Friday, January 29, 2010

A little controversy for your Friday

A few years back Derek Webb (originally a member of the Christian music group Caedmon's Call) came out with a solo album called "She Must and Shall Go Free".  He created a lot of waves at the time, partly because the album was quite a departure from his work with Caedmon's Call, and partly because of his lyrics and subject matter.  The album did quite a bit of calling Christians out, and one song in particular was so direct and harsh in its' language that a few major Christian retailers initially refused to sell the album.  As I was driving to work this morning that particular song popped up on my iPod.

When the album came out I was at a point in my life that I just didn't want to fake it any more.  I had grown to resent putting on my smiling shiny face on a Sunday morning at church, when in reality I was going through some really rough stuff.  And it brought me to the realization that far, far too many of us do that, and it serves no purpose but to make people question Christians sincerity and authenticity.  Now I'm not saying that we should all spill our dirtiest laundry when someone asks how we're doing on a Sunday morning, but I am saying that portraying a cookie cutter life with no struggles on a day in day out basis really does not help anyone when that's not really the truth of your life.  At that particular time, I had come to a point of realizing how deep my failures really are, and what it really means to be forgiven by Christ.  I had always been a "good girl", and thus never really comprehended why Christ would really have any big issue with me, if that makes sense.  It took making some mistakes, and paying the price for those mistakes, to see who I really was in Christ.  I had to understand what I was capable of, before I could understand His mercy and grace.  And as painful as all of that was for me, it's the most valuable lesson I have ever learned, and it changed me forever.  Frankly, it made me a far better person than I was before, back when I thought I had it all down.

So whenever the song "Wedding Dress" comes up on shuffle, it always transports me right to that place of remembering just how thankful I am to have a loving Savior.  And how even on our best behavior, we are unfaithful to Christ in so many ways.  I need that reminder to knock me back to reality every once in awhile.  And I need that reminder to renew my own mercy and grace for other people in my life.  Because really, we're all in the same boat, just on different levels and at different times.  Finding that mercy changed my life, and if I can help someone else find it...well there's really nothing better I could do for them.  

Maybe that's one of the things Derek Webb had in mind when he wrote this song and fought to put it on this album and have it distributed.  He made the choice to use two words in the song that many find offensive.  I actually like how they offend me, because it reminds me of just how offensive I can be when I'm not honoring Christ with my life and my actions.  And I think that's a reminder that's serves a very good purpose. So there's your disclaimer.  Now take a few minutes to listen...

If you're interested in reading the lyrics, and an excerpt from an interview he did regarding the song, you can find that here.  There used to be an entry up on his website explaining the song, but he's promoting a new album and I can't find that anymore.  You can hear more from She Must and Shall Go Free here, or just more awesome Derek Webb here.

So I feel like I took the party down a notch from the previous post. Sorry about that, but sometimes I just have to say what's on my mind. :)

1 comment:

  1. "I had to understand what I was capable of, before I could understand His mercy and grace." - great stuff, mary!