Shock and Awe

I don’t want to draw any conclusions or parallels that aren’t there, I just had a thought after watching bits and pieces of the Grammy’s last night.

It seems that performers are doing anything they can to gain attention.  Wearing meat suits, coming in eggs, bringing a sceptor, staging an exorcism, having a double singing part of your song only to have everything black out and you’re on a platform looking like you’re wearing a smurf weave, riding onto a football field with a mess of Roman soldiers escorting you, getting everyone in choir robes, flipping the bird, who knows what.

Twitter blew up with how creepy, strange, unnecessary, and untalented Nicki Minaj’s performance of Roman Holiday was, and after watching it online today, I have to agree.

Compare that to Adele.  Adele stood in place on stage, sporting a black dress, and sang beautifully.  The entire audience rose to their feet in applause.

By the end of the night, what was the final score last I checked?
Nicki Minaj + Katy Perry + Madonna + Lady Gaga + MIA – 0 Grammy’s.
Adele – 6 Grammys.  

I’m not saying Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry, Madonna, Lady Gaga, and MIA aren’t talented, or at least marketable.  I’m just saying that I found it interesting that the performer who did NOT try and create some buzz of chaos about her was the artist who walked away, entire audience in hand.

How does this apply to student ministry?

Again, I don’t want to draw any parallels that aren’t  there, but I can’t help but think that sometimes we try and do all the high-buzz events, when the pure gospel will attract enough of a following.  I think there’s a place for doing something eye-catching to an extent (even though I would rather wear a flank-steak dress in public than do a lock-in), but where is the focus?  Are we trying to employ shock and awe, or are we trying to lead people to the truth of the Gospel?

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