Yesterday I came across a CD that I had bought a few years ago and carried it out to my truck. I love all kinds of music: some country, a lot of Hank Jr., some pop, a lot of classic rock, a little rap (old school rap, really old school not this gangsta stuff), some grunge, but mostly rock. I love to hear the electric guitars sqeal, and then roll the windows down, open the sunroof, and crank it up some.
The CD that I found yesterday is not one that you would imagine a pastor buying, but we have already established the fact that I'm not your typical pastor. Now don't get me wrong, I also love listening to Third Day, Kutless, Chris Tomlin, and guys like that. But every now and then, a boy just has to get the rock 'n roll on. Yesterday was one of those days. I loaded the CD into the player, (after I figured out how, because I don't use this one much), rolled the windows down, opened the sun roof, and cranked it up a little.
Oh, I almost forgot to tell you which CD it was...Kid Rock; Rock and Roll Jesus. Yeah, I'm kind of a Kid Rock fan. Now I know what you may be thinking, especially those of you who are familiar with Kid Rock, "How can you listen to that stuff and support what this guy is doing?" Well, while I don't agree with his lifestyle, or his attitude sometimes, as my dad said when I was growing up, "Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and then."
One of the songs on this CD is called, "Amen." I admit, that's one of the reasons I bought this CD. I was a little intrigued that Kid Rock would have a song on one of his CD's called "Amen." So I bought it and gave it a listen (I really like the CD by the way). But this was a life lesson for me, and one that I feel compelled to share.
It clicked this morning when I was reading the devos for the day. In 1st Corinthians, chapter 4, Paul is talking about the cost of being an apostle, and if you take out the chapter separations this one becomes a little easier to read. You can see the connection with the chapter before it (And for the record, we've added the chapter breaks. They weren't in the original). Here is what he says: "Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful. I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself. My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent."
A clear conscience without being innocent. Things that make you go, "Hmmmm." Is that even possible? Can you have a clear conscience without being innocent? I think yes. And I think maybe, that is why I'm a Kid Rock fan. For me, it boils down to deciding to be real, or be fake, and the moment I realized that was the moment I came out of my shell as a pastor. I decided that I would rather be real, even though I may not be innocent, than to be a fake and lie awake at night because my conscience wasn't clear. It doesn't matter to me if I am judged by someone else, or by any human court (ok, I do try to live so that I don't wind up in a human court to start with). It didn't matter to Paul, and evidently it doesn't matter to Kid Rock.
Now please understand, I'm not trying to make the guy a saint, he's not...but neither am I. Most folks aren't, some just hide their real self a little better than others. I decided years ago to stop doing that. I would almost say that Kid Rock, with this song on this CD, has done more genuine evangelism than a lot of our TV evangelists have. Love him or hate him, he's real, and most of them aren't. Here's a link to the video if you want to check it out: (Warning....not for young ears)
So, judge him if you want to. Judge me if you want. I'm ok with that. I'll keep listening to my rock and roll, mixed with a little country, and some contemporary praise songs, and keep doing what I do. I'll dig into the scriptures, spend time studying them and writing about them, I'll take some time for my family and myself, I'll say what needs to be said and do what needs to be done, and then when I lay down at night, I'll sleep like a baby. Innocent or not, my conscience is clear.