[I have sent them out into the world]
When I sat down to write this one, my heart was heavy, but I knew that the burden was light. (Matthew 11:28-30) I don’t write to be heard. I write so that God’s voice might be heard. (I don’t write on my own either.) I understand that it’s His voice that sets the captives free, not mine. So I pray, “Lord, give me the words.” and then I pray “Lord, help them to hear Your voice above all of the noise.”
I knew there was at least one song to go with this piece, so I typed the words that were on my heart into the search box. I listened to a couple of the songs that came up right away and saved them to my YouTube account. Then I listened to the last song. Without a doubt, I knew that this was one of the songs that I’d use. My heavy heart began to lighten as I listened, not only as a result of the words being sung, but also because I could see so clearly the beautiful heart that was singing these words. This was a heart filled with love for her Jesus, and a willingness to share the spirit and the gift that God had given her. I cried. I always do when God’s love overwhelms me.
It would appear that the devil has been trying to stir things up. His aim seems to be towards the Christian music industry. If you haven’t heard the news, I’m sure it’s just a matter of time before you catch wind of something. So, what’s the big stink, you ask? Well, what reeks is all the finger pointing and stone slinging towards the lovely Lauren Daigle for appearing on the The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
One comment I caught referred to Lauren as a Jezabel and another referred to her as a wolf. Some of the comments were an attack on Ellen DeGeneres. Is this Love? No, it isn’t. Lauren’s heart is right. Her response to all the criticism was this:
“I don’t have all the answers in life and I’m definitely not gonna act like I do, but the one thing that I know for sure is I can’t choose who I’m supposed to be kind to and who I’m supposed to show love to and who I’m not, because that’s the mission right?” she continued. “Be who Christ was to everyone.” [source: Billboard.com ]
Lauren also said this: “I think the second we start drawing lines around which people are able to be approached and which aren’t, we’ve already completely missed the heart of God,” [source: Billboard.com ]
“When they kept on questioning , [Jesus] straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” –John 8:7
I couldn’t agree more with Lauren. Good for her for being a light to the world. Good for her for not hiding her light. (Matthew 5:14-15) This dedicated artist has that same light and beauty that I see in the performers of the first video you’ll find at the end of this post. It’s no wonder the devil is hell-bent on cutting her down and causing a commotion. Who are any of us to judge where God sends her and who she should show her kindness to? None of us should be withholding kindness from anyone. Anything less than this isn’t love.
“Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.” –Romans 14:4
Only last week I posted a piece on lies, and this week I’m seeing those lies flying left, right and center. Don’t buy into them. Another comment that struck me was that this wasn’t even limited to Lauren Daigle or Ellen DeGeneres; it’s even turned into an attack on the Christian music industry. Lies follow lies. (Jeremiah 9:6) Specific groups and songs were mentioned, one of which is a personal favorite of mine: “So Will I” by Hillsong United. Then someone commented that the devil had corrupted the Christian music industry all together.
He’d love for you and I to believe this one. Why? Because Scripture tells us to encourage one another with Psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. (Ephesians 5:18-20) If he can con us into his lies and get us criticising as well, then he can get us to stop listening to the music that has the power to encourage and build us up. If he can convince us that our favorite Christian artist has joined his ranks then he can get us to tune our ears to him instead. Don’t buy into these lies.
The devil can be pretty convincing, but it’s not too difficult to see through the lies if we hold to the truth. The truth is this: As followers of Christ, we are called to live upright lives. (Titus 2:12) We are called to be obedient to God and share the good news of Jesus Christ. (Romans 1:5; Acts 13:47; Acts 20:24) We are also called to love both God and our neighbor (1 John 4:8, Mark 12:30) Anyone who is adding to the noise by pointing fingers at Lauren, Ellen and even the Christian music industry is not being obedient to God and is not loving his neighbor. Instead, this self-righteous fire is being fueled and is spreading like wildfire, just as God spoke through what I posted last week: It Only Takes A Spark
Anyone who uses the term “righteous judgement” to justify their behavior doesn’t understand what this truly means and doesn’t have the right to claim it either. We’ve been instructed to take the plank out of our own eye first so that we can see clearly. (Matthew 7:5) When Jesus was being judged incorrectly for healing on the Sabbath day He said this to His accusers: “Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.” (John 7:24)
The question then is how do we fight this kind of fire? Well, the Bible says that we overcome evil by doing good. (Matthew 11:28-30) Flinging stones back, backbiting and cursing is counterproductive; it’s only more evil and only adds more fuel to the fire.
“Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.” — 1 Peter 3:9
Instead, let’s support those who are ministering to us in song. Let’s pray for them wherever God leads them. Let’s also pray for those who are blinded by Satan’s lies. If you are one of the ones who wants to believe that segregation and finger pointing will keep you from falling for the devils lies, sadly, you’ve already fallen for that lie. Making people paranoid is Satan’s modus operandi, but God didn’t give us a spirit of fear. (2 Timothy 1:7) In some of the comments that I read, it was clear that Satan was twisting Scripture to suit his own purpose. In fact, to justify all of the accusations, he used this particular verse quite frequently:
“You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. — James 4:4
The devil knows Scripture well, and knows exactly how to use it for his own agenda. This verse isn’t instructing us to segregate ourselves from the world, as he’d have you believe. Jesus too was accused of spending time with sinners. He even shared bread with them. None of us would belong to Jesus if He hadn’t done so, and I likely wouldn’t be a Christian myself if my husband had shunned me. It was through Andrew that I came to accept Jesus.
We ALL are sinners and we all have fallen short. (Romans 3:23) Some of us, most mercifully, are sinners who’ve been saved by God’s grace. (Matthew 9:10) As the saved, it’s our obligation to point the way to Jesus so that those who don’t know Him may receive that same forgiveness and freedom that we ourselves could never earn. For a more in-depth look at this verse on ‘friendship with the world’ please read this Focus on the Family article.
If God doesn’t send us out into the world to speak up for those held captive by Satan’s lies, then the captives won’t be set free. We must speak, not only with our words, but also with our lives because our actions prove that we are in Jesus and that He is in us. Therefore, we must go out into the world and walk as Jesus walked. Thankfully, Jesus does send us out. If you agree, please share this post. Let’s start a fire of a very different kind: one that’s fueled by God’s truth and love.
“I [Jesus] am not asking You to take them out of the world but to keep them safe from the Evil One. They don’t belong to the world, just as I don’t belong to the world. Make them ready for Your service through Your truth; Your teaching is truth. I have sent them into the world, just as You sent Me into the world. For their sake, I am making Myself ready to serve so that they can be ready for their service of the truth. –John 17:15-19 New Century Version (NCV)
Lord Jesus, thank you, for answering prayer and giving us the words to write, speak and sing. Help us to see through the devils lies and to act in love, for you have called us to this. We ask that you protect us from the Evil One. Snare our tongues, Lord, when we are tempted to speak foolishly, and cause us to speak up when there’s a need for Your voice to be heard. Help us to appreciate those that you’ve called to encourage us in song, and thank you so much for the gifts that you’ve given them. They encourage and comfort Your people, helping us to know that You are both with us and for us. ❤
“Therefore Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. The one following Me shall not walk in the darkness, but will have the light of life.”” –John 8:12
I’ve posted the song “Speak” twice so that you can not only read the lyrics, but also see the beauty of God’s servants. Let’s not quibble over the lyrics that we don’t understand, or complain that a song is repetitive (Evidently, sometimes we need the words drilled into our heads–repeatedly.) Bare in mind, that when we complain we are really grumbling against the Lord. (Exodus 16:8) Please remember also, that God gave each artist creativity to use for His glory, so there’s always a certain amount of personal creative interpretation. The Lord gave the Psalmists, writers and poets this same creativity as well; It’s an attribute of God Himself and a beautiful expression of their love for Him.
P.S. If you choose not to listen to any/many of the songs below, don’t miss out on the “So will I” video at the end. Even if you’ve heard this song before, it’s such a stunningly beautiful video. (Well done New Hope and thanks again for sharing!)
Music that Speaks
“If you gave your life to love them, so will I” –So Will I / Hillsong United
Photo Credit for this post [Pixaby.com/thommas68-2571842 ]