I’m not Ashamed

and other lessons learned from the Newsboys.

I had a discussion with my husband today about the direction of our country’s government, specifically when juxtaposed to other large governments. We specifically discussed our country’s unique protection of rights, and how that is slowly disintegrating into a red tape bureaucracy. He mentioned an advertisement he’d seen: a dark scene in which a law enforcement official searches a man’s car and finds a bundle of newspapers to be distributed hidden under a seat cover. The man is hastily arrested without being read his rights and the newspapers are confiscated. The message of the advertisement being, “Don’t take your rights for granted.”

It reminded me of many experiences recounted to me by missionaries who have ventured into China. How very poor the majority of the people living there are, in both material and immaterial goods. Restrictions on what you may say, how you may say it, and whom you may say it around. That the majority of students have only two outfits of clothing, so that they may wash one while wearing the other. That people disappear without warning or word as to where they have gone. They simply vanish and are quickly forgotten in word, though perhaps not in mind. It has become routine.

After sharing this conversation, I drove home listening to the Christian band, the Newsboys. I don’t like many Christian artists or bands. I feel that they’re redundant and mainstream to a point that makes me want to hurl. But I grew up on the Newsboys and I find more depth in their music every time I take a listen than I did in my early faith. And listening to their music, I was reminded of a particular song: I’m not ashamed.

The song is very simple with a clear cut, straightforward message: I will not compromise my proclamation of the gospel for what is pleasant for you, nor for what may earn me more finite wealth. As I listened to another song, Believe, I recognized a statement of objectivism: “There is black. There is white. There is wrong and there is right.” Further, a clear statement held within the chorus: faith is not just a feeling. It is grounded on reason. Even in such light hearted songs such as Tuning In there are such nuggets as the idea that no one controls your own faith but you.

Now I know, I know, these are simple messages. They’re roots that run deep into the most basic ideas of Christian faith. But perhaps it’s good for us all to maintain open senses to listen to God in the most distant areas of our lives, as well as those closest to us.

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