Wednesday, April 27, 2005

A Lament

So, I'm about to incriminate myself with my words, because other people who disagree are sure to read this as soon as I post it. Thus disclaimed, moving on...

Last night was one of those nights when the war against frustration loses ground on every front. Kat and I were met with disappointment about an apartment we wanted to rent. A good friend who was going to be at my wedding will be unable to come, her family benevolently finalized her absence - and I felt slightly abandoned by that (perhaps it was my low self-esteem rearing its weeping head). Amongst a few other things which I cannot remember now (and that's a good thing), I went to one of the worst concerts of my life. I find that difficult to say, because my friends were part of it. To their credit, they are better people than that concert reveals, but I was quite frustrated with the whole thing, because they were choir members trying to sing in a band. You simply can't do that. You can't act like a choir and make a band work. In a choir, you can hate the person across the room and it won't make any difference, since you're following a conductor and a pianist. In a band, you must be in accord with everyone, or it won't gel - and it will show in the music. I was frustrated, because the mentality of the music department pervaded the night - dry and mechanical. There were two people among about ten that enjoyed what they were doing. The rest may or may not have done well at hiding the fact that it was a job to them. I was frustrated, because microphone training and a good mix were all but non-existent. I was frustrated, because it was a packaged and priced product masquerading as art, and masquerading in Jesus name. I wanted to throttle them all by the shoulders and shout in their faces, "DO YOU KNOW LOVE?! DO YOU KNOW THE MAKER AND LOVER OF ALL THINGS?!" The product presented wore salvation on its sleeve and wore it badly to boot, using such words as "invoke the spirit of God" (as if such a thing could be done by a man, and as if God's spirit was a thing occasionally present in the air and not everlastingly in the hearts of men whom he has taken), and doing such things as praying to be heard by men and speaking rehearsed speeches as genuine communication between the performers and the audience.

To my friends who did what they were supposed to do and who read this, you are wonderful people, made worthy of the work in the Kingdom of God to which you have been and will be called. I love you, and forgive me any hurt I may have caused you with these words. Instead of taking them as offense, please strive to take my criticism as a point of reference for building the band you are striving to be. Understand that I want you to believe the words you preach, and that I want you to know Love before you know all other things, as I want for myself. I love you.

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