Ok, there's a new Kid Rock CD out, and you know I have to write about it. I might even let my kids listen to this one, with the exception of a couple songs. I don't think I like "God Bless Saturday" or "Rock Bottom Blues." But, being the good Methodist that I am, I'd almost say that Kid Rock might have had some sort of Aldersgate experience, or at the very least, something has happened in his life to bring on a CD like this one. It's a lot more mellow, and almost has a Bob Seger/Eagles feel to it.
More than that, there is a lot of God talk in it. I know, that's what I thought too! Kid Rock, talking about trading his boots for forgiveness? Who'd have thought it? Part of me is suspiciuos that it's just a great marketing strategy. Church folk are one demographic that he knows he doesn't have, so hey, let's throw in some God stuff and see what happens.
The CD is "Born Free" and there is already a little controversy over the title track, but that's not the one that has hit me so far. It's the third track on the CD, titled, "Care." Now, I'm still not making the guy a saint, because he's not, but neither am I. I can see, though, that if the church opened its mind a little, Kid Rock could be somewhat of an ally. Our kids are listening to this stuff, whether we like it or not, so why not use it?
"Care"...here's what it says: "cause I can't stop the war, shelter homeless, feed the poor. I can't walk on water, or save your sons and daughters. Well, I can't change the world, make things fair. But the least that I can do is care." It's a good song, with a good feel, and a message that I might not totally agree with, but that can be a great conversation starter. Personally, I think caring is only the beginning and can't be the end. Once you realize that you care about someone else's situation, then you start looking for ways that you can make a difference.
Honestly, I know that he was probably mildly intoxicated or under the influence of some other substance when most of that album was recorded, so I'm certainly not placing him on a pedestal. If there were ever a group of folks in need of repentence, it would be our rock idols. But...here's where the gospel of John, a new rock CD, and our call to discipleship crash head on.
I know I may get in trouble for this, but hey, I'm used to that, so here goes. John tells us in the 17th chapter of his gospel that we are sent into the world. The question I have is, "What does that look like?"
What I have noticed in the church is that we would much rather withdraw and pretend that this stuff doesn't exist. We want to close the doors and shut the world out, but that's not what Jesus said. We are sent into the world, and if we choose to go, this is what we are going to find. Now, for years, we have allowed folks like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson be the image of Christianity that the world sees, and I have to say, that just makes me sick to my stomach. Their gospel is a gospel of hate very poorly disguised as Christianity. Anything, or anyone, who does not meet their expectations must be from the pits of hell.
But what if...? What if folks started seeing that the Church was actually interested in who they were instead of who we thought they should be? So Kid Rock isn't a saint, big deal. I am curious as to the number of folks who, after hearing this CD, start asking questions of faith. My question is, "Who's going to be there to help them answer those questions?"
Are we comfortable enough with our faith to allow those conversations to take place? It's not going to go away. The world that we have been sent into is not going to get any better...as long as we continue to circle the wagons. It will only begin to turn around, in my opinion and this is just Jamie, when we embrace the fact that Jesus Christ himself sent us into the world and take with us a message of repentence and grace.
So, here's how I'm going to start out my renewed mission in the world..."Hey, I heard that Kid Rock has a new CD out this week. Let's sit down and talk about it. Can you really care about someone if you know what they need and don't do anything about it?"
Peace,(or discomfort at easy answers)