So, I wrote this worship song a couple of weeks ago called "Untamed God." It was one of those songs that came fairly quickly. And I felt really good about it. It is an aspect of His character that I feel God has been revealing to me recently. Though the song is darker in tone musically and it uses some pictures that we don't typically hear in modern worship music I feel very good about it Biblically. It is very supportable scripturally even though it paints a different picture in worship than we are used to.
I played it in both our boomer and our emergent services with what I thought was a largely positive response. My worship team was very engaged with it. The aftermath was quite a bit different for both groups, however.
Our emergent group pretty much didn't bat an eye at the song. And most of the feedback I got from the younger ones was good. But, when I started to get feedback from our older crowd, I was surprised at how strongly some of them responded. And not in a good way.
It seems that some of the word pictures I used to depict the more dangerous aspects of God's character were very disconcerting for some to the point where I was asked not to play it again. It's one thing not to like a song. It's quite another to be accused of heresy.
I have no problem when people don't like something musically. But, I felt a little blindsided by how polarizing this situation was. And I have never had a song banned from a service before! Pretty exciting!
The difference in world views and cultural langauge are much more clear to me from this experience. Just as the word "gay" has changed dramatically in the past 50 years there is much of our common verbage that has changed to varying degrees over the last few decades. Words like "wild," "untamed" and "mystery" can connote very different reactions from different generations. When you couple that with the hugely shifting dominant world views in our generation you can get a bigger "miss" in communicating than you ever thought. It seems as if we are all speaking english on the surface. But, at the end of the day we are often unaware of how much we are misunderstanding each other.
More on langauage next time. I am part of an emerging church dialogue team that has revealed how great this communication "miss" really is. I was more than just a little stunned!
Here are the words to that song just in case you were wondering!
From the greatest depths of Your cold mystery
To the raging fire of Your stars
From the brutal glory of Your highest peaks
To the secret jungles, there You are
Your touch, it brings me to my knees
Your Word dividing heart and soul
Your gaze pierces to the heart of me
Your voice is calling me home
My wild, untamed, magnificent God
You’re greater than the greatest thoughts of men
My wild, untamed, mysterious Maker
More powerful than I can comprehend
You are too big for my story
Make me alive in Yours (repeat)
Words and music by Troy Kennedy
Ilium Music Copyright 2005