THANKS FOR THE LATEST ISSUE-IT FED MY SOUL AND MINISTRY IN A DOZEN WAYS.
MARY PAYNTER Miami, Florida
Thank God for someone with influence who would stand up and say things I’ve been telling kids in my youth group for years. As a general rule, Christian music has turned to fluff, with nothing the kids it’s designed to reach can relate to. As Mr. Rick Lawrence said in his recent article (“Youth Ministry Minute,” “The Trojan Horse,” May/June 2004)…it feeds kids messages that make them feel as though they’re doing something wrong if they aren’t happy 24/7…Kids 1 today are struggling with heavy issues, and they aren’t happy I all the time…Kids today want something real. That’s what their music is about…The music is out there, it’s just being made by lost people who are truly searching for God, not by Christians who’ve found him and want to hide him away from the people who need his love the most.
MICHAEL LAWRENCE Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
I got into the CCM thing at 14.. .After about two years of self-imposed exile, I got a rude wake-up call. CCM had very little to say… So for 10 years of youth ministry, amidst some controversy, I’ve tried to teach students to think biblically and critically about everything, including music. In our student ministry, we’ve used music by Smile Empty Soul, Nirvana, Puddle of Mudd, Eminem, and Metallica to teach students to look at music and its effects on their lives. We’re serious about developing students who walk with Christ in their culture, rather than separate and out of touch with their culture… I know you’re going to get ham- mered for your article. I just wanted you to know that someone out here has thought the same thoughts and come to similar conclusions.
RYAN ABERNATHY Bethany, Oklahoma
I disagreed with Rick’s comment that said kids aren’t “opening the gates” when they hear music from Eminem since they know the things he sings about are wrong. Music and media can be a powerful way to influence beliefs. Pushing sinful ideas can make them more easily acceptable. What was bad before is made “normal” as things are pushed more and more, and the line of what is right and wrong moves.
CHRISTIAN WALTMIRE Brigham City, Utah
Jeremy Camp sings about having a strong faith despite life’s troubles, and Switchfoot sings to a secular crowd saying there’s more to life than what’s seen. How can bands and lyrics like that be a negative influence? To say that “Christian music might be a bigger threat than Eminem” is a bit much.
RYAN ALBERT El Cajon, California
Dr. Youth is one of my favorite columns, but in regard to a note he left at the tag end of one of his endings that “God… likes Hendrix” (“Ask Dr. Youth,” May/June 2004): There’s no doubt that God loved Hendrix, as he loves all of us now, but to picture Jesus wearing a headset listening to “Foxy Lady” and liking it would be blasphemy! Hendrix, no matter how talented he was, never to my knowledge exalted Christ in any of his music or in his lifestyle. I look forward to every issue I get from you guys, but I think some things are better left unprinted.
CHRIS GODDARD Via Internet
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