Slight variation on an old saying:
All play and no joy makes Jack a dull boy.
And not at all apropos of the above:
In recent months it’s struck me how much Christian music has lost its sense of joy. Listen to one of Radio Rhema’s various outlets and you’ll hear singer after singer injecting a kind of melancholy into their songs, even songs that have a perfectly good ‘uplift’ otherwise.
I spoke to a guy who was running a retreat I was at a couple of months ago: he didn’t seem to be hearing this melancholy, even though one of the songs he played was an oldie which was being sung as though it was a dirge.
And at the South Island Pastors’ Conference, I spoke to the guy who was doing most of the worship leading. He didn’t seem to be hearing this melancholy either, and kind of brushed off what I was saying.
However, my wife agrees with me, and if she hears it, then it’s definitely there.
It’s as if the singers have got it into their heads that God is only pleased when we come with a kind of apologetic tone. Gone are the days – it appears – when people sang with full hearts and lots of energy. Not it’s all ‘boo hoo, how sad am I’. A weird state of affairs for Christians, of all people.