One size doesn’t fit all…

..And it’s not supposed to.

I think very often people get “homogeny” confused with “unity”. Being alike is not the same as being unified, and being too alike can actually deter real unity. Certain strengths come with certain weaknesses, and this being the case, we desperately need one another to compliment each other.

I think what happens often in every kind of music, but that is certainly more obvious in “worship” arenas, is that there is a pressure to try to make a song or experience so palatable to every kind of person that we end up striping it of any real personality. So the song becomes a little interesting to everyone but isn’t very interesting to anyone.

(And yes, once again what we sing/how we worship has to mean something to us. This is because God wants an expression of authenticity. He’s interested in us not just mindless religious activity.)

So, if a song doesn’t work across the board in every stream of Christendom, it doesn’t negate the validity of a worship song.

WE’RE NOT ALL NECASARILLY SUPPOSED TO SING THE SAME SONGS!

And furthermore, where does this one size fits all, no child left behind, least common denominator, Christianity come from? For a group of people who are largely made up of western capitalists it seems to be a bit of a communist mindset. Am I crazy? (btw nothing against capitalists or communists. I prefer to stay light years away from politics in this blog.)

The fact is the whole church only agrees on about 2 things tops. And even the top guys in each stream disagree about the details. So if you want to reach the entire Christian world you are restricted to writing about those two topics and often in the blandest of terms. Even then, you’re going to lose that whole segment of people that only like things that other people don’t like.

You just can’t please everyone, and you’re not supposed to. What you are supposed to do is serve the people you’ve been given with every fiber of you’re being.

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15 comments
  1. Andy said:

    "For a group of people who are largely made up of western capitalists it seems to be a bit of a communist mindset."Or, likely, the desire to make worship songs palatable to the greatest variety of people is driven by the capitalistic motivation to increase the size of your 'market'.

  2. ALFIE said:

    i wish everyone could share this same insight! i have thoroughly enjoyed the way you've broken the "worship" mold.

  3. no you're totally right. i was discussing something similar to this today, and the fact is that as a western society, we cannot implement a global standard. this applies to worship, development, social justice, and so much more.

  4. The best thing about worship is when words that come straight from God give you chill bumps. Not everyone can have chill bumps at the same time.

  5. Richard said:

    Incredible insight. I lead in two churches, for two completely different groups of people, and I have maybe two songs that I sing in both places.

  6. Dear John Mark, I have to say that you are one of the few who is truly awakened… please please consider writing a book!

  7. Jkurtz said:

    Well I'm glad that you believe that a person should authentically practice their faith in all aspects.What you wrote about authenticity gets me thinking though. See the problem I'm thinking about is, the church is going to produce Christians that cannot necessarily be authentic because of the way the modern-day church is structured. Thousands of people sit passively in pews and listen to one guy speak, and then go on about their day. These thousands of people, though they all have different strengths and weaknesses, and different things they could add to the body of Christ, oftentimes do not get to add any of their own character to the church because they do not have the correct education, or have not gone through the correct sacraments, etc. etc. and yaddeeyaddaleeyada.When I objectively observe modern Christianity, it seems a far cry from where it's supposed to be. If you actually read back into church history you'll find that over half of the practices we use in the church today (including the concept of the pastor,) stem from pagan religions. This for me… limits the productivity of the church. Why should one man make many of the key decisions for the church? Shouldn't the Holy spirit be leading the members of the body into action rather than the delegations of the pastor? Did God want it this way? On the plus side, music and worship has not been lost to this conundrum. There is FREEDOM of expression for the Holy spirit through the music and the words, freedom to be authentic with God for the human, to praise him and meditate on him.BTW: Awesome, authentic, inspirational music brother. Keep it up. I pray songs I write can touch people the way yours do.

  8. Laura said:

    Andy: so true. labels only agree to produce songs that have the greatest ability to sell, so the unsuspecting masses are fed a small variety diet, and consequently their health suffers.

  9. totally agree. thanks for having the balls to speak the truth. comforts my heart.

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