Regular readers of my irregularly-written blog will remember that I have on occasion expressed my frustration with the several different forms of “Christian media”, and today’s post is no exception. The most popular Christian radio station here in Atlanta, as best I can tell, is 104.7, “The Fish”. It plays on our radio from time to time, and it’s passable, I suppose (given the definition I read recently of Contemporary Christian Music: “bad music written about God by white people”).
What annoys me is the advertising campaigns that The Fish chooses to employ. First, their motto is “Safe for the Whole Family”. Understand, they play “Christian” music, in the sense that the majority of their playlist consists of songs that either overtly or subtly refer to Jesus in some way, shape, or form. I feel pretty certain that the majority, likely 100%, of their staff would profess faith in Christ. That’s great, of course…but I am reminded of a short passage from C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe:
‘If there’s anyone who can appear before Aslan without their knees knocking, they’re either braver than me or else just silly.’
‘Then he isn’t safe?’ asked Lucy.
‘Safe?’ said Mr. Beaver. ‘Don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.’
Given that Aslan is a Christ-figure, I think Lewis has it right: Jesus is anything but safe. Ah, but the music we write about this domesticated God-man is “safe for the whole family”. OK.
Now, in a pitch for their morning drive-time “Kevin and Taylor in the Morning”, they describe what goes on as “Good, Clean Fun”. OK…we sing songs about Jesus, and then reduce the experience to “good, clean fun”. Hmmm…Jesus isn’t “safe for the whole family”, and for goodness’ sake, is He “good, clean fun”?
Such is the banality of much of contemporary Christian discourse…