Last sunday while I was waiting for the next service to begin in church I heard Erica campbell’s song “I luh God” playing from the sound system and I remembered how she was criticised for doing that song which I feel is not bad at all. Other christian rap artists have received backlash for doing styles that the CHH (Christian Hip Hop) community considered to be un-Godly too. Over here in Nigeria a christian rapper was complaining about how his guys criticised him for doing a song they believed was a sellout because he did a song in line with the current trend of music.
Now most of the people that started Christian Rap music over here experienced a lot of persecution from the church. I remember a certain guy’s story of how he was on stage at an orthodox church and one of elders got furious, went outside and the elder shut down the generator powering the entire church! That was really crazy! Now before you start sharing your own stories of persecution I want you to take a moment and remember the last time you heard a song or a particular style or sound of hip hop and you said to yourself “this should never be used by christians” I tell you the truth, you are not different from that zealous elder! It’s just that you might chose to express yourself differently.
The problem I have is, the same people that were persecuted for doing something different not too long ago are now the persecutors of today within the CHH community. Just because a certain style or sound does not appeal to you,does not make it un-Godly! Who are you to decided what can be used or not?(acts 10:13-15). We have entangled ourselves in this battle of genre and style just like our fathers did and until this struggle within us is resolved, our take over in the industry is still far ahead. Because you can’t be the one bringing a new message and you are still the same person arguing about style and sound! Which one are we going to follow?.
Recently I was discussing with a 14yr old girl and I asked her which kind of music she listens to and she said hip hop, so I asked her to play some of her favourite songs for me. She played these songs that were suppose to be rap songs only that I could not understand what this guy’s were saying but if you saw her expression you will know that these songs meant a lot to her. I tried to get her to listen to some of the songs by Lecrae and other CHH guys but she was not feeling that,rather she ended up teaching me how to “nea nea”(wink).
After my encounter with that teenager it became clear to me that CHH has been neglecting a certain percentage of the population. We have actually isolated some people like this my young friend just because their style or taste in music differs from what we are used to and we have harshly persecuted anyone who dares to reach out to them. We forget that what we call real hip hop today was not what it used to be, hip hop as a culture has continued to evolve over the years from generation to generation.
My dad once asked me this question” are you guys trying to reach the hip hop community with the message of christ, or are you focused on pushing the hip hop culture into the church?” we have a lot of people pushing the hip hop agenda and no lives have been changed by that. Although I advocate for artistic excellence and encourage everyone to strive towards perfection in their creative journey, but we must not lose our focus from mission. I do not know the next style or sound of hip hop that will be introduced in the future,but I believe that we will continue to have christians representing at every point. I only pray that we do not miss the opportunity to reach out to a group of people who also need the Gospel just because we are too stubborn to step out of our comfort zone.
I will like to hear your views at the comment session guys
ARTICLE FROM Churchmind.wordpress.com as Written by Koch316