Have you ever heard a student say, “I don’t care about the lyrics, I just like it for the beat.” I know I have. It’s a problem this generation is so prone to. We hear all about all the false teachers in the Bible, Peter warns against them, the book of Jude warns against them, Timothy warns against them. Where is our warning?
One of the greatest of all false teachers these days is music. While our students like it for the beat, they aren’t immune to the lyrics. With hardly anything in their minds fixed in stone, the influence of music is hard to deny. According to Pediatrics, Official Journal of The American Academy of Pediatrics, there is significant research showing negative effects of degrading lyrics in youth. There is significant data that exposure to music promoting sexual exploits, drug use, or other harmful behaviors cause an increase in the related behavior. With the data backing up the fact that lyrics affect behavior, how much behavior is being influence by the “popular” artists of the day?
I heard a Ke$ha song on the radio the other day and the lyrics went like this, “I hear your heart beat to the beat of the drums, Oh what a, shame that you came here with someone, So while you’re here in my arms, Let’s make the most of the night like we’re gonna die young.” In short, she’s saying it doesn’t matter that you have someone you’re committed to, what matters is you get to have some fun before you die. I was in a restaurant one day and as I was walking into the bathroom a little girl and her mom were walking out of the adjacent restroom; I heard the little girl, who couldn’t have been older than 7, singing Rhianna’s song S&M, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but whips and chains excite me.” At what point do we need to step in and tell a mother she shouldn’t let he child sing that song? It doesn’t matter if she doesn’t understand the song; it still has an impact on her. I don’t have kids of my own, but I have ones at youth group who are old enough to realize what the lyrics mean and I pray so hard that they would realize the affect it has on them.
A challenge I have recently taken up was put out by K-Love. It’s the 30-day Christian music only challenge (http://www.klove.com/ministry/30-day.aspx). What influence do we want to have on our students? Is your music library a positive motivator for the Kingdom? How can we convince our youth, that what they listen to affects how they act?
I’m asking that you take the 30-day challenge and watch it have an impact on your life.
Travis Lodes is the Student Ministries Intern at Cherry Creek Presbyterian Church in Englewood, CO. Feel free to leave comments or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.