losing his daughter, and his song about Blessed be the Name of the Lord, is often sung by him with that pain in mind – and it was incredibly heart-wrenching for him to go through that, and to still somehow be able to bless God’s Name – it’s only through God’s power. We’ve met him a few times and I’ve cried when hearing him explain going through that time. I don’t really care for the other song, except that I’m happy that he’s joyful despite what he’s been through. And every time I hear his song Blessed Be Your Name, I’m reminded of what it took to sing it in good faith – to still bless God after enduring that amount of pain. He chooses to open his concerts with that song as a dedication to being firmly held to the belief that God is still good – even though God’s allowed him to endure one of the most painful losses on earth.

    I wouldn’t be too quick to let your pet peeves dictate an entire post even if it is in jest. I never see women I look up to allowing themselves to do that, even on their personal blogs, and if you asked them, it’s probably on purpose that they keep their personal annoyances/pet peeves about other Christians silent. We have to think about what we want to be known for… a woman who is easily annoyed and publicly denounces songs she can’t enjoy something because of the **slightest** thing? Or someone who instead chooses to look past their annoyance (just ignore it if bringing it to attention won’t really bring about any good) and focus on the person, their history, their works, or positive things and post encouraging things for others to read instead of pet peeves?

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  2. Thanks for your comment, Stephanie!

    You know, I love Steven Curtis Chapman too. Many of his songs have been a personal encouragement to my own faith over the years. So this post is in no way a personal criticism of him. I actually didn’t even know whose song it was until I went to write this post, and then googled some of the lyrics.

    I think you might be taking me a little too seriously here 🙂 In fact, I would bet that even Steven Curtis Chapman would laugh if someone pointed out that Proverb to him! The message of the song is great – “let’s not keep quiet about our faith”.

    Personally, I am comfortable with the place this kind of post has within my blog. This kind of thing really connects with some people, and obviously annoys other people (as you have shared). I’m okay with that. Not everyone will like every post.

    Thank you for the concern, though 🙂

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  3. I think it’s more that his songs are his work for Christ, so being annoyed on one line in his work for Christ seems overly nit-picky for a Christian. Even if it is tongue and cheek, it’s still allowing your flesh (pet peeves) to interfere with your spiritual growth of learning to purposefully look past those things. This quote from you:

    “I just can’t enjoy a Christian song if it has lyrics that grate on me like these ones.”

    is what made think it just seemed a little off for a Christian woman leading other women with her words. If you just can’t enjoy it, even though otherwise you know deep down he’d probably laugh about it, why focus on it?

    And yes, we all have our pet peeves, but I’ve seen that when it’s taken too far, it takes over a blog and the whole blog becomes criticizing or nit-picking other Christians’ works for Christ. I don’t think you’d ever go that way, but I’ve seen several women now go down that road and it’s so sad to watch. It takes over a person’s whole focus when we allow our pet peeves to dictate what we enjoy or don’t enjoy. What we push ourselves to support or no longer support (think being kind to enemies here, reaching out to people we don’t like, inviting them in etc.). Pet peeves get in the way of those things, which is why I think they’re actually hindrances to seeing a broader picture when there’s no real basis for them. One Proverb may ruin a whole song for you as you’ve disclosed. Just something to think about next time you feel a pet peeve come up 🙂

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  4. “This kind of thing really connects with some people”

    Yes… lol. The latest trend for blogging about marriage (for Christians even) is focusing on how they just **couldn’t** bring themselves to post 7 pictures of them together with their spouse in order to support love and marriage because seeing all the happy couples and their fake facebook marriages was their pet peeve. Many women connected through that pet peeve, that they hated seeing happy facebook marriages because it made them feel bad about their own marriage. Negativity connects people. But is it good?

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  5. “Lightheartedly Hateful

    Let’s call a spade a spade: sarcasm often gives us license to be lightheartedly hateful. Only I can look inside my heart and determine when I’m honoring God with my sense of humor and when I’m grieving his name. When my sarcasm condemns, judges, shames, or isolates God’s image-bearers, I sin against God’s cherished craftsmanship.

    I want desperately to grow in holiness and be known by my love instead of my sarcasm. Humor is a part of who God made me, and it’s my job to learn to submit my snark at the foot of the cross and wield my powers for good, not evil.

    Over the past few months the Holy Spirit has helped me identify the crouching sins associated with my sarcasm. Asking the following questions has helped in my battle against sinful sarcasm:

    1. Is there even an ounce of truth behind my sarcasm?

    “Good morning, honey! I see you’ve decided to leave all the drawers open this morning. What an interesting choice!” A chuckle and seemingly innocent “just kidding” doesn’t hide the fact I’m actually quite irritated with my husband for failing to remember open drawers are a major pet peeve. If there’s truth behind the barb, ditch the sarcasm. It’s nothing but fancy-schmancy passive-aggressiveness, and it leads to bitterness, anger, and unresolved conflict. Love is patient and kind (1 Corinthians 13:4). In some cases, love may require me to flee the temptation to be sarcastic (1 Tim. 6:11) and wait for the Spirit to change the meditations of my heart (Ps. 19:14)

    2. Would God be more glorified by my silence than my humor?

    We’ve all heard this adage: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” When in doubt, I should pray the words of Psalm 141:3, that the Lord would set a guard over my mouth and keep watch over the door of my lips. My words are powerful. Submitting my sense of humor to the wisdom of the Holy Spirit honors God and protects those around me.

    3. Will words of edification bring more joy to the hearer than words of sarcasm?

    My jokes have the potential to get a few chuckles, but my edification can extend God’s grace (Heb. 12:15), admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, and help the weak (1 Thess. 5:14). In light of eternity, choosing to encourage and lift a soul is infinitely more valuable than a few seconds of belly laughs.

    Grace for the Sarcastic

    By the grace of God, my sinful sarcastic tendencies have been confronted many times over. If yours have, too, don’t despair. There’s grace for the sarcastic. Christ died while we were yet joking, jabbing, and laughing at others. He came to pardon our prideful, mocking, and rebellious hearts. He made a way for us to be restored to fellowship with the Father when we deserved punishment and hell.

    God’s unmerited grace through Christ leads me to repentance when my sarcasm goes too far. It compels me to apologize when my words cut deep.

    Brothers and sisters, let’s not sarcastically banter our way out of relationships with one another. Let’s keep humor funny and sin mournful. May we steward our humor by the grace of God and keep our sarcasm from masking unholy heart attitudes.

    (https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/battling-sinful-sarcasm)

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