Round Up That Matters

I found a coupled of great articles the last few days that I wanted to share, so here they are:

Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy — This really gives a great overview of how Generation Y views themselves and why they are unhappy. They all believe that they are special and the rest of the world just fails to see it. Their unhappiness is actually rooted in their delusional expectations from life. I see this in my own life as well. Because our parents did so well, we expect that we should do just as well. It’s worth the read.

Why Men Have Stopped Singing in Church — Another well written article by Dave Murrow on the reason men have stopped singing in church. Basically the church has returned to the 14th Century model of worship, where the professionals lead and sing, and the congregation just stands and watches.

At first, churches simply projected the songs everyone knew – hymns and a few simple praise songs that had come out of the Jesus Movement. People sang robustly.

But that began to change about three years ago. Worship leaders brought in new songs each week. They drew from the radio, the Internet, and Worship conferences. Some began composing their own songs, performing them during worship, and selling them on CD after church.

Years ago, worship leaders used to prepare their flocks when introducing a new song. “We’re going to do a new song for you now. We’ll go through it twice, and then we invite you to join in.”

That kind of coaching is rare today. Songs get switched out so frequently today that it’s impossible to learn them. People can’t sing songs they’ve never heard. And with no musical notes to follow, how is a person supposed to pick up the tune?

And so the church has returned to the 14th century. Worshippers stand mute as professional-caliber musicians play complex instruments, and sing in an obscure language. Martin Luther is turning over in his grave.

The sad reality is that we know that many churches are adopting the views and practices in order to attract unbelievers. The unbelievers do come, and some of them are saved. But the larger reality is that the true believers are the ones being pushed aside and are given fewer venues in which to worship our King. We don’t want rock bands, we want songs we can sing together. We don’t want the latest, we want that which is actually true. We don’t want the prettiest, we want that which is actually singable. We don’t want the barroom, many of us left the bars because we know how empty that life is. We want true worship that is actually rooted in spirit and in truth. We are tired of churches that use that phrase just to bandy about new ideas, new songs, new, new, new… and losing out on a gospel that has nothing new to it. If we must “invent” reasons for people to come to a church, then is there really anything there that is truth?

Criticism Toward Manziel Says More About Critics Than About Johnny Football — An excellent piece showing how hypocritical the critics of Manziel actually are. Most of them expect him to be a choir boy and not a 20-year-old college kid, and most of them have no room to actually talk. As Thomas McKenna writes:

What’s interesting about the life and times of Johnny Football is how thoroughly he upends every cliche that is heretofore accepted when it comes to the relationship a football quarterback is supposed to have between his persona and performance. Melding sublime talent with a streak of brashness is expected, if not encouraged, in skill positions like wide receiver (see: Moss, Randy..Owens, Terrell..Johnson, Keyshawn), but when a QB exhibits that dichotomy the sports media’s loudest and most influential (read: worst) mouthpieces immediately and relentlessly pounce on him. It’s why a google search of “Jay+Cutler+criticism” yields over 170,000 results. Moreover, an irreverent persona and a predilection for frat parties, hormonal growing pains, and social media pratfalls (something we’ve seemed to pretend hundreds of thousands of college kids don’t experience each year in their own lives, be it at College Station or elsewhere) is supposed to be a heroic athlete’s ‘tragic flaw.’ It’s why there are still lunatics out there demanding a starting NFL gig for Tim Tebow. Unyielding moral fervor and an android-like aversion to anything fun or festive is supposedly metonymical with a quarterback’s success. That was the persistent, stupid train of thought (Jessica Simpson was once responsible for all of Tony Romo’s on-field mishaps, remember?!) — but now Manziel has proven it entirely false. He’s got a Heisman, a Cotton Bowl victory, and a prominent ranking again this year (and a win yesterday that was there for the taking had the defense pulled out one more stop in the second half), all while enjoying the spoils that come with those successes. Manziel is proving that the classic “distractions” facing every young athlete aren’t even really distractions at all–his blistering, incomparable talent continues to flourish regardless. And that drives the older guard in the sports media crazy. And Manziel operates in open defiance of both theirs and the NCAA machine’s stolidness. How can you not like Johnny Football when he so manifestly makes all the right people angry?

Watching this kid play football is a gift, rejecting that fact in favor of cutting him down with constant criticism says a whole lot more about you and your disposition than it does about Manziel’s apparent shortcomings.

McKenna does a good job of giving examples concerning they hypocritical critics of Manziel, the most egregious is Mark May, who was also one who said A&M would be destroyed in the SEC. But Mark gets upset because Johnny is bringing disgrace to the game. Never mind that May got thrown in jail during his college days as well as his days in the NFL.

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Gig ‘Em — By t.u. loving Jane Slater who went to the game between A&M and Alabama on Saturday. She came away with a different view of things. I know that my Aggies did lose in an excellent game on Saturday, but I agree with Slater, our situation is a lot better than what is going on in Austin right now. Our coach said after the loss that it is only one game and we can still play for a BCS Bowl Game. t.u.’s coach told his players that with Kansas State, they can start over. Sad.

Slater writes:

I hate the word “swagger” but there is no other way to describe it. Johnny Manziel has the elusive “it” factor that propels a guy with talent into a legend.

The school president, former athletes on the field, alums and celebrities all make the money sign that’s now become the Johnny sign. He’s turned something illicit into something en vogue.

Perhaps more remarkable though is his talent in action.

I was able to watch his escapability and the fearlessness in action. I saw him put coach Saban on notice early. Unfortunately his defense couldn’t do the same.

Johnny Football put on a show at Kyle Field Saturday helping the team score 42 points and accounting for 464 rushing yards. The 562 total yards was the 2nd most in his career and second most in SEC.

After seeing his performance, I now understand why the fans look the other way when it comes to the off field stuff because its impossible to when he graces the football field. If Alabama thought they figured Johnny Manziel out after a year of watching film they didn’t and that’s what makes Manziel scary. He’s that good!

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4 thoughts on “Round Up That Matters

  1. Great points on the worship songs. I just had that conversation with our worship leader yesterday. I’ve endured the song issues, but when they started putting close-ups of the praise band on the Jumbotron it was too much. Instead of the lyrics being shown over a background of waves or something, we now see various close-ups of the singers and band (and even the instruments, like the guitar). Apparently some people like all the stimulation, but my wife and I found it completely distracting.

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    1. That is downright hero worship! That, I think, is the real issue. These musicians are trying to become the main thing instead of letting God be front and center. This has always been the case, but with that, it is on display.

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      1. It wasn’t the musicians’ idea. The worship leader just likes to try different things. He said some people like it. I think it is awful and we can’t worship there as long as they do that. It is far too distracting.

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      2. Neil, that is the problem, the worship leader likes to try different things. That shows the lack of understanding about worship that should be a real problem. God doesn’t want us worshipping Him with our own schemes and imaginations. Remember Abihu and Nadab in Leviticus 10? They were trying “different” things and got scorched. This shows a clear lack of reverence and awe on the part of the worship leader. Worship is not a variety show… it is entering into the presence of a holy and just God, with fear, reverence, and awe. I’m not getting on to you, but that is a real problem with worship leaders today. As for the fact that “some people like all the stimulation” this also wreaks of the entertainment mentality that governs so much worship. I think with the golden calf, they worshipped according to what the people wanted. That didn’t turn out very well either.

        OK, you’ve go me going… 🙂

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