Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Supporting Ministries - Christian Bands

Those 2 words - "Christian Band" seem to spark different mental images for different people. For me it is a refreshing sound to my ears, that Christians would form a band with the sole purpose of making music that glorifies God.

There are some other reactions as well, and I am also guilty of having mixed feelings when I hear those 2 words used together. I guess you could label me as bi-polar when it comes to Christian Bands, but more broadly Contemporary Christian Music as a whole. If you have read any of my other posts then you probably know that music is a topic that I discuss frequently. I've realized why lately as I have made posts on Facebook with the heading "Be careful what you consume" for the posts.

The mentality behind being careful what we consume sprung forth over 5 years ago as I wrote about it in this posting - The Purity Of What We Consume. Over the past 5 years God has matured this thought path in me and usually my examples show up frequently when I have conversations with other people. The path started at my conversion, which is when God took all of the secular music from me, quite miraculously. I loved the music of the world, I always had, especially after being introduced to my particularly favorite flavor/ style at church camp, of all places. The genre had bands like Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath, Dio, Def Leppard, Motley Crue and a whole plethora of other bands ranging from hair bands to grunge to the predecessors of death metal. I also delved into the early hardcore rap with NWA, Ice T and others. I also saw nothing wrong with this music, even though I professed to be a Christian since I was 8 years old and made excuses that I "just listened to the music" and that "the lyrics have no affect on me". Wrong on both accounts.

When I was first truly converted God replaced my love for the world's music with a desire for God centered music. I started gobbling up anything that had the label of "Christian" on it. Not too long afterwards God began working on me once again. He started opening up the "Christian bands" music and I saw that most had the same lyrics, the same focus as the world's music. So, once again I began to shed artists that were not truly glorifying God. I will not list the bands and artists in this post, but feel free to search through my blog as I'm sure you will run across several posts that address the topic.

Music affects us and we usually don't even realize it. Just take a day and listen to the soundtrack of that day. Pay attention to the places you go and the music that is being played. Listen carefully to the soundtrack in the TV programs and movies that you watch. Music is used everywhere to illicit emotions from cheerful in a grocery store to a pounding score in an action movie that quickens your pulse rate. Music does affect you more than you probably realize. Likewise a hymn or contemporary Christian song can increase focus on God too. Music is a great gift from God to us and He really desires us to glorify Him through it. We are even commanded to sing praise TO THE LORD (Psalm 30:4). As a matter of fact - What are psalms? They are songs.

God has developed a desire in me that the music I listen to praise and honor Him. I still like the crunching, distortion laden guitars and pounding bass drums, but I also love the smooth sounds of Southern Gospel. I have a varied taste in music, but the one constant is that "It must glorify God". But it goes beyond the veneer, because the bands have an agenda too and some in CCM have an agenda contrary to pointing to God, even though they may mention His Name every now and then. I heavily suggest checking out the theology behind the artists you listen to. As we have learned recently with the Gungor flap, which I wrote about yeaterday, not everyone believes the orthodox view of Scripture or of Christ, for that matter (ie Philips, Craig and Dean). So be very careful and be very diligent to test your music choices to the Bible (1 Thessalonians 5:21).

I have said all of this to point you, whoever God brings to this post and who is still reading, to point you to one of the most Biblical and God honoring bands that I know of - Attalus. I was first introduced to Attalus by a simple post from Matt Papa , another Godly focused Christian artist. Papa just linked to Attalus' video for "Broken Cisterns" and I was instantly hooked and quickly snatched up all of the musical offerings that I could find from this band. Attalus grew to be my favorite band very quickly. I played their songs constantly and I sang praises to the Lord using the soundtrack that God had graced me with.

I have prayed for these brothers, I have supported these brothers in anyway that I have been able to. The brothers that make up this band seek to glorify God through their music, which is how it should be, but sadly not how it always is. I ask that you, also, lend your support to this God honoring band as they are still in the production process of releasing a new CD, "Into The Sea".

You can become a partner with them in their ministry by taking advantage of the several "perks" at Indiegogo ranging from digital downloads to custom built guitar pedals to participating in "gang vocals" for the new CD. If the genre or style of their music doesn't suit your personal tastes you can still simply make a donation as well. Most of all pray for these brothers through this process. Making a CD and having shows is very labor intensive. They need God to sustain them and keep them focused on Christ and His glory.

So please partner with Attalus from this point forward. Listen to their music. Sing praises t God while listening to their music. Contact them and let them know that you are praying for them. Choose a perk at Indiegogo and get the remainder of the process funded for the CD. Be the Body and support the Body, in whatever way God leads you.

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