Some of you know I used to be in a metal band that played the pubs and clubs of Birmingham, England. We told of our faith without shame. The set often ended with “Unity”, which had me screaming “I love you, Jesus!” a lot. After I left the band to pursue other callings, especially my wife Sarah, I found that since she does not share the same love of metal, my own time enjoying that breed of musical joy has declined. But of late, I’ve been rediscovering Blindside, Death Is Not Welcome Here, early P.O.D., Disciple, The Showdown and newcomers Fallstar and I AM ALPHA AND OMEGA (both of whom are on the Come&Live! roster).
Of all the things to draw me back in, it is an increase in prayer that has caused me to hit play on the heavier music more frequently. Because when we pray, in some aspect we go to war. And war does not have a quiet, acoustic soundtrack. War rages.
What are we warring against? Firstly, ourselves. The praying Christian is the Christian submitted to the authority and power of God. The one who prays knows it is not their own power to affect a situation that is needed, but the move of the One who made it all. Our first fight is against pride and we must dig trenches of humility to reclaim ground.
Secondly, we see a most important insight from the Apostle Paul in his letter to the Ephesians:
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 6:12 ESV)
We war against an opposing army, one that we cannot see but can see the effect of, and often feel the impact of. I am reading Russell Moore’s “Tempted & Tried” and in the opening chapters he points out that, when we become Christians, the target increases on us as we carry the fullness of God in us by the Holy Spirit, and God is the very focus of their attack.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that, in the work of prayer (and believe me it feels very much like work and effort right now), the soundtrack to this war should not be mistaken for a cozy dinner party with the enemy. If you’re one who loves the heavy music, tune it into something that proclaims the victory of Christ and go to war! Ask God to move, resist the enemy and rejoice that in Christ we are redeemed!!