March 25, 2010

A Hole In My Soul

If you know me at all, then you know how much I LOVE music.I grew up around music, I live music, I breathe music, I play music every chance I get.

Apart from the sheer joy that music brings in it’s own right, I love to listen to what it tells me of what our world thinks and believes, about life, about relationships, and for some, their belief-unbelief in things eternal.

They say music can be a ‘window into one’s soul’, and for many artists I have found that to be profoundly true. Therefore, it would not be unusual to find the likes of Pink, Robbie Williams, Lily Allen, The Veronicas, or Killing Heidi on my iPod. For they represent the confused and rudderless voices of this generation, their lyrics unmasking the timeless spiritual vacuum that exists in us all without God.

I don’t expect secular music to say Christian things, to hold Christian truths, or promote Christian values. It is not Christian. And, although I may not always like what it says, I’m not shocked, offended or affronted when it doesn’t, but rather, pleasantly surprised if it does.

Instead, I listen out for what it may have to teach me, where, for a moment I become its student, reflecting on its message.

I listen for what a song may have to teach me about…
1.Potential entry points of the gospel into an unbelieving culture.
2.What it unveils of the ways in which our culture has made its own entry points, distorting, corrupting, or subtly undermining Biblical truths for believers.

A case in point is the song Feel”  by Robbie Williams…
“Come on hold my hand, I wanna contact the living.
Not sure I understand, this role I’ve been given.
I sit and talk to God
And he just laughs at my plans,
My head speaks a language, I don’t understand.

I just wanna feel real love, feel the home that I live in.
‘cause I got too much life, running through my veins, going to waste.

I don’t wanna die, but I aint keen on living either…
That’s why I keep on running.

I need to feel, real love, and a life ever after
I cannot get enough.

There’s a hole in my soul,
You can see it in my face,
..It’s a real big place”.

Well, if that’s not the raw core of the human condition crying out to be heard then I don’t know what is!

But his words should come as no surprise for those of us who have come to know Christ, for we recognize that those who don’t yet know him are spiritually blind, they’re lost, empty, living without any hope in the world, just as we once were (Eph 2:12, Tit 3:3).

The Bible cogently reminds us, that it is possible to be physically alive but spiritually dead, and like Robbie Williams, we can have an enormous sense of that, not just spiritually, but emotionally as well (Eph 2:2-3, Rom 1:21-25).

The stark reality portrayed here, is that we engage on a spiritual battlefield of cosmic proportions, in which Satan is masterfully at work, where the hearts and minds of men and women are being captured by the darkness of this age. Where “the god of this age is blinding the minds of unbelievers, so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ” (2Cor 4:4).

As a result, men and women alike, are left groping and clambering, senselessly filling that emotional and spiritual void with everything except Christ, and the lyrics of the likes of Robbie William’s “Feel are merely a heartfelt expression of that devastating truth.

Our first gospel entry point therefore, is to acknowledge that this “hole in my soul”, this drive to “feel real love, feel the home that I live in”, this emotional and spiritual vacuum he describes, is in fact echoed by the words of God himself in Scripture. It’s no delusion, no lapse of judgment, no moment of weakness in the human psyche, but a percipient spiritual truth.

A second gospel entry point is of course, the glorious promise of the gospel itself:

Through the precious blood of Christ we can, once and for all, be released and redeemed from this ‘empty way of life’  (2Pet 1:18-19).
That Christ is the only one who can truly quench our spiritual thirst (Jn 4:13-14).
That all, without exception, need to be brought back to life. Rather than the vacuous experience of “life, running through (our) veins, going to waste”, Christ has come, that we might have life, and have it to the full.
Only in Christ can we know and experience the new life, full life, eternal life that we desperately long for, that in fact, we were created for! (Jn 10:10).

So, as the voices of this lost generation blare through our iPods, radios, CD’s and mp3’s, what will our Christian voice have to echo in reply?
And echo it must…
For there’s a hole in their soul,
                Can’t you see it in their face?
                                         …It’s a real big place…

  © Sarie King: please do not use without permission.


Jim Ramsay said...

Hi Sarie
I like the blog. Keep it up. I've used 'Feel' in some talks - it's good. It's interesting to see how perceptive and honest some song writers really are. I guess they want to produce material that sells but it won't sell if it doesn't resonate, in some way, with their fans.
It's for that reason that one of my favourite (preacher's) quotes is the following by Ben Folds Five. Their song ‘Evaporated’ expresses 'lostness' well.

What I’ve kept with me and what I’ve thrown away
And where the hell I’ve ended up on this glary random day,
Were the things I really cared about just left along the way
For being too pent up and proud?
Woke up way too late, feeling hung over and old
And the sun was shining bright - And I walked barefoot down the road.
Started thinking about my old man
Seems that all men want to get into a car and go – anywhere
Here I stand, sad and free. I can’t cry, I can’t see
What have I done? Oh God, what have I done?

It sounds like the younger son in the Luke 15 parable to me.

Looking forward to your next incursion into culture

Many thanks


Ros said...

Yeah, Robbie's pretty conflicted.. in other songs too. Definitely interesting. Like reading your thoughts and insight.

Love your blog. Look forward to reading more entries.

Gav Perkins said...

Nice start!

Random Dylan quote to support your thesis...

"In a soldier's stance, I aimed my hand
At the mongrel dogs who teach
Fearing not that I'd become my enemy
In the instant that I preach
My existence led by confusion boats
Mutiny from stern to bow
Ah, but I was so much older then
I'm younger than that now."

Bob Dylan - My Back Pages

Michael Schaefer said...

Cool blog Sarie - helpful education and illustration for us preachers. Thanks.

Hilary Retief said...

Keep going Sar - You are up there with DRG Love HILS

Gordon T Dugan said...

Great blog Sarie.

Anne Milton said...

I look forward to reading more. It made my heart ache for the lost - some of them too close to home!

Doug McIntyre said...

Way to go!

Friend from the States said...

Hi Sarie,
Great blog. I admire your connection to music, movies, beauty, photography and more. Would like to send you some things I think you might like. Can I contact you directly?

Sarie King said...

Hi friend from the States!
Thank you for your comments. Yes, by all means send them through. Are you able to do it through posting here or through msg on fb?

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