CHRIST IN CULTURE
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WORSHIP LEADER UNDER FIRE

  • By Cara Buckley
  • 27 Jul, 2015
Can a musician play different kinds of music?
My husband is a man who wears many hats. This is something I will not deny. He is a computer technician, a talented musician, an enthusiastic reader, and a man with the potential to give Jeopardy a run for its money if given the opportunity. Above all, he is a man of God. I would not have married him otherwise.
Very recently, however, a question has arisen whether the two musical worlds clash. On one hand, he is a member and former co-leader of our church’s worship band. On the other hand, he is the leader of an Irish folk band, Mayde In Ireland, the #1 folk act in the Antelope Valley and comprised of all Christian members.
Can one justify a life of worship and sing Irish songs on the side?
Does it matter?
If it did, that is up to the church’s authorities to confront my husband. Instead, most of the congregation happily express their love and support for Mayde In Ireland.
This is not the first time the question of whether or not singing Irish folk songs is too contradictory to justify a walk with God. The possibility weighs heavily on him, and he has the answer. If God did present him with a choice between the two worlds, he would give up Mayde in Ireland in a heartbeat.
Who has the authority to pass judgement on my husband for his outreach to the community?
One person thinks she does. This morning greeted both my husband and the Mayde in Ireland drummer with a hateful (and poorly written) email attempting to shame the band for their choice of lyrics and advertising. She goes on demanding he reconsider… everything in his life (to say the least) and threatening never to attend another show again. Of course, this woman had rarely attended our shows in the first place, so that comes as no threat at all.
One thing she wrote stuck out to me like a sore thumb.
It was the final sentence: “PLEASE reconsider what you do and say in the name of Jesus Christ.”
Take a look in the mirror, madam.
First of all, you have a notorious reputation for attempting to shame every leader in our church, so it comes as no surprise that you chose to assault my husband’s character next. In fact, I’m surprised you took so long. Just know, your reputation gives you no standing whatsoever. Get a new hobby.
Secondly, how could you possibly understand the band’s spirit if you rarely see us? My husband takes great care in choosing the songs in the playlist. These songs are filled with rich cultural history of Ireland and the pain the people suffered. Unless you have examined the lyrics to every song in the playlist, you have absolutely no business accusing us of impropriety.
In your ridiculous habit of listing Bible verses, all to serve your purpose, show me one, JUST ONE, where Christ would use hateful, shaming language against anyone he encountered, believer or unbeliever. Show me one verse where Christ judged. Show me one where He showed anything but love, dignity, and respect for every single soul he encountered.
Let me show you a Bible verse or two:
Romans 2:1: “You may think you can condemn such people, but you are just as bad, and you have no excuse! When you say they are wicked and should be punished, you are condemning yourself, for you who judge others do these very same things.”
OR
Matthew 7:3-5: “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend. ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.”
Anyone who is truly interested in my husband’s intention with Mayde In Ireland would know that he has effectively built bridges in this community. Many bridges. Bridges you couldn’t hope to build as long as you judge continue to judge others so severely.
Those same people you spew as “ungodly”, “atheists”, and “Christ-haters” share a rapport with Mayde In Ireland, because they are treated with the dignity and respect that all HUMAN BEINGS deserve. How many souls have you saved treating people the way you do? How many souls could you hope to save in light of your judgement toward them?
Those "ungodly, atheistic Christ-haters" are people with feelings, also created in God’s image. Loved and sought after by Him. How can they ever learn God’s love as long as you treat them in such a way? Tell me how.
Ephesians 4:29: “Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.”
My husband and I, just as all Christians should, view all people as equals. Equal in deserving respect, openness, love, and dignity. We hope one day to help them hear the Christian message without assuming we are the awful stereotypes of our so-called fellow believers. The kind of believers that would push them away from the message with judgment, shame, and hate. That would indeed be the opposite of our calling.
Who are you, madam, to question him? To question any of us? To question our mission?
You have accomplished only one thing today. Any hopes of bringing the drummer back into attendance are GONE. Any hopes of Mayde In Ireland returning to perform at church events are GONE. Worst of all, Randy and I are all the closer to walking out the church’s doors and never coming back.
I hope you’re pleased with yourself. Because nobody else is.

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