Music has always had a huge affect on me for as long as I can remember. Before, my one last link to God and sanity used to be through the music I listened to. I could destroy myself all I wanted, but I could never bring myself to turn from that one link that told me that somehow, I’d be alright. The promise that I was going to make it through every one of my parents’ fights and everything I face. The belief that God was still there and cared about messed-up me. Then, though I still don’t know just how it happened, I stopped listening to that music, turned to secular music, and fell into the darkest time of my entire life. I had severed my link to God, and closed out the one thing I had never before omitted from my life.
Now, don’t get me wrong, Carrie Underwood, Selena Gomez, 3 Doors Down, and Lifehouse are usually all pretty good for the most part. What these artists are frequently missing though, is the hopeful note that points towards Christ and His mercy; something that I desperately have been in need of since I stopped listening to most . So, finally, realizing how dark and hopeless my life has become, I’ve begun taking a pretty serious look at the music I’m listening to and have, consequently, been mirroring the mood of.
Making a Change…
A couple of weeks ago, I went through my computer’s and began deleting songs that my conscience had already been telling me over and over that I shouldn’t be listening to. As a result, I had to give up some of my favorite songs by , , and other artists. I don’t even really miss those songs much anymore since I have a great deal other awesome music to listen to, but it was surprisingly extremely difficult to delete those songs from my computer and iPod. To be honest, I’m still working on removing some artists from my life. For instance, even though I know how badly affects my mood and general attitude, some days I like nothing more than to simply fade into that “hate the world and everyone in it mood” that seems to fill almost every single song. So I definitely need to still work on that elimination process.
After cleaning out my ipod and computer, I started really thinking about the music I was tuning into on 102.5 The Hit Music Channel on my radio. Sure, I have a soft spot for “DJ Got Us ” and though I haven’t closely examined the lyrics, the song seems clean enough. What about songs like the one where is singing about essentially spending all day, every day, getting drunk though? Sure, the beat is good, but it’s definitely not a good song to be listening to. So although I might not completely nix listening to that station, I’ve decided that I’m not going to listen very often, and that I’ll turn the channel when stuff starts to get positive about what should be negative.
Seeing the Difference…
This past week I’ve been listening to a Christian station that you guys might be familiar with: KLOVE. Now generally, this is not my station of choice; not unless my parents are within hearing range anyway. Mostly, I prefer a local Christian station that’s more upbeat and teen-savvy (if you’ve ever heard of 101.7 FUSE FM, I’m their official stalker Abby, whom they know by name and voice now and are want to talk about at times. They even have a phone call I made to their station two years ago that they frequently play during their fundrives; it’s scary).
Anyway, while I’ve been listening I’ve been realizing just how much I’ve missed listening to Christian music. Over the past few days, despite that they’ve been spending a lot of air-time trying to raise funds for their station, God has used them to teach me and remind me of several things. It’s truly been an incredible experience for me. Through them, God’s reminded me that He can help me break free from the things I struggle with; that I can get right back up even when I’ve fallen so far; that He knows what He’s doing with my life and I can trust Him; that my faith needs to be more than superficial; and dared me to believe that I still have a reason to sing (that’s literal too, but a story for another time). All that in just about three or four short days! Like I said, awesome experience, and one I’d recommend anyone try. I used to laugh at radio stations’ “three song” and “one week” challenges. Now though, I see just how amazing actually trying one of those challenges can be.
My Challenge to You…
Ok, so here’s a challenge that I have for you; it’s a three-parter:
1. Look at the music you’re letting into your life, including radio, CDs, iPods/mp3 players, and friends’ music. What’s the mood of the music, and what’s the affect that it has on your general attitude. Also, what are the songs focusing on, positive things and relationships; or negative views, feeling sorry for yourself, and bad relationships? It’s very important you’re honest with yourself about this part.
2. Next, clean out the negative music that makes you think about thing and feel ways that you shouldn’t. Yeah, it might be hard at first, and you might miss those songs for awhile, but after a week or two, you’ll realize that those songs aren’t a must for the soundtrack of your life. Whether you have to skip those songs on your CD, delete them from your computer or ipod, request your friend play something else, or even break the CD, you need to eliminate the negative vibes they’re sending out to your life.
3. Just spend three days listening to a or just Christian songs. Whether it’s KLOVE, Air1, or another station that’s in your area, it might amaze you how different you may feel or see things, and God may teach you a thing or two in that time too.