I was raised an asphalt cowboy. I have always lived in or close to the major metropolitan areas of Texas. As a boy I ran barefoot in the bar ditches and bayous of Houston, Texas. I carried my trusted Red Ryder BB gun or Benjamin Pellet gun everywhere. I wore oversize cowboy boots, faded denim jeans, dreamed of owning a painted pony and dog sidekick. Not your everyday farm boy or ranch hand but I have always loved the look and feel that is “country.”
This week were the Country Music awards. Two or three hours of old and new country music, corny jokes and fancy clothes. You know, I usually don’t watch that stuff, but this was really good. I mean good in a lot of ways. The music was good. The people were encouraging, actually referred to Jesus and God quite often, and in a good way. There were no political statements or judgments, no cursing or cultural digs or platforms. It reminded me of days long ago, days I thought were lost. I was encouraged.
Our culture today is so caught up in the immediate. It is stuck in this terrible uproar of political news and instant idea exchange that fills our every moment. That is, if we let it.
There is good out there. That show had a lot of good people and good messages. Yes, some of the country songs have words and themes that are not the biblical direction you might want your kids to go. Okay so ream me out for saying something good about them. Find anything that is completely safe, without sin. You would struggle.
Our church families should be a place where we find respite from the words and ideas that ravage our peace. We have to pursue the quiet, the loving, the joyful, the unified, the Fruit of the Spirit. Yes often we have to go after it, but our churches can make it available and often times do.
You can see in the eyes of the boys that come to KOZ what the world is trying to do. They often come in longing, wounded, wondering. The world has defined a place for them that is just so hard. They are told to believe a lie. The men of our world are beaten down just as bad or worse. Ah but those men who lead KOZ, after spending time with the boys, outdoors, begin to get a flicker back in their eyes. They encounter the Holy Spirit in amazing ways. And the boys, they begin to hear the true song Jesus wants them to hear. His lyrics through these men define a love that includes rescue, a loving father, a caring man. It’s beautiful.
If we don’t rescue the men of our world then are we just giving them over to the enemy? Are we just accepting the song he (satan) is playing? Do we allow that to be the melody playing in the boys lives today? We must offer them something and our churches are set up to lead.
I don’t know who won all the awards and I probably won’t be rushing out to buy a new album today. But I am encouraged and want to say thanks to country music for being a light in the usually dark corridor of society, music and media. Thanks for a nice evening with the Mrs. and the conversations that came from the time together. I am a proud asphalt cowboy, still dreaming of the ranch, the horse and the faithful dog. Add in my gal, an old pickup, a country song and seems like a pretty good place to be.
Founder KOZ, Kids Outdoor Zone