First the Blade
© 2019 by Larry Nevenhoven
Building Mustard-Seed Faith (m)
It dawned on me one day: I’m tired of Christian music. Every Christian song sounded like a spin-off of Shout to the Lord. I was bored with the same-o, same-o music.
Thus, when I drove my truck, I listened to country music.
The CD’s I listened to were mainly golden oldies sung by Johnny Cash, Glenn Campbell, Don Williams and others. Most were even Christians. Their music seemed quite tame compared to many of the newer artists.
Yet at the same time I began listening to country music, I started having nostalgic thoughts and dreams about my high school and college years. An overwhelming collage of thoughts invaded my mind about girls I dated, baseball games, football, 4-H, school subjects and more.
I found myself wondering about the “what-if’s” and the “if-only’s” of my earlier years. I even compared those choices with the realities in my life at the present. Focusing on prayer or reading the Bible became a battle for me.
I sought the Lord about my problem.
The Lord eventually showed me the music I listened to had hooks into my past. When I listened to the music, it drew me back into that time period and what I was doing at the time. I also felt the Lord showed me all popular music has some sort of hook in it, which grabs our thoughts. That’s why the music is so popular.
What I then had to do was give up listening to a steady diet of country music. I changed my MP3 player so that it had 85% Classical music, 10% Christian, and 5% country and other music.
Just to put my music listening into its proper perspective: I never listen to music outside of driving a vehicle. I like quiet. This is my personal preference, okay?
Then, there was the issue of talk radio.
During the 2004 and 2008 elections, I listened to conservative talk radio hosts when I drove a vehicle. Talk radio is a great alternative for understanding today’s political issues for most people as compared to the major media outlets. But this was not true for me.
I am more of a black and white, right or wrong type of person who also struggles with judgmental and critical attitudes. Listening to talk radio caused me to be upset with Christians who did not agree with me on political issues. I was angry with them.
The Lord was not lenient with me on this listening problem. I now seldom ever listen to talk radio or any TV news programs, which might have editorial comments as a part of their regular show.
As far as TV goes, I hardly ever watch regular TV shows. The rare exceptions are a few sporting events. I do like movies, but I prefer the old ones, such as African Queen, Quiet Man, Hoosiers, and North by Northwest.
There are, perhaps, a great many kinds of languages [voices] in the world, and no kind is without meaning. (1 Corinthians 14: 10)
Now this is what I’ve have to do in my life to cut back on voices so I can more readily hear the voice of Jesus, who is the author and perfecter of faith.
What about the work place and other environments I happen upon in my travels?
I can only control my personal choices, and not what others prefer, so I rely on the Lord’s grace and His mercy in those situations.
Do I believe everyone should follow my example?
If you want to walk at your highest level of faith, you will have to make some hearing choices. But, you need to ask the Lord what voices you need to get rid of. Don’t just do what I did, okay? It may take time to sort through the voices in your life but it will be worth it.
Then He said to them, “Take heed what you hear… (Mark 4:24)
(Continued…but if you want to read all of the parts to date, you can go here.)