Shall We Play a Game?

Let’s play “Air Supply” or Worship Team. It’s the game craze that’s sweeping the nation. I’ll give you some lyrics and you tell me if it’s a song by the band “Air Supply” or a contemporary praise and worship song. Here we go:

Come to me, that’s all that I remember. Won’t you come to me, before I fade away. Oh, if you come to me and wrap me in your splendor. Come to me and let the music play. Here we are, how did we come so far? Just tell me how you are, I need to know. Night has come to see the senses run. And every single one, we all must show. And when you feel the flood upon the waters edge and take the leap from bitter sweet, Do you believe? Do you believe? Do you still believe?

If you guessed “Air Supply,” you’re right! Congratulations. You’re on a roll! Let’s keep going.

Draw me close to you, never let me go. I lay it all down again to hear you say that I’m your friend. You are my desire, no one else will do. ‘Cause nothing else could take your place, to feel the warmth of your embrace. Help me find the way, bring me back to you. You’re all I want, you’re all I’ve ever needed. You’re all I want, help me know you are near.

Ooh, I’m sorry. I know it sounds like “Air Supply,” but that was Kelly Carpenter’s 1994 hit “Draw Me Close,” a Contemporary Praise and Worship standard—coming soon to a Lutheran contemporary service near you. Or perhaps only near me.

One for two ain’t bad.

But seriously folks, what place has this got in the worship of the church? It’s scary to me that there really is no qualitative difference between the two. It’s all based on the context. Without a context this is a hair band love ballad.

But, gentle reader, there’s a trick that makes it all better. It’s called the “shift key.” Here’s how it works. You hold it down while you type the “y” in the word “you,” see, and what you get instead of the secular erotic love song lyric “you” is the contemporary praise and worship lyric “You.” And when you see that coming at you down the line of music, you know that you’re really singing to Jesus. You want to feel the warmth of his His embrace. He’s all you want. He’s all you’ve ever needed.

Will the contemporary craze ever check itself? Seriously, it’s like they don’t even care anymore, as long as there’s filler music. Is there any hope that its proponents will wake up to the fact that Sunday morning continues to look more and more like American Idol? And what argument justifies using such things in Lutheran worship services?

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5 Responses to Shall We Play a Game?

  1. anokihaish says:

    Hey! That last song was sung at my church this morning. Not by me though, but I wonder if anyone ever notices.

  2. ds says:

    What an amazing illustration of a sad (but somehow also hilarious) state of affairs. It is surely a reflection of the commercial ecclesiology of today’s American church. It’s all about attracting the greatest possible numbers with warm “religious” experiences. It’s a long way from Luther’s theology of the cross.

  3. […] 23 Jan 2007 Laugh or You’ll Cry Posted by ds under   Take a look at this blog entry I found about contemporary worship lyrics. You’ll either be laughing or crying; I can’t […]

  4. Lawrence says:

    Will the contemporary craze ever check itself?

    No.

    Unfortunately.

  5. […] a look at this blog entry I found about contemporary worship lyrics. You’ll either be laughing or crying; I can’t […]

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