Wednesday, April 28, 2010

What's Real Today With Ol' Pastor Matt

I like hip-hop music. Mostly Christian hip-hop music. I've been listening to rap music since about 1985 back when I used to listen to the Fat Boys, Egyptian Lover and RUN DMC. I had parachute pants and did a little break dancing. People thought rap was a fad back then and that it wouldn't be around 25 years later, but it still is.

When I became a Christian, I started listening to Christian hip-hop exclusively. Back in 1991 there weren't a lot of options as far as Christian hip-hop was concerned, but because I wanted to honor God in what I was listening to, I tossed all my NWA and Ice T albums and replaced them with DC Talk and T-Bone.

Over the years the genre expanded to the point where the Christian stuff was on par with the secular stuff so much that the beats and sounds between the two were indistinguishable. Whereas before, it was clear that the Christian rap was lacking in quality music that non-Christians could appreciate. Christian rap got no respect.

I've always defended Christian hip-hop as a music style that honored God, and was a great tool for outreach to people who were yet to know Christ. I've searched far and wide to find good music that I liked that I could feel comfortable sharing with anyone.

This morning I had a bit of a surprise when a Christian rapper whom I am friends with on Facebook posted a new song. His first couple of albums were amazing. Great beats. Great lyrics. Now he has changed his name and his style. The songs that he used to have about honoring God and ministry have been replaced with a song with a whole lot of cuss words and degrading lyrics.

Needless to say. I was floored. Honestly I'm having a bit of a hard time processing it all. I know, for you it may not seem like much of a big deal, but to me, a guy who has defended Christian Rap for all these years and then to see someone who 'sold out' so to speak to the mainstream, its a bit devastating. I really liked that guys music.

Here's what I think is going on- I think that most of us like consistency in the people that we admire. We appreciate who they are and what they stand for and when something happens that seems to erode at that foundation of who we thought they were, its difficult to assimilate the new information into our minds.

There's still a nugget in here today. Here it is-- or at least what I can get from it. First, I'm not going to go all crazy defaming this guys name. What he has decided to do with his music career is between him and God. He can play the banjo or death metal for all I care. That's irrelevant. I may choose to not listen to him, and that's my right. But it brings up an important point- was it possible that I elevated someone too much that when they didn't meet my expectations I was upset?

We all admire people. We all have people that we look up to. The trick is to love and admire them enough, but not so much that when they cease to meet our expectations that it damages our relationship with God. We can never elevate people to the level that who they are represents who God is.

We are to place our faith in God, not in people.

Has someone let you down before? Forgive them. Is there someone that you admire? Don't elevate them so high that when, and I say when, they let you down, they don't fall so far that it damages your idea of who God is. People change, but God does not.

Be blessed today.



  1. Good blog today. I need to be reminded from time to time that when certain people dissappoint me more than others, it's due more to my unfair expectations than anything they did. The more people mean to me the higher expectation I have of perfection - and that's just not fair.

  2. I can totally picture the break dancing, parachute pants Matt! :)