Monday, 10 June 2013

Would a Song with any Other Lyrics be as Sweet?

We've all heard the famous quote from the play Romeo & Juliet: "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet." A concept that has often been proven true - just because something has a terrible sounding name doesn't meant that it is terrible. A rose could be called a thorn and that certianly wouldn't detract from the beauty God has given it.

But today I am going to pose to you a question that may seem a little strange: would a song with any other lyrics be as sweet?

Before I begin, I want to start of by saying that a blog is a place where one can feel free to express their opinion: they are, in essence, "opinion sites". So do not for one minute think that what I say here reflects what the Bible teaches necessarily - my prayer is that this post will simply trigger you to think more on the subject and look up scripture for yourself. Also, please do not think that what I say reflects the opinion of all the writers on this blog: indeed, they may all disagree with me here! I look forward to our discussions on this topic! :D 

Back to the subject at hand now: so, would a song with any other lyrics be as sweet? This is something I have wrestled with for years - I confess that yes, I am rather old-fashioned and prefer old hymns and classical music over contemporary worship songs or music any day! But over time, the Lord has taught me that I need to not be so judgemental of those whose music tastes differ from me, I should never think that my personal preferences in music make me any more godly than my brother or sister in Christ. How wrong that is, and yet it is a trap I fall into so easily! I, as with everyone, needs to bear in mind Romans 14 and Matthew 7!

That said, I do have one complaint to make of the modern music industry which I believe is encapsulated by the title of this post. The sad reality is that often the lyrics of a song don't make it very sweet: many a time have I been in a shopping mall and heard a tune that sounds quite catchy only to catch what the words are and realise that what is being said is actually endorsing things that the Bible expressly forbids. Whether it be immoral behavior prior to marriage, blasphamey, swearing, lyrics that direct the mind to thinking about certian parts of the body...the point is, are these lyrics God-glorifying? Certianly not! And yet, I see so many Christians who simply go along with the latest music trends, turning a blind eye to these things. Now, I am not saying that all music, or all secular music is bad and that you need to toss out all your CD's. I'm not saying love songs are inherrently bad - after all God is the author of love and Song of Solomon is one pretty full-on love song! I myself love listening to Hayley Westernra's music and Celtic Woman, both of which do not shy away from singing love songs! But as with everything - books, movies and so on, we need to be prepared to examine our choices in light of what is pleasing to our Heavenly Father.

I know you've probably heard it before as it's often quoted, but Philippians 4:8 says, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things." This is what we need to do!

One little complaint I have, that I certianly don't expect everyone to agree with me on, is the Christian worship music industry. Now, there are many amazing songs out there, don't get me wrong! Even if the style of music is not to my taste, it certianly a lot better than many other things you could be listening to. However, one question I pose to you that if I song is branded as a "Christian" song then why is it so hard for some of them to include His name in them right from the start? Many is the time I've heard a Christian worship song that starts off going something along the lines of "I adore you, worship and adore you..." and so on. All well and good - nothing wrong with those words! And in the context of a church service, we're certianly aware of who we're talking about! 

But I put it to you, that taken out of context, how would a non-Christian know that it was a Christian song, say, if they heard it in the shopping mall? For all they knew it could be just another love song! I do know that often at some point in the song, there is a reference to the Lord, the fact remains that it is not always clear right from the start who the praise is directed towards. What I'm trying to say is that if a song is a "Christian" song, why can't we be bolder in proclaiming who it is that we adore and worship, rather than leaving it up to the listener to work it out or wait until several verses in to find out. How much simpler if we sung from the start, "Lord, I adore you, worship and adore you..." and so on! I know that this probably comes across as overboard but it is at times rather tiresome to sing a worship song in church only to have the focus on "I" and not the One whom we're singing to!

I'll finish up there. I apologise that this has come across as a rant but it has been on my mind for quite some time. I'd really love to get a good discussion going on this, so please do write a comment with your thoughts and why you agree or disagree! I look forward to hearing what you think! And please set me right if you feel that I'm getting something wrong! :)

So, would a song with any other lyrics be as sweet? I certianly think that often it could be but do you?

Oh - and out of interest, feel free to share your favourite music recommendations too! :D 

God bless you as you serve Him!


Megan and Abby said...

Wow, I can't believe how well you expressed your opinion, and I completely agree with you! I often think of the same things when I listen to music. Thank you so much for sharing about this!


Violet said...

Not a problem, Megan! I'm glad you found it helpful! Congratulations on graduating too! :D

God bless!

Violet said...

I read an article today here: which discuses this topic in more depth and does help to convey some of my feelings/concerns on the subject (though I don't necessarily agree with everything the article says). ~ Violet <3 ~